Hello, friends! It’s a jam-packed update today, and I’m trying something a little different. If you’re a subscriber to my RSS feed, you’ll most likely just see this blog post as a normal post — but I’m tying it to my email newsletter as well so that the newsletter is a little more brief, whereas the blog posts will have more info. In the long run, I’m going to change up the format of the blog — but for now, we’re going to just see how this works.
General Fallingblox updates
The watchword of 2022 is “automation.” Perhaps also “integration” — I’m trying to do more with less, and let technology pick up some of the slack. In other words, where things can be done by automated systems, I’m trying to set that up, so I can streamline my content creation a bit more. Part of what gets in the way of my creative output is the time and trouble it takes to process things after I’ve created them. So we’ll see how I can do that a little better in the future.
Speaking of which, I have been working on getting my podcast back underway, thinking about a one-and-done live stream format on Twitch (subscribe there to be informed when something happens), which I will also record and release on my Youtube channel. The thing that really killed me was all the editing I needed to do after the filming, and if I can automate some of the transitions and come to some happy medium between the previous live versions on Facebook and the pre-recorded ones I’ve posted to Youtube, I may be able to get to a more sustainable place where I can do regular recordings again.
A new pattern — Tendrils
I have a series of new scarf patterns which will be released over the next month or two, depending on how quickly I get them back from my sample knitters. This was the first to return and is now the first to be released. It’s called “Tendrils” and is a basic double-knit scarf pattern in Rowan Felted Tweed/Felted Tweed Colour (their new gradient line of colorways). It’s been too long since I’ve released a truly intro-level pattern, and I hope people will enjoy knitting something pretty that doesn’t require a lot of special techniques.
Perhaps when the pandemic is properly over, I’ll be more easily able to find models; until then, I’m not going to let my lowered social contact stop me from releasing patterns. Lucy Neatby takes photos of her work in nature, why shouldn’t I?
Patreon supporters at the Slip-stitch tier and above already got their free download of this pattern; if you join this month, you can also get it for free (as well as the upcoming ones when they’re released).
Virtual Workshops continue unabated
Regardless of what happens with the pandemic in the future, virtual workshops are here to stay. Yes, I’ve done some live workshops and will do more this year and beyond, but I will continue to run virtual workshops at a rate of 2-4 per month depending on other scheduled events. As I alluded to in last year’s survey, I am thinking about some new workshops but I have not had the time to flesh them out for this season. I expect I will be working on those over the summer and testing them out in the Fall.
Without further ado, here are my currently scheduled virtual workshops; almost all are my 3-hour BuildingBlox workshops which you can enroll in directly through my website, but there is one other special event as well. All are in Eastern Time:
- Sat, Mar 12, 2-5pm: Intro to Double-knitting (SOLD OUT — see Apr 10)
- Sat, Mar 19, 2-5pm: Marling with Double-knitting (17 slots left — see next paragraph)
- Sun, Mar 20, 2-5pm: Double-knitting Cables (12 slots left)
- Sat, Mar 26, 2-5pm: Two-pattern Double-knitting (13 slots left)
- Sun, Apr 3, 2-5pm: Multi-color Double-knitting (NEW)
- Tues, Apr 5, 7-9pm: Wellness, Sip, & Wool #10 Retreat: Intro to Double-knitting
- Thurs, Apr 7, 6-9pm: Texture in Double-knitting (NEW)
- Sat, Apr 9, 2-5pm: Double-knitting Intarsia (NEW)
- Sun, Apr 10, 2-5pm: Intro to Double-knitting (NEW)
The workshop on March 19th is in danger of being cancelled due to low enrollment. To be honest, the marling workshop has never garnered as much interest as I thought it deserved, so if it doesn’t get more interest this time around, it may be that this workshop will be retired and I’ll find some other way to work marling concepts into a different workshop. Or I’ll put it on the back burner for a while and expect more interest when I have more patterns that use the techniques (nota bene: I have 3 or 4 already, which is more than I have in double-knit intarsia). If it is cancelled, everyone who has enrolled will get their fees refunded, of course.
… and live workshops continue anyway
I’ve just returned from my first “away” show (Red Alder, in Tacoma, WA) since the pandemic began, and it was a bit of a harrowing experience but good to get back into the swing of physical shows. Barring any new variants, I’ll be attending Interweave Yarn Fest in CO in April, and another TBA in October. I am not looking to do more physical shows this year, but will hopefully be doing more in 2023 if/when things have calmed down a bit, epidemiologically.
I can’t link to the individual workshops on Interweave’s site, but you can see what’s available and get there via their main workshop link.
Interweave Yarn Fest, Loveland, CO, Apr 20-23:
- Intro to Double-knitting
- Multi-color Double-knitting
- Double-knitting Off the Grid
- Double-knitting Lace
- Double-knitting Intarsia
I’m in a designing lull and have cast on to replace some of the patterns that were never replaced after the loss of many of my samples in the fire almost 2 years ago. Many generous souls volunteered their time to replace some of the lost samples, and all but a couple have been finished now. Some, however, either never found a match or the sample knitter had trouble and decided to return the yarn. Those I never passed on to another knitter, figuring I’d either do them myself, find someone later, or just live without. Spring Willow, however, I’ve always felt a little weird about my needle choice for and I welcomed the chance to rework it on a larger needle for more pronounced lace. So I am finally starting on that. Once it’s a little further in, I’m sure I’ll post it alongside photos of the original.
I am also well aware that I am overdue for a new book — but I have not been developing new techniques at the rate I would want to in order to write a book that continues the progression of the first two. Instead, I am thinking about going backward somewhat and creating a book which fills the space of a truly intro-level double-knitting book, which goes into depth with the basic technique, supported by exclusive and extensive videos, and offers a number of projects which will help new double-knitters get a really sound foundation in the technique. Possibly toward the end, I will add in some decreases to allow for some simple hat patterns. I expect that a lot of the knitting for this will be done by sample knitters to speed up the process.
Stay tuned for more soon — and thanks for reading!
2 thoughts on “News from every corner of Fallingblox Designs”
Hi Alasdair. Hope you’re well. I took your introductory workshop at EM in 2015. I really like the idea of a Beginners book, so if you need any encouragement for this project: you have it!
Yes, a comprehensive Beginners book would be perfect!