Saturday, August 1, 2009


Hi to everyone who looks at my blog! After months of being a delinquent poster, I'm taking a few extra minutes this morning to do a very, VERY brief update!

This summer has been rainy, busy, inspiring and tiring. I'm sure it's a similar story for all y'all out there. For emmalinedesigns, the biggest adventure has been my first two showings at the Boston South End Open Market. Yes, I finally set up my wares and sold straight to the public. It's quite a lot of logistical planning to essentially build a boutique in an hour and then break it down 6 hours later! It has been a success in that I'm learning a lot about what people want to buy (things that are pink. aprons. cookies) and how they like to shop. Great experiences!

However, my total sales have not met my goals so that is a bummer. But practice makes perfect so I have to get back up on that horse and try again! I know I will for sure be showing at a 2 day event in September, but more on that later. In the meantime, a few photos to sate your curiosity!

And, as always, thank you for your love & support of my little venture.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Crazy Blogger

Hi friends! Inspired by a wonderful Monday evening in which I was given a chance to teach a yoga class I have started another little blog! I have had the idea for quite some time to integrate my love of yoga with my love of knitting. I'm not yet sure how it will all pan out, but I know that I want to generate something with the name YogaKnits. And I could hardly believe that the email account, Etsy shop and blogspot address were all available! Talk about kismet. The moment I got home from yoga tonight I snagged all three entities and it feels awesome.

I also have fiber happenings to report, of course. Last weekend, on May 9th, I went to the Hudson River Valley for a sheep shearing! The Martha's Vineyard Fiber Farm is a wonderful venture that offers knitters a chance to participate in the fiber fun by purchasing a share of wool in the form of roving or spun yarn. I honestly don't know as much about this as some of my friends, but I do know that the idea is to follow the tenets of Community Supported Agriculture, the types of food collectives that have sprung up around the country to help connect people to the farms that supply our sustenance. I have long been a huge fan of gardening, organics, and the Slow Food movement. This awesome fiber farm fits right in to the bigger picture of building a healthy and satisfying relationship with our precious natural environment.

But it's not just all philosophy, it is downright fun! I loved the pastoral setting of the farm and thoroughly enjoyed the potluck, live entertainment, wool dying demonstration, sheep nursery, drop spindle spinnning, and all-around friendly, fibery vibe of the day.

Hopefully you can tell from the photos and smiling faces that this is one fantastic way to spend a Saturday afternoon. Can't wait to see everyone join the fun next year!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Spring is Here & Dalai Lama!

I can't believe it's been nearly four weeks since my last post! I've been busy as a bee and enjoying life, spurts of great weather, time with friends, and readying myself for my upcoming trip to Arizona.

The blossoms are out on all the trees and I'm loving the New England foliage that we just don't have in California. I don't think I've ever seen a dogwood tree and it has quickly become my favorite flower. I love the shades of cream and pink lining the streets wherever I go.

Another recent spring highlight for me was the chance to see His Holiness the Dalai Lama at Foxboro Stadium. I have been interested in the philosophies of Tibetan Buddhism for many years and was very moved to hear them delivered by such a great man and thinker. The sound of the Dalai Lama's laughter was absolutely heartwarming and inspiring. I was taken with an incredible sense of calm and presence that seemed to emanate from him even across hundreds of yards and 16,000 other beings.

The event benefitted the Tibetan Association of Boston and their efforts to build a new Tibetan Cultural Association. The Dalai Lama seemed to enjoy himself as well...he seemed to relish putting on a New England Patriots cap as he started his keynote speech on the Path to Peace and Happiness. The wish of Buddhists is to find an end to their suffering and the suffering of all other sentient beings. So I leave you with my own wish for your happiness, joy, and fulfillment in life!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Fresh Designs

I'm really excited about the new designs that I'm working on here in the studio as I get ready for the Boston South End Open Market and all the other craft shows that I hope to participate in this year.

