Oh my goodness freaking gracious, you guys.. I have been waiting for this day for OVER an entire YEAR. Let me explain.
Back on April 20, 2017 I received an email from my dear friend, Francesca, who works at We Are Knitters in Madrid, Spain. Having had a relationship with this company for some time prior to that date, I was just eager to hear from her! But… then… The subject of this particular email simply read “2018 Crochet Collection” and I was unsure as to what that would mean, but I can't tell you just how fast I opened that email..
As I clicked inside the email and read through all of Francesca’s seriously encouraging and exciting words, I set my laptop down, mouth wide open and tears streaming down my face. We Are Knitters, a company I’ve so highly looked up to and enjoyed, was asking me to collaborate with them on a COLLECTION of kits with them!! OH MY FREAKING GOSH. Was this real life?!
After wiping the drool from my chin and picking my jaw back up off of the floor, I eagerly (but not *too* eagerly.. ha!) wrote her back and excitedly accepted the offer. I WAS GOING TO COLLABORATE WITH ONE OF THE MOST AMAZING YARN COMPANIES ON THE PLANET!!! Guys, what a freaking opportunity to sit alongside my friend, Krysten Ritter, with a selection of kits offered worldwide, available in seven different languages.
After several months of working on different designs, creating the samples, writing the patterns and communication with WAK to get everything set in motion, November had arrived and I was elated to be able to ship out the package of samples out to Madrid, Spain (where WAK headquarters is located) as well as email over all of the files and photos. I had done it!! I really did it!! I created four brand new patterns, as well as chose to include my original Nolan Top pattern (many of you have asked over the last year where it went - so sorry I wasn’t able to share, but now you know where you can get it!). A few days later, I vacationed in Disneyland with my family and had an absolute blast. It felt like such a great way to celebrate the ending of this amazing chapter, and begin the waiting game for spring time when I knew these would be launched.
However, December rolled around and a HUGE setback chose to make an appearance in this otherwise perfect situation.
I received an email from Francesca stating that customs would not deliver the package with all of my samples (that I had spent hours upon hours upon hours creating and designing) because I had incorrectly marked the international shipping label..
You guys, I legitimately BAWLED. Like snot everywhere, puffy and swollen eyes, and a feeling of failure that because of my mistake, I greatly affected the timeline that this large company had scheduled around their other promotions. I have never felt so low and so unprofessional in my ENTIRE LIFE.
Good thing the folks at WAK are true heroes and friends, they encouraged their crochet team to work up new samples from my patterns so they could send them to me to reshoot. Though this wasn’t an ideal situation, making for so much more work and investment on behalf of WAK, at least I knew I was able to get them everything they needed to accomplish this seriously once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
A few weeks later, I received the package of samples and scheduled my reshoot with my photographer. But wait for it.. Get this.. The DAY BEFORE our scheduled reshoot, I happened to stop by the post office to check my PO box expecting a few packages. As I open the parcel locker, I see this large brown box and hadn’t been expecting a large package like that. Confused, I look at who it was from..
It was from me? To We Are Knitters? Wait.. wait.. HOLD UP A SECOND!
The day before our scheduled reshoot, FOUR MONTHS after this package went missing, FIVE MONTHS after I had shipped it, it randomly shows up back in my possession, just in time for the reshoot the following day. PRAISE THE LORD. How was this possible?! Could the timing be any more perfect?!
I remember running back out to my car, throwing open my door and ripping into the package while standing outside my car. I was just so eager to see if this package was really what I thought it was and if everything was still there.. and it was. It still had all of the little tea packets I had included for my WAK friends, and all of my samples completely untouched and in pristine state.. I cannot accurately describe to you the overwhelming feelings of gratefulness and joy I felt in that moment.
Cue the tears, once again.
I know not everyone has the same beliefs as me, and that’s ok. For me, this was a true answer to prayer and a loving reminder that He is in control and was there to support and encourage me. God knew all of the work I had done, knew the frustrations that made their way into this project, but still knew that I'd get that package, exactly when I needed it. What a gift!
As soon as I made it back home, I immediately emailed Francesca and let her know the good news, and she was just as shocked and surprised and elated as I was. The following day, we had the reshoot and it was literal perfection - sunny skies, available venue, and a good hair day. I was able to model these special designs with a glow of knowing that I hadn’t completely messed everything up. That this dream come true, was just exactly that... a dream come true.
