Hope you are all doing flawlessly.
Let me just say – I think you’re in for a treat!
Janelle first met Anne in 2009 when she invited her to guest judge for her local knitter’s guild show. She had just started designing, so you can imagine that having the opportunity to spend time with a designer that she really admired was the chance of a lifetime. It was during this visit that Anne mentioned a new endeavour; one featuring all natural yarns. Hence, the creation of Fall in Full Color and Bare Naked Knitspot.
The first designs Janelle ever created using Bare Naked Wools, were the Every Which Way Collection.
“The first time I touched Bare Naked Wools ‘Confection’ I knew two things: 1) I wanted to wrap myself in the yarn and 2) the amount of “spring” in the yarn would make it a dream to knit with.”
Janelle is graciously offering not only an Every Which Way Set ebook but ALSO an Interwoven Blanket pattern to all of our blog readers! Winning is easy; go to Janelle’s designer page and check out all of the beautiful pieces she’s designed since 2009! Won’t you tell us what pattern you love!? Winners will be selected Tuesday May 19th at midnight, (so getchur comments in!) We’ll announce the winner on Wednesday! Happy commenting!
This past summer, Janelle traveled to New Foundland, specifically, the arctic coastal tundra region where the Vikings had the first European Settlement in North America. This stunning landscape inspired her upcoming collection. “I find the remote and stark landscapes inspiring – nature has such beautiful lines and movement.”
Janelle’s collection will offer 30-40 pieces (shawls/stoles, scarves, hats, cowls, blankets, and possibly socks.) If she can squeeze them in! I mean, that’s A LOT of knitted goodness!
“I knew right away that the beautiful, natural colours and textures of Bare Naked Wools paired perfectly with this landscape. The collection also features indie dyers, focusing on colours drawn from New Foundland and it’s geographical cousins in Iceland and coastal Ireland.”
The collection is being offered in three parts. Part One will be released this August. Part Two comes out at the end of this year and Part Three will be available in Spring of 2016. Each part of the collection will be offered as an ebook or individual patterns.
Secret Society is a “teaser” pattern from the upcoming book. The pattern calls for either Stone Soup Fingering or Mrs. Lincoln’s Lace. It’s a bottom up, triangular shawl inspired by rocks found in The Burren, Ireland.
Janelle described her design process to me. I find this aspect of knitted garments extremely interesting. All too often, I’m wondering how a designer envisions a concept and thus, turns it into art:
My favourite items to design are shawls and stoles. The large amount of space allows me to incorporate multiple stitch patterns. I call my design aesthetic “organic”. I like there to be continuous lines in my work, for the stitch patterns to grow out of each other. Often this means I have to create transition charts to move from one stitch pattern into the other. My complex lace designs, such as Cartouche Shawloften have five or six charts to handle these transitions, but the result is worth it.
I’m drawn to the complexity of Japanese stitch patterns. Their stitch dictionaries show stitches that are combinations of smaller elements joined together and there is such beauty and complexity in their presentations. These stitch dictionaries approach knitting with a different eye and that is what I’m drawn to. I tend to combine patterns that share elements and can build cohesive designs out of these stitch patterns. An example of this is my Flower Bell Stole.
The cohesive element in this design is the raised flower bud. It appears in the attached edging, the bottom border, two different sizes in the left/right borders and in large form in the centre panel. The use of this element in various sizes creates cohesiveness of design. Of course, these stitch patterns “eat” yarn just like cables do and so I had to work through several iterations of this design before I found a final version I liked that didn’t require excessive amounts of yarn.
Here at Knitspot HQ, we are so excited to see what Janelle has in store over the next few months! Her 3 part series is sure to be a treat for the eyes and a joy to knit. We’re thrilled to be in collaboration with her and we wish her incredible success!
She wishes to mention one last thing:
I owe a lot to the incredible support, encouragement and mentorship provided by fellow designers like Anne Hanson and Kate Atherley, indie dyers/designers such as Kim McBrien Evans (Indigodragonfly) and Tabi Ferguson (Sericin Silkworks), industry professionals such as Amy Singer (Knitty) and Sanguine Gryphon who included my early designs in their publications, and Karen Crouch, the amazing owner of my LYS Shall We Knit? I would not be where I am today without the invaluable resource these incredible women have been and their excellent advice.