All the aspects of my process are delightful to me: designing graphics, screenprinting, sewing, and choosing colors for inks and bags and linings. The hard part, as a one woman show, is to be as efficient and effective as possible. I have to thank my friend Christina for recommending a great shortcut - making a digital mock up for new screen designs! As I'm working on the graphics, I import my image into photoshop and place the new design on an existing bag. It's pretty awesome.

These samples are incredibly rough drafts, but it's a sneak peek into what I'm working on! And I'm open to suggestions about what you might like to see on the bags. My friend Alison thought a pterodactyl is a good idea and I agree.

Have a great weekend and thanks for stopping by!

Friday, April 10, 2009

My Birthday Already?

I turn 29 today! It's a young age, I know, but it's also a very real feeling that my twenties are, in fact, coming to an end. In preparation for today I made a list of my accomplishments since last year. I think it's a good way to appreciate where I am and to be grateful for all that I have and have done. Here are a few highlights:

Got accepted into a Masters program at ASU (though I didn't enroll)
Moved from Phoenix to Providence without having a job lined up
Bought my first bed frame
Opened my Etsy shop
Learned how to drive in the snow
Gave myself permission to relax!
Learned how to screenprint
Got a really cute new phone
Started writing my business plan

My philosophy in life is that there is no place to arrive, no real finish line to cross. It's not what you have, it's what you do and how you act in any circumstance that defines your self and your character. 29 is just another number and another opportunity to create an exciting and fulfilling year!

And above all, I am so grateful for all the amazing family and friends I have in my life. I love you all and appreciate you more than you could ever know.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Weekend Projects

Another hectic and productive week. Though I battled a persistent cold this week I managed to have lots of adventures and make some new work. I am definitely a branch from the workaholic side of the Cherry Family Tree. We don't really understand the idea of "resting" or "relaxing." This is definitely one of the reasons I knit - to keep my hands working at all times.

In my efforts to create new imagery for my screenprints I visited the RISD Nature Lab. The lab was founded in 1937 and has an amazing collection of dried plants, bones, shells, and yes, taxonomied animals. I was a little nervous when I picked up a dried out turtle and it was really unpleasant opening the case full of dried crabs and seahorses. Think of a package of dried cuttlefish - overwhelmingly salty! So I found myself sticking to pieces of dried fruit and seed pods and other flora.

I also used my weekend to test a needle case design for double pointed sets. These little guys get lost all the time and I wanted a small case that can wrangle them in style. I love the look of the prototype but it needs a top flap to keep the needles from slipping out when the case is closed up. I had a near disaster in the car the first day! So it's back to the drawing board.

I also want to point out the adorable fruit patterned fabric I used for the pocket. I love the springtime colors. Speaking of spring, why is it still 40 degrees out!?! Happy knitting & living to you all!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Sweater Project

So I am totally behind the eight ball here, but I am really excited to be starting a wool cardigan that I hope to finish before the fall. I am a huge lover of all things from Interweave Press and I found a great cardigan pattern from Ann Budd's upcoming book, Simple Style. The design is by Cecily Glowik MacDonald. She makes the most darling patterns and I can't wait to see what she comes up with next! By the way, the pattern was also published in the Winter 2008 copy of Knitscene, as pictured here.

It has been far too long since I tackled a sweater project! I've been spending my time and yarn dollars on hats, scarves, and gloves lately. I fell in love with this pattern, an adorable round yoke design which lets you knit the body in one piece on a circular needle. I decided to swap out yarns (as I always do) and snapped up five balls of Lambs Pride Super Wash in Japanese Plum, a delicious deep purple color. Though I did knit a swatch in the beginning, I haven't checked my gauge since I started knitting, which is bad, but things seem to be going very well so far! The color is wacky because I took one photo at night with bad lighting. But I just had to show everyone that progress is indeed being made!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Lime Green Hat

This first winter in New England was pretty darn rough! Lots and lots of snow, temperatures in the teens, my first pair of rubbery winter boots, and finally, a really good reason to knit. Hats became my favorite winter project because they are so fast and satisfying. I found a really cute pattern on Ravelry for hats with button bands. I wanted a brim that folded up so it would look more like a fabulous French cloche and less of a beanie. So of course I felt the need to completely make up my own pattern and modify it and do my own thing!