But the most important news, is that today is here. All of these ups, downs, sideways and diagonals have all been worth it. The frustrations, the tears, the joys, the feeling of utter gratefulness.. I will forever and always be grateful for this moment today. If anyone has ever told you that you aren’t good enough, or that your hobbies and interests can’t turn into successful careers, tell them to be quiet. Because, you know what? They are so incredibly WRONG. If I can turn a little side hobby started simply because I wanted to give myself an outlet to feel more "me" and turn it into an internationally known name, you can too. There's NOTHING that kindness, hard work, humility and a mentality of community over competition can't accomplish.
Big things really can happen to "small" people. If you would have told me ten years ago that I'd be here, happy in my own skin, collaborating with some of the biggest names in the fiber world, I would have laughed the biggest, loudest, most obnoxious laugh right in your face. It is life changing what stepping out of your comfort zone and following your own dreams and desires and not letting anyone or anything stand in your way can do. This includes yourself.. You can't accomplish big goals, if you don't step out and try. Follow your heart, and never stop. What would have happened if I had never kept practicing crochet when I was teaching myself? What would have happened had I never created my Instagram profile for my little crochet journey?
But more than that, LOOK what DID happen because I never gave up? The world is yours - reach for it.
I want everyone to know that you are capable of ANYTHING you want - even things you never knew could even be possibilities. Hard work, humility and kindness has shown to be the most beneficial facets of me and my business over the years. More than marketing, more than promotions, more than collaborations.. Being ME has gotten me further than I could have ever dreamed, and I wouldn’t want it any other way. Starting from YouTube videos to learn to crochet while I stayed home with our new baby, to opening an Etsy shop in 2012, to focusing on pattern design in 2016, to telling you today, on April 30, 2018, about my incredible opportunity to design a collection of kits for a company who has been supportive of me for the past several years. It can happen, it really can. Don’t forget that, ever.
Side note: Did you know that We Are Knitters was founded on an idea? Alberto, the founder, loved to knit and wanted to create a company around his love of knitting and fiber. He sat down, talked it out, made plans and now We Are Knitters is an internationally known company selling countless kits all over the world to people like you and me. Imagine if he had never decided to act on his imagination..
I do hope you all enjoy these new designs, I am so absolutely proud of them and can’t wait to see you all explore them and feel empowered when you finally get to put them on.
My new kit designs are all made using We Are Knitters The Cotton! This collection includes:
I mean, who doesn’t love bobbles?! Inspired by WAK’s uber popular Sabrina Sweater knit kit, I was super excited to create a design that crocheter’s could have something similar to make and add to their closet!
This super easy, beginner-friendly crochet pattern works up into a super adorable striped tee and is a perfect first project for anyone wanting to dip their toes into garment creation!
This piece, you guys.. I’m sure this is one of my all time favorite cardigans I’ve ever made. The cotton yarn has such beautiful drape, warmth and breathability making this design perfect for all seasons! Did you see the ruffle detail on the back?! So cute!
I really wanted to make something flowy and feminine, but something that would also be fun to work up. Combining different stitches as well as two colors to create a wonderful interest, the Felicity Poncho was born. I also love the freedom and versatility the hem offers which allows each Maker to either close up the sides more, or only seam a portion which gives a wonderful spring-y vibe!
I know, I know, I know… Many of you have been on the lookout to get your hands on this pattern since I took it off my sales channels last summer after I (secretly) chose to include it into the collection. Though many of you will want just the pattern, believe me, purchasing it as a WAK kit will be even better. The Cotton yarn has GORGEOUS drape and is what I originally made my first Nolan Top with. So excited to include this baby of mine! For those that do not know, Nolan was my FIRST garment pattern I ever wrote and being able to have it be part of this collaboration is such an honor!
Thank you, more than I can express, to my friends at We Are Knitters who have offered me such a huge and impactful moment in my life and for working so hard to enable to me have this dream come true. I've learned so much about myself over these last twelve months and having it all fall into place like it has, it such a gift. PLEASE check out the kits on the We Are Knitters website and snag one, if you can!
Be sure to share your kits, progress, and finished photos online using hashtag #wakxthn!! Feel free to also use #weareknitters and #thehooknookers to share with our communities!