A Year in Review: The Beginnings

2014 has come and gone so quickly! January 2nd will mark my one-year anniversary of when I first undertook the task of learning how to knit. To celebrate this achievement in my life, I thought it would be fun to write out the timeline of my progress to see how far I've come and set new goals for 2015. Thanks to IG, I can pinpoint during which months I started and completed projects (though I apologize for the fuzzy photos!).


In January, I learnt how to knit in the round and back and forth, as well the basics of lace and cable (although I didn't know at the time). I was mostly knitting garments from patterns I found online, however I would experiment with some of them and transform them into something "new" (like a shawl pattern and make it into a cowl).


In February I designed my first cowl! (This is the Honey Comb Cowl). The majority of this month was spent knitting THREE alpaca plushies (though only the last one was fully photographed). The results were... mixed. If I have the pattern in my notebooks, I might re-visit this.


In March I designed a cabled cowl and hat set for my fiancé. I also made some simple garter stitch cowls and practiced some very basic seaming techniques. I also knit some flowers to attach to one of my cowls.


April was a slower month. I made a raspberry stitch beanie, the Enchanted Vines Beanie (the first version, I later went back and edited it to death) and this seed-stitch cowl. I loved that cowl.


I knit my first shawl in May! It was a very small triangular shawlette with a lace leaf design (I edited it for it to make the Lovely Leaves Shawlette). I learnt about blocking during this time and also started to experiment with different yarn brands and fibers. 

I also got married in May. And published my first patterns on Ravelry!

My new husband then asked me to knit him a sweater (which to this day has still not been completed, the only WIP project in my stash).


More shawls this month! I re-knit the Lovely Leaves shawl to make it bigger and then made the SeaShell Shawl, which was my first crescent shaped shawl. I published this shawl to Ravelry and it made the first page of "Hot Projects" for a couple days! It was a great feeling.

All the projects I knit were self-designed... I pretty much stopped knitting from patterns from April. I also made another present for my hubby, a slip-stitch beanie made from Noro yarn.


My first commissioned piece! And it was a peplum smocked pullover from Vogue Knitting! It was quite a challenge to say the least... I consider this to be my first pullover project (I had gotten too bored with my husband's project at this point). I finished this in about three weeks. There were quite a few mishaps along the way (accidentally cutting the yarn of the pullover, going back and redoing the seems) but I was really proud of it. It also found its way on Vogue Knitting's FB page with over 3,000 likes...!

I was still playing around with crescent shawls and designed the Cherry Blossom Shawl but didn't publish it until a few months later. I also launched my blog, Aroha Knits.


In August I moved to Japan and had to find a new source where I could buy yarn (thankfully I found them pretty quickly). During this month I designed the Winding Roads Beanie and worked on commissioned pieces. I also redesigned my older patterns - adding better notes to the pattern as to reflect what I had learnt over the months. I also got my husband to teach me how to use his camera so I could take better pictures.


Designed the Bell-flower shawl and sent out a call for test knitters for four of my patterns, the Winding Road Beanie, Lovely Leaves Shawl, Cherry Blossom Shawl and the Bell-Flower shawl. The test knit for the Winding Roads Beanie went quickly and I offered it for free for a weekend. It absolutely blew up, with over 5,000 downloads! 


I spent the majority of the month working on commissions: cowls, shawls and hats as well as tutorial videos for the website.


I had a client ask me to design a shawl for her and her mother. I started with her mother's shawl, which is now the Entrelacement shawl. I also made the Rayon de Soleil shawlette this month too. I got to publish the Cherry Blossom and Bellflower Shawls during this month as well.

I was asked to teach some of the older ladies in the village I live in how to knit and do basic projects. 


Crunch time for commissions. I spent the first half of the month working on a secret project (which will be revealed later this year!) and a Harry Potter scarf for a good friend of mine. During the holiday break I designed this shawl, which will be published on Ravelry later on today!


What will 2015 hold in store for me? My goals for this year is to learn and study the theory behind different yarn fibers, get at least one pattern published in a magazine and really go full force with my designs (get creative with shawls and give a go with designing a pullover!).