TSK: So, you seem to design mostly hats, and I am stupid in love with them. I'm not even a hat person really, but there's something about your hats that makes me want to knit them all! Why mostly hats? Is there something about them you particularly like designing? Do you wear a lot of hats yourself?
AT: I do wear a lot of hats, but I honestly couldn't tell you whether that started before or after the knitting. When you've amassed a hat collection like mine (I think about 50 at last count), you've really got to wear them, haha... I love hats because they usually take only a skein or two of yarn (and I'm very much the type of person to go "Ooooh, pretty yarn!" and buy one skein of it) and you don't have to make two of them. I like scarves and shawls for the same reason, though usually those take a little longer. Plus, at this point I've spent so much time with hats that I can start doing weird creative stuff with them since I know their basic constructions so well.
TSK: Oh my word, 50 hats? Girl, you really do like hats! I guess that's about the same as my shoe collection, though...(ahem) Soooooo, how long have you been knitting? Was there a moment at which you thought to yourself, "You know, I could design professionally", or did it just kind of happen for you?
AT: I learned in high school, so like...8 or 9 years ago. Yikes! Has it really been that long? I started knitting a lot in college, mostly to help entertain and keep me awake during lectures. I initially started selling the knits themselves, back when Etsy was new and shiny. Eventually, I decided it made more sense to write up the patterns and sell those, because it's very, very hard to make enough to cover materials + time for handknits. Turns out, I like writing patterns a lot better than any of my other career plans!
TSK: What's your background? Are you still in school? Working? Designing full time?
AT: I have a BA in Psychology and what basically amounts to a minor in Visual Arts (my school didn't do minors, but if it had, I would've). I'm not so much using the Psychology degree, hehehe...
As of last October, I'm designing full time, though I'm still building to the point where it can sort of legitimately count as a job. Luckily we live cheaply!
Alex has also published 2 ebooks, Go Go Malabrigo, Volumes 1 and 2.
TSK: Uh-oh, now the next time I see you I'm going to worry you're psycho-analyzing me, haha! Glad the arts won out, for real. So what's up next for you? Are we going to be seeing more hats?
AT: I'm working on a super-slightly-secret book project with my friend/fellow yarnieface/photographer Vivian Aubrey. It's been a bit stalled out (it's really hard to not get sidelined when you're working on long-term things), but I'm starting to put my nose back to the grindstone and crank that sucker out. It will have both garments and accessories, and will be centered around a particular fashion subculture that I think is pretty snazzy, aesthetically. If Vivian has anything to say about it, it'll look awesome. We're hoping to get a print publisher to pick it up, but it may just be digital. We'll see.
TSK: Well good luck with that, Alex! I'll definitely be looking forward to seeing the new collection!
Alex is excited to offer a complimentary copy of one of her ebooks to one lucky reader; to enter to win, simply leave a comment stating whether you'd win Collection 1 or Collection 2! I'll announce the winner on Wednesday, October 5th. In the meantime, Alex is offering 20% off her patterns until October 7th; enter the code "sexyinterview" during checkout! What are you waiting for? Go stock up on some goodies!
You can keep tabs on Alex's design career by finding her on Ravelry, her blog, Facebook fan page, Ravelry group, or Twitter.
Oh, and are you wondering who won the giveaways from Laura's interview? Well, sosoclever won the subscription to Adorn, and Moreen won the kit! Congrats, ladies! If you can drop me a line at thesexyknitter AT gmail DOT com, I'll get you in touch with Laura!