Saturday, January 14, 2012

A. Victoria Shop Feature and Giveaway

Can you believe it's already nearly the middle of January? January 2012! Christmas has come and gone with all of it's special activities, gatherings, and joys. Now we are settling back into normal life again. We're also settling into winter here in Missouri. We got our first snow a couple days ago and the temperature has been in the teens!


With the cold winter weather come sweaters, scarves, gloves, hats, and mittens. You don't have to settle for just any old hat or sweater though! A handmade knitted item is so much more special (and lots prettier too). I want to introduce you to a very special shop where you can find beautiful, soft and expertly crafted hand knitted items to choose from!

Ashley, the master knitter behind A. Victoria, is a personal friend of mine, and I can personally vouch for the superb quality of her work! And now let me open the door into this gorgeous shop full of soft yarn, knitting needles, and lots of talent and love.


Ashley says:
I have been knitting for 13 years this fall. My Parents home schooled me and my siblings. My Mama wanted me to learn the basics in the craft area and natural way of things (sewing, knitting, quilting, embroidery, canning, herbs, gardening, farming, homeopathic options and so on). She found a lady in our area that taught me knitting (the one thing that my Mama did not know how to do.) As it ended up I loved knitting and picked it up really fast. The first year I knitted every one in my family and close extended family hats.

We moved not too long after I learned the basics, so I taught myself some more of the stitches and how to read a pattern. A few years later my parents were finally able to find me another teacher and I went through a book with my teacher that taught a new pattern stitch each week. I loved learning the new patterns and getting to see how you can put things together to create something totally new.

My favorite thing to make are cables. During this time, my teacher thought I should take a knitting certification/knitting instructors certification class via mail. It was challenging and such a great experience. I made certain things that the certification organization asked for and in the end, I had to design something, write it out and send it to them. I designed a sweater, to my teachers amazement. Since then I have taught classes on and off, designed a hand full of patterns and started knitting items for people. I started the Etsy store, because people saw my items on family and wanted to know if I could make that item for them.

My husband loves colors and helps me pick out color combinations and come up with more ideas. My daughters, sisters, cousins, nieces and nephews are great models to try out patterns and allow me to work on pattern ideas. My Mama helps me with the lining of the purses. Little by little I have been adding more items to Etsy and coming up with more ideas. I love sitting down with natural yarns (merino, alpaca, silk, bamboo, cotton, and wool) they feel amazing. When I sit down with a skien of yarn and an idea, I love to see if the end product looks the way I visualized. I love seeing what others have designed and come up with, it sparks creativity and gives me more ideas. Knitting is classy and full of life and history. My girls (2 and 4), husband and I love to have movie night and the girls are used to the fact that I always have something on the couch with me, that I am working on. They love to sit on my lap and watch me knit, it makes it a slower process, but I love allowing them to do that with me. Whenever I am in a car I bring knitting with me and in the past (before children), I would read a book and knit. My sister thought I was crazy to read and knit. My favorite thing to do is get a good book on audio and listen to it, while working on a project. My daughters love to spend time with me, so we do a lot of fun projects with yarn, whether we knit, glue yarn to paper or they help me pick out yarns for a certain project. They are a great help.


My daughter 4 year old and my niece 6 years old are learning to knit this year and it has been fun seeing the craft passing on to the next generation. I am teaching in a public library right now. I also have some of my items in a local coffee shop.

The items that I knit are from others patterns or from things I have seen in the world around us. When I use a pattern already written I change something to make it slightly different (a thumb hole, a different cable, a different combination of stitches and so on). I want my items to have character and a personality of its own. I want it to make me feel cozy and warm. When someone wears that item, I want them to be able to feel cozy, warm, and comfy. As if they are sitting by a fire with a cup of coffee, not outside in the cold. My items will last and hold up, as long as they are cared for. I want my items to be a part of the new owners life, something that is connected to memories for them. I know that when I knit the items I have a feeling of love, warmth, and I hope that it passes on to the new owner. I want each item to have detail and uniqueness. The natural fibers last a lot longer then synthetics, so the items that I make out of natural fibers will last for a long time and continue to feel great.

5 things that I could never do with out in my craft:
Nice textiles, vibrant colors, cozy environment, my daughters for inspiration and encouragement, coffee. ;-)

Advice for someone that just started knitting:
Find a good teacher and make sure you have the basics down before you start playing with pattern, otherwise it is easy to get frustrated when you do not understand something.

Custom Orders:
I do take custom order, just contact me with what item and the color you want it. I will let you know what it will cost and we can go from there.

What else do I do?
I am a Mother of two little girls and I am beginning to homeschool them. We stay busy working on projects and activities with them, I also teach knitting 2 times a month, I help in our community with different groups and I am very involved in our church.



Aren't those items gorgeous?! I can do okay on basic knitting, but these things are WAY out of my depth! :) If you're looking for a new cozy sweater, hat, gloves or scarf for your self or a loved one, A. Victoria is the place to look!

You can also find Ashley in her Etsy shop, on Twitter & Facebook, or blogging about all of her wonderful new items on her blog. Go take a look around and then come back here for the giveaway!

I have a very wonderful giveaway to offer you today! Ashley is generously offering one of my readers a $20 gift code to her Artfire shop! Just follow the instructions on the Rafflecopter form below to enter the giveaway!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

48 comments:

God*n*Me3 said...

i would love the wool leg warmers they look lovely

Eliza said...

