Thursday, August 13, 2009

Etsy Knitters and Crocheters on Parade

Are you a native of the U.K.?

Yes I was brought up mostly in Scotland but lived in Iraq, Luxembourg and Kenya in between due to my Dad's job. He was an engineer and was working for the UN in Baghdad at the time of the Iran-Iraq war so bad timing there, my Mum and I were evacuated to Jordan in a truck.

Alona Kemmett has had her Etsy shop since July of last year. As always, to visit her store just clicke on the title above. I have enjoyed all of my interviews with Etsy fiber artists, but I especially like to interview someone outside the U.S. because there is always a chance that I will learn something new culturally. Alona Kemmett is not only outside the U.S., but has lived in many places.

Your Etsy profile says that you like natural fibers. Are they more popular than synthetics in the U.K.?

I wouldn't say so, there're still a lot of knitters who won't use anything but synthetics but I prefer to use wools that have been hand dyed and spun due to quality, softness and colour depth. Especially on Etsy there are so many amazing fiber artists who do wondrous things with yarn in both colour and texture...major kudos from me to hand dyers and spinners!

I do use synthetics but only if they look good and not too artificial - I use a lot of Lang and Lanartus ladder yarns in my necklaces.

You learned to knit when you were five years old. Who taught you?

My Mum taught me. I remember the first pair of needles were short and I think probably a 4mm and I did lots of mustard coloured hot pads! I found them years later so I guess she was proud! On her side of the family there were a lot of knitters - my Aunt was always sending me wool for various projects so I was always knitting as a child, some worked; a lot didn't but it was great fun.

We knitters always want to know how someone else does it. Do you use the throw the loop method or continental and why?

You know, I had to google this one...I only use continental as that's the way I was originally taught and wasn't really aware of the loop method.

What items do you enjoy knitting the most?

Anything for my children - I have 2 - Joe, 4 and Matilda, 18 months, unfortunately I don't have enough time to do everything I'd like for them. I love knitting soft squidgy yarn - its the best feeling!

Where do you see your shop in five years?

Using my experiences to add more interesting designs and being able to grow it to be in a position to do this full time! I work part time from home as a freelance internet marketing consultant so it would be great if I didn't have to do that!

What captivates you outside of the knitting world?

Arthouse cinema, travelling, my husband, my children, animals (3 cats and a dog), my garden, my house. Mickey, my husband is a house husband and he looks after Tildy whilst I'm working and Joe's at school, does all the cooking and also does amazing things in our veggie patch - even though this summer we've had more rain than we needed but even so its very abundant.


  1. Love your interviews, Dianne. Every so often I come and catch up, and I love knowing more about these women that I have corresponded with. Thanks so much for doing this!


  2. This is a great post - I enjoyed reading it as I sat here and knitted!