Congratulations to Anne!
Many of you have probably seen this already, but if not, take a peek at the preview of the Spring 08 edition of Interweave Knits. Scroll down and you'll find a design there by our beloved Anne Hanson (the Bleeding Hearts Stole).
I just wanted to step back today and offer up a "hearty" congratulations to Anne! I doubt anyone who visits my blog or my Etsy shop is unaware of the deep respect I have for Anne's work. It's been so wonderful to see her popularity grow and grow. This latest pattern in such a reputable and widespread publication is just the latest in a series of well-deserved milestones in her design career.
As I perused the photos of Anne's design on the IK site, I got to thinking about the internet and the knitting world. Before my Fearless Fibers days, I worked for many years for Intel. I remember the work the marketing folks there did on finding ways to show the human side of computing, how it touches our lives everyday in more subtle ways than just the obvious tasks we do at work or paying bills, etc. The knitting world seems such a good example of this.
The online knitting community is just that: a community. The popularity of knit-alongs is just one example of how knitters connect online and interact in a way that is not so very different than they would at a LYS. Online knitting and crochet forums provide inspiration, assistance, ideas, and motivation for many of us. There is always someone out there to provide guidance, share a laugh, or lend a sympathetic ear about a project gone awry. I think most of us who engage in this global online community recognize and appreciate this.
My interaction with Anne is another example of this "human" side of the internet. I first encountered Anne in Spring 06. I can't quite recall exactly how we got in touch, but I think it was one of her students who was a customer of mine in my old eBay shop and brought some of my yarn to a class to work one of Anne's projects. This led Anne to check my shop and ask me a few questions. In turn, that led me to her blog, which was quite new at the time. I remember sending her a note to let her know how much I enjoyed her blog. It stood out from the rest, both because of her amazing design work and also because of the quality of her writing and the fascinating insights into the mind of a designer, knitter, spinner, and overall fiber guru.
Thus began our relationship. I loved her designs. She loved my yarn. And we were also two women in a similar boat, both working on new ventures to translate our fiber passions into our livelihoods, and doing so primarily online.
Fearless Fibers has been an amazing journey for me. I sold my first skein of yarn in January 06, so I guess I've been at it for two years now (my "anniversary" passed without my even noticing it!). It's been equally amazing for me to watch Anne's journey. Anne had, of course, been teaching and designing long before I encountered her in Spring 06, but she was at that time just beginning to seriously branch out and focus strongly on her design work and the online world.
Although Anne and I have never met, she is still a friend and a constant source of inspiration. I feel extremely fortunate to have found her. Her work continues to amaze and delight me, and just knowing someone else out there who is successfully pursuing her dream in the vast cyber world is a steady reminder that the dream can be fulfilled.
A big Thank You again to, Anne ... and a hearty congratulations on the Bleeding Hearts Stole in IK!