I would love the red ruffled scarf!

MunchTalk said...

i like the pink celtic heart fingerless handwarmers!


http://munchtalk.blogspot.com/
dailydealsjc@gmail.com

pinklady705 said...

I would like the Copper Knit Scarf for Adults

Michele P. said...

I would like the Blue and Cream Stocking Knit Winter Cap for Adults.

P.I.C.'s by Breanna said...

Hey Sarah!!
I love all of Ashely's work!! She does such a wonderful job!! I especially like her Celtic heart fingerless gloves!! :-)

Did you enjoy the little bit of snow we got??
Hope you are having a great day!!
Thanks for stopping by my blog!! :-)

Hope the comment goes through this time! :) I'm not sure I finished commenting last time... :{ Don't remember. :) Maybe that's way it never came through. :D

AmeliaB said...

I love the Dark Blue Celtic Cabled Knit Fingerless Gloves for Adults.

Savingwith Saveone said...

I'd like the Pink Celtic Heart Knit Fingerless Gloves for Women.
chavonne.harvey@yahoo.com

Melanie @ bear rabbit bear said...

I love the toddler knit newsboy hat! Thanks for the giveaway. I'd also like to invite you over to enter my family movie night give-away! http://www.bearrabbitbear.com/2012/01/family-move-night-give-away-mile-in-his.html

Grace Mae said...

This is what I love.
Grey Honeycomb Knit Fingerless Gloves and Neck Warmer for Women

Domestic Diva said...

I like the blue and cream stocking knit cap.

Candie L said...

I like the White and Pink Fuzzy Wuzzy Knit Scarf for Girls. Thank you

candieluster(at)gmail(dot)com

Jenn Spencer said...

I would love to have the Red Variegated Toddler Knit Newsboys Cap and Pink and Brown Cozy Baby Knit Blanket!

Thanks!
Jenn from How to Make Bows out of Ribbon
learnquilling@gmail.com

Remy said...

Any of the handbags. They are adorable!

cinnabubbles[at]gmail[dot]com

Ledford Land said...

Green sherbet baby owl hat

Cherriesjessilee@gmail.com

Laura said...

I would love the Toddler Newsboy Hat for my son!

Laurasu82 at yahoo.com

Sandy R said...

I think I could use the Mulberry Red Celtic Cabled Knit Fingerless Gloves for Women

The Zoo Keeper said...

I'd love to have this:
http://www.artfire.com/ext/shop/product_view/Avictoria/4053432/Hand_Knit_Alpaca_and_Acrylic_Pea_Pod_in_Sage_and_Rose_-/Knitting/Babies/Other

Heather! said...

I really like the Brown Beanie with Visor!
h4schaffer at gmail dot com

mommy2one126 said...

I like the tan ruffle scarf for women :)

mommy2one126@yahoo.com

trishrose said...

Black Celtic Knit Fingerless...

JBlanton said...

dark brown teddy bear earflap hat

joyfulheart26@hotmail.com said...

love the Grey Honeycomb Knit Fingerless Gloves

Mama Zen said...

I adore the Pink Celtic Heart Knit Fingerless Gloves for Women!

Kristin said...

The green Scarf

Karen said...

I really like the Pink Rose Variegated Cabled Knit Fingerless Gloves for Women.
Thanks, Karen
lemontart5kb at gmail dot com

nzrd said...

Giraffe hat and diaper set :)

Stephanie said...

I love the Pink Celtic Heart Knit Fingerless Gloves for Women
Pink Celtic Heart Knit Fingerless gloves.

metrocoastmom@gmail.com

one frugal lady said...

the Black and Tan Baby Owl Hat for Newborn is super cute!
onecheaplady@yahoo.com

Nancy said...

I like the Tan and Brown Giraffe Hat.

Nancy
allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

Unknown said...

I love the dark blue knit neck warmer!

Grace Mae said...

SARAH I clicked the wrong button.

I don't have facebook. Sorry is there a way to cancel that entry???

Elizabeth Braun said...

I like the Pink and Cream Baby Girls Knit Hat

Grace Mae said...

I like the Cabled Forest Green and Cream Fingerless Gloves

RaettigFamily said...

Pink Curly Top Knit Hat for Girls...

toledomama88 said...

I really like the pink, brown, and tan striped cabled girls knit purse. Cute colors.

Karen F said...

I love the Dark Red Lacy Knit Infinity Scarf for Women

Karen F

deanna said...

fave: Grey Honeycomb Knit Fingerless Gloves and Neck Warmer for Women
xxoxoxo

Belinda said...

I'd love to have the Green Acorn Newborn hat :)

jhitomi said...

Love the dark blue knit neckwarmer. And all the handbags.
jhbalvin at gmail dot com

shala_darkstone said...

I'd love to have the Pink Rose Variegated Cabled Knit Fingerless Gloves for Women.

eclairre said...

i like the pink celtic heart fingerless handwarmers!

amanda hoffman said...

Dark Brown Teddy Bear Earflap Hat

esluka said...

I like the Blue and Cream Stocking Knit Hat! Erinn A

Busy Tennessee Mom said...

I would love the Red Ruffled Scarf for Women

cw said...

The dark red infinity scarf is gorgeous

Melanie Ski said...

Forest Glen Cabled hat. LOVE the giraffe hats too but dont have a little one anymore to wear it!
Melanie

Sassanada said...

I love the beanie with a visor! I've been looking for one of those!