Sooo....this is a bit awkward; I get to introduce myself. I am Brianne, Hypnotic Yarn's assistant. Most people call me Bri (pronounced "Bree") or Brizee. I help with the pattern testing, respond to emails, type blog posts, and such things like that. Cheryl asked if I would share my knitting background, so here we go!
Q: Why did you start knitting and how did you learn?
A: I started knitting when I was in the 3rd trimester of my first pregnancy. I felt the urge to make something for my daughter. We lived overseas, but I was able to find a lady who showed me how to cast on and do a knit stitch. I taught myself everything else using trial and error, Google and YouTube. I knitted and crocheted a few blankets but the hobby died as quickly as it started (that was 8 years ago). After my first daughter was born, I taught myself to sew. Sewing is my favorite hobby, but knitting is a becoming a very close second. About two years ago, a very good and wonderful friend asked me to test a knitting pattern she designed, so I picked up the needles again. Her patterns taught me a lot in a short amount of time. I would call myself an overly confident intermediate knitter.
Q: "Overly confident" haha! I make myself laugh. Do you have a favorite type of project or design element?
A: Pretty. Ha! I like simple designs (because I always multi task with audiobooks or Netflix) but that have a big bang to them-like cables and yarn overs. Call me lazy, but I don’t want anything so complicated that I can’t listen to a book at the same time or worse yet, that I have to count every stitch. Gasp!
Q: I don't know anyone who wants to count stitches. Do you have a favorite yarn weight? What types of colorways are you drawn to?
A: I love worsted. It’s fast and furious. Though, I have started to really appreciate the versatility of fingering weight. I love all colors, especially when mixed with black. If I had to narrow it down, I am boring and usually gravitate towards muted tones rather than bright/loud.
Q: In the knitting world, we call boring "vanilla". It sounds better. Are you a yarn hoarder or do you only buy with specific patterns in mind?
A: Ha ha! My yarn stash isn’t that large. I pretty much only buy a skein when I have a project in mind, unless there is a fantastic sale. Most of the skeins you see will become socks for family Christmas presents. But…you should see my fabric stash!
Q: We see a tiny peak of your fabric in that photo. Do you have a favorite FO? What makes it so special?
A: I would say this sock. Yes, THIS as only one is done right now. It’s special because it’s my own pattern (but using the HY Lianna stitch) to perfectly fit my foot. The yarn is Hypnotic Yarn in Rose Petal Tea. I love the colorway; it’s calm and beautiful. If my slave-driving boss would slow down, I might get the chance to finish its twin. *totally kidding- wink wink*
Q: Eh, hum, lets hope Cheryl doesn't read that comment. What do you like most about knitting?
A: That I can “read” audiobooks and knit at the same time! I can’t sew and listen to books. I really don’t know what the difference is…
Q: What patterns are on your short list to make in 2018?
A: Not so much patterns, but things. You remember I mentioned all those socks, right? Like most cats, my furry friend is slightly neurotic. When she is stressed, she licks a single spot on her chest which then turns into a hot spot. I'm determined to knit her a little sleeveless shirt so she can't get to that spot. I might be just as crazy as she is. Also, I finished knitting a sweater back in December 2017. That was a two year project and I freakin’ hate the sleeves. Lucky for me, it will be easy to rip them off and re-do.
Q: Frogging stinks. Do you go to an in person or online knitting group?
A: No. I’m a social introvert. Is that a thing? Though I absolutely would if I found an awesome buddy to knit with. Preferably someone who likes wine, too.
Q: Do you have a favorite LYS or two? Tell us about them.
A: My LYS is Monarch Knitting. I have been in there once and it is quite lovely. Is it horrible that I mainly purchase yarn from online indie dyers?! I love to torture myself waiting for goodies to arrive in the mailbox.
Q: Do you have a favorite knitting resource, link, video or any a tip / trick you can share?
A: My greatest flaw is that I continue to make the same mistake until I figure out the solution on my own. I feel so much more accomplished in the end. I shouldn’t be so stubborn and just Google my errors. My trick, which I do with sewing as well, is to read through the pattern before I begin. It helps get my bearings before jumping in.
Q: You mentioned sewing, but do you crochet, weave, or spin? What other crafts/hobbies to you enjoy when you’re not knitting?
A: I can crochet, though it has been so, so, so many years. I love baking. Cookies, pies, cakes, and breads. Always from scratch with love.
I’m a sewist. I would call myself a seamstress, but I don’t only sew clothes; I also make a lot of bags.
Q: Is there anything you wished I’d asked and didn’t?
A: Let’s see…I hate peas. So gross. I hate coffee too. Nasty! I love ridiculous play on words and puns. I love cats, probably a little too much. I also do Brazilian Jiu Jitsu! Currently, I am working on my pink belt (women's empowerment/self defense) and occasionally do combative classes working towards a blue belt.
Quick Fire questions:
Which Hogwarts house do you belong to?
Go-to sock pattern?
my own, preferably shorties
What color is your toothbrush?
If you could be any animal what would it be?
Who is your favorite super hero?
Do you knit in public?
Favorite snack food?
Jelly beans. Ugh! It’s a problem
Are you a morning or a night person?
I’m sharpest around 12pm.
Where would you go if you were invisible?
Do you block your socks?
What is this “blocking” thing you mention?!
Tell us a little about yourself!
I’m married to a Navy Officer, so we have lived many places in our almost 10 years together. We have two daughters, Alexandra (Bees) and Madeleine (Cookie), and my furry soul mate, Jewel the cat. I grew up in Texas, San Diego feels like home, but we currently live in Monterey, CA. I have a blog, Cookies n Bees, though it is all about sewing. I don’t blog on my own much anymore, but occasionally still do bag sewalongs. You’re welcome to follow me on Instagram—BriMatlage or Ravelry--BrianneMatlage.
1. Rose City Rollers socks using Hypnotic Yarn's Spooktacular
2. MeMe Mae Designs Charlotte Cap using Caron Simply Soft
3. MeMe Mae Designs Ferns and Lace Shawl using...I don't remember
Thank you Brianne for joining us today and sharing your story!