I found some awesome colors of Sheep Shop Number 2 on sale at my local yarn shop. I snapped it all up and this newest hat is by far my favorite object of the season. The brim is knit in seed stitch in a flat piece, then you join to knit in the round for the rest of the hat. Once it was all knitted up, I folded the brim up and tacked the extra flap down with a huge wooden button.

While I was doing my self-portrait photo session I realized that my new coffee mug looks adorable with my hat! The mug is from Orla Kiely's new line of home goods from Target. I hear they're selling out fast so I'm glad I snapped one up while I had the chance. It's a huge mug, practically big enough for soup. But I use it to sip coffee and then tea all day long at work. This is how I manage to stay up so late and wake up so early. Yay for caffeine!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


Has it really been almost a month since my last post? I really hadn't fully realized how busy I've been! Aside from lots and lots of working and cooking, I have been knitting up quite a storm lately. I finished a couple of hats (no photos yet - maybe next post?) and just purchased yarn for a new sweater featured in the latest KnitScene.

In the world of emmalinedesigns, I posted a few new items since my last post and I updated etsy to let everyone know that I make knitting bags! After trying out lots of different product ideas, like a yoga tote bag and baby blocks and aprons, I decided that I will focus on my number one love - knitting. I hope I can eventually give attention to all my other concepts and designs, but in the meantime I want to play with the graphics for the bags and add some more bells and whistles so that I am offering the coolest knitting totebag you can find! Click to check it out.

I've recently been really obsessed with jellyfish and I went to the New England Aquarium last weekend to do some up close and personal research. These creatures are magical and repellent at the same time! I took photos of the prettiest ones:

These big, blue blobs on the left look amazing in their large group, like glowy, floaty pillows in the dark. And I love the long, wispy tentacles on this pair of sea nettles. They look like they're nearly dancing, and they're definitely having fun (if only they had brains!).

And here is my beginning attempt at actually drawing these awesome creatures!

In a little design brainstorming with my sister she told me a great story about swimming somewhere in Israel and a man told her the jellyfish there are "sweet" He was trying to explain that they were not poisonous and wouldn't sting her. But from now on, we will think of them as "sweet"

Thanks for checking in again. I am committed to posting the crazy design happenings more often, so I'll see you soon!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Ready for Spring

It's just turned to February 15th and I enjoyed the sun and clear skies of this year's Valentine's Day. I hope everyone had a lovely Saturday with their sweeties and loved ones.

With most of the snow finally thawing and some days reaching nearly 5o degrees, I'm getting eager for my first New England spring. I'm finding myself drawn to brighter colors and lighter textures in anticipation of warmer weather. On a recent trip to my favorite fabric store, I picked up a gorgeous assortment of peach linen, robin's egg blue twill, shell pink silk, and lime green linen. The soft pastels look wonderful next to brighter accessories like the purple ribbon and orange zipper that I'll use to make a new round of bags and pouches.

I was especially excited about finding the lime green linen because it is one of my favorite colors and textures. I was so in love that I bought the whole bolt! I feel like a 'real' textile artist to have a bolt instead of just a cut piece of fabric. It's uniquely luxurious and gratifying. I am almost finished with a sweet kitchen apron I made with it and I know it will make its way into the linings of my tote bags.

On the knitting front, I'm slaving away at several projects at once, including this green lace scarf that was started months ago. It is slow going on size 3 Addi Turbo lace needles. But the color is that amazing yellow, limey green and htat's what keeps me knitting. The yarn is Malabrigo lace weight one-ply merino wool and it is beautifully soft. I can't wait to finish and wear it for spring!

Stay tuned for lots of new finished products, including my yoga tote which I am so excited about!

