Lately I have been so inspired by everyone's Me-Made-May posts on Instagram. Me-Made-May was started by Zoe of So Zo, and is a challenge in which you wear your me-mades more often through May, and encourage people to develop a better relationship with their handmade wardrobe. Although I am not participating this year, I have been thingking more about my wardrobe, and hope I feel more confident, so that I could join in next year.
Today on the blog, we introduce Amy van de Laar, the designer behind Anagram from our latest issue. Her shawls, hats, and other accessories are all so beautifully textured, but at the same time, so wearable that it would be a staple piece in your wardrobe. So let's start asking her questions.
amirisu: Where did you get the inspiration for this design?
Amy: Like many of my geometric designs, this hat and wrap grew out of their stitch patterns. I have a lot of fun creating stitch patterns, and it’s very satisfying when I manage to translate an idea from nature or a photo into something that works. I sometimes like to combine small motifs in different ways until I arrive at something I like, or something unexpected. The stitch patterns in the Anagram Hat & Wrap are made up of small building blocks of 6 stitches and 12 rows, each with a vertical rib and a diagonal rib. From these blocks, I built the meandering pattern of the wrap and the zigzags and diamonds of the hat. Geometric patterns like these are some of my favourite things to design and knit.
amirisu: If you were to knit with another color, what will it be? Amy: My absolute favourite colour to knit with is warm gold, e.g. Klimt in Brooklyn Tweed Arbor. But I think these designs would also be very beautiful in Degas, which is a soft, barely-there pink.
amirisu: If someone was visiting your city, any recommendations on yarn shops, or any other places to go?
Amy: I’ve lived in Melbourne for about five years, and I’m always discovering new things here! There are two lovely little yarn shops that I visit: Maker Maker, which stocks a wide range of Australian yarn, and Yarn + Co, which is the local stockist for Brooklyn Tweed’s yarns and patterns. I was at Maker Maker just this Saturday for a knit-along meetup, and had the pleasure of meeting a few Instagram and Ravelry friends in person. Local yarn shops are fantastic for bringing knitters together.
My favourite non-knitting-related place in Melbourne is the National Gallery of Victoria, which has a huge collection on permanent display which is free to visit. It’s a great place to get lost in the art and get inspired. They also have amazing special exhibitions which come and go – the most recent ones I visited were an exhibition of Van Gogh’s paintings, and one of Hokusai’s prints.
One more interesting place to visit is the bat colony at Yarra Bend Park. If you arrive as night falls, you can watch thousands of grey-headed flying-foxes waking up in their trees and flying away over the river.