Friday, February 6, 2009

New York City

So I had my second Manhattan adventure and it was fantastic and exciting. Due to my awesome job at Rag&Bone, I was able to attend the New York International Gift Fair at the Javitz Convention Center. Our booth was absolutely fabulous and in the prestigious and lovely Studio Section of the show. I wanted to check out the show as part of my "market research" efforts for emmalinedesigns. I was fully expecting to see things that looked like my work, but fortunately, I did not! Of course that just means that people who make handmade, screenprinted bags are probably showing at smaller, crafty type venues since it is very time consuming and therefore hard to offer at wholesale prices and in large quantity.

I got to meet the lovely ladies of Hello, Lucky!, a beautiful line of screenprinted goods based in San Francisco. I was also excited about seeing the full line from the NY firm Hable Construction. I've been eyeing their screenprinted canvas totes since I first saw them at the Persimmon boutique in Hawi, Hawaii. The gift show was as huge as I thought it would be, and after running a short marathon up and down the aisles, I decided to hit the streets and head down to Soho.

I was hoping to make the most of my few hours in the city and my first destination was to Sullivan Street to visit Purl for yarn and Purl Patchwork for fabric. Even though I restrained myself from making any purchases, I loved seeing all the yummy colors of yarn and the fun printed linens from Kokka. My favorite had cars on a purple background - so fun!

I headed East (which I thought was South because I totally don't understand New York yet) I found myself at the New Museum of Modern Art on the Bowery. I got my trusty ASU school ID out for a student discount. I love that card for not having an expiration date! The exhibit was great - modern paintings by Mary Heilmann, but I swear it was the bathroom tile that was worth the price of admission!

I took some other photos of inspiring New York sights, a mural in a school playground that looks like broken glass and a huge cluster of balloons hanging from a tree like gigantic colorful grapes. What a perfect day!

Monday, February 2, 2009


On January 18th my sister and I drove from Providence to Washington DC through a major snow storm to be in our nation's capital for the inauguration of Barack Obama! We have both been on pins and needles throughout the primaries and listened to hours and hours of NPR during the race with McCain. As a student of political science and a budding entrepreneur, I feel personally invested in the fate of our nation and I believe that we finally got this election right and have a great man taking office.

The trip to DC was awesome, cold, and exciting! I met new friends, walked miles and miles around town, visited my cousin Teresa, and joined the millions of people on the National Mall to watch the inauguration on Tuesday morning. Sunday night we arrived in town and after settling into the apartment of our friend from California, our first stop was the Washington Monument. We were there on Monday and Tuesday, too, so it very much felt like the home base for our trip. Then, on Monday, we went out to Takoma Park and had lunch with our second cousin, Teresa Rainey. She has an adorable dog and adorable house and I hadn't seen her in ages so it was great to catch up.

The day before the inauguration we milled around the mall and hit all the major points of interest, quickly. This was our chance to get up close to the capitol building and see all the flags and swags and what not decorating the arches. We didn't really go inside anything - security and lines and crowds were totally prohibitive! Nah, we just burned calories by walking the vast expanses between the gorgeous buildings. Isn't the capitol building so small? And that's me trying to look especially fab on the steps of the Supreme Court. Let's get some really lefty judges in there and make some ch-ch-ch-changes.

On the big day, we got up super early, went to four wrong places before finally figuring out we needed to walk about two miles around the mall to get near the Lincoln Memorial and Washington Monument, which is where we watched a big Obama on giant jumbotrons! And in the evening, exhausted but still excited, we had dinner at the famed Ben's Chili Bowl. Sorry to say the food was not awesome, but it was pretty cool to be there anyway! Note that there is a red, white, and blue Obama ice sculpture behind us - the folks at Bens love Obama. They even added him to the list of people they serve for free (the only other person on that list is Bill Cosby).

The whole trip was a smashing success and I loved every freezing cold minute of it! Now it's time to get down to business and all do our parts to help re-create the US into a nation we can all be proud of. Cheers to us all!