The Sweatshop of Love Blog

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April, 2011

Anniversary Giveaway #2!

A HUGE thank you to everyone that entered, tweeted, and facebooked my Traverse City Tube Top pattern and yarn giveaway this week! The lucky winner is:

#9! Miss Karen of The Butterfly’s Wing! Who said, ‘Personally, I don’t think I could pull off the tube top, but either of my daughters would rock one big time!’

I’ve met bother Karen’s beautiful daughters and she is totally right! Karen has been emailed and will now just have to figure out WHICH daughter will be getting the Traverse City Tube Top!

Not you? That is ok because it’s time for…

Anniversary Giveaway #2!

More summer knitting patterns?! You got it!

The Loop Entrelac Tank

The Loop Entrelac Tank is a pretty summer top with entrelac straps and a loose, A-line body. Throw a blazer over it in the office or rock it solo on a Sunday afternoon, this versatile knit will have you looking awesome all summer long.

Again, I’m giving away the pattern and the Knit Picks Simply Cotton Sport you’ll need to make it! Looking at that yarn makes me want to make another one for myself! Already have the pattern? That is ok! You can still win the yarn!

There are Three Ways To Enter:

  1. Leave a comment on this post! Tell me how you will rock this knit out.
  2. Follow me on twitter and tweet this giveaway mentioning me, @sweatshopoflove, and linking this blog post. Come back and leave me another comment telling me you did! You do not need to be a new follower.
  3. Like The Sweatshop on facebook and post this giveaway on your facebook page, linking my facebook page and this blog post. Come back and leave me another comment telling me you did! You do not need to be a new facebook liker.

You have until Sunday night to enter! I’ll be announcing the winner on Monday, May 2nd.

And don’t forget! All Sweatshop patterns, kits, and knits are 30% off! Use coupon code SOL5YEARS in both my Etsy shop and Ravelry designer page to get this big discount. The coupon expires Sunday, so get up on it!

Thanks again and good luck!

The Tinfoil Tiara Brigade

I fell in love with Prince William in 1997. I was 13. My friends and I had a Princess Diana funeral slumber party so we could make sure we woke up in time to see Prince William walking behind the casket.

Looking back at this, yes, it’s pretty morbid and terrible. But when you are in love you have to seize any opportunity to see the love of your life that you can.

Every little girl has princess fantasies, and having the future King of England be adorable and YOUR OWN AGE just made it too easy to play these out.

Until now.

Will and Kate

If it can’t be me I’m glad it’s this super hot, stylish, adorable, and seemingly very proper girl with amazing hair and boots. Instead of being super bitter I get to just be pumped.

I’m PUMPED, ok?! Like, seriously pumped for this wedding. Reading People.com, wanting to knit the royal wedding and look for Kate’s face on my jelly beans pumped! It’s letting me live out my princess fantasies without actually having to do anything!

But I did something.

My Tinfoil Tiara

I’m not even exactly sure how it started, but over on the old twitter the girls started making fun of me for my over-enthusiasm for the royal wedding. Mainly Amy. The some of the girls started coming to my defense! We formed the Tinfoil Tiara Brigade. We share the most ridiculous royal wedding-related stories we can find. Check it out here. It’s AMAZING.

Braid Cable Band, Tinfoil Bow

And we are nothing without our tinfoil tiaras! Mine is a simple braid cable with a tinfoil bow tied on it. I’d be lying if I said this wasn’t cute. I was shooting for ridiculous and landed on strangely wearable! There is a life lesson here.

Since I’ll be traveling during the prime time rebroadcast of the wedding, which takes place on Friday if you aren’t quite into this hubbub, I’ll be setting my alarm for 3am to watch it live. Oh who am I kidding? The fact that I’ll be on an Amtrak Friday night is just keeping me from watching it again! I’d be up at 3 no matter what!

And I’ll be live tweeting while wearing my tiara! The Tinfoil Tiara Brigade will be right there with me. Amy will not. But the rest of us are going to rally and make it happen. It’s going to be the tweeting event OF THE CENTURY!

I’m just glad I’ve got a headpiece to make it memorable.

Knitting in the Bar Anniversary Party!

30% Off All Patterns and Giveaways!

To help celebrate The Sweatshop of Love’s 5 year anniversary, use coupon code SOL5YEARS on Ravelry and Etsy for 30% off everything there!

This week on The Sweatshop of Love Blog I’ll be giving away my The Loop Entrelac Top and Traverse City Tube Top patterns and the yarn you’ll need to make them! Be sure to check over there throughout the week to enter and see if you won.

You’ll have more of a shot at winning if you follow The Sweatshop on twitter and if you are a fan on facebook, so get on it!

Knitting in the Bar Anniversary Party!

Like we really need an excuse to drink some beers while knitting in public, but this is actually a good one! To help celebrate The Sweatshop of Love’s 5 year anniversary we are going to knock back a few and get our knitting on!

I’ll also be piecing out soon to spend the summer in Minneapolis so we need to spend as much time together as possible before I don’t see y’all till the fall.

I hope you can join us Friday May 13th at 8pm at Green Eye Lounge on Milwaukee and Western. This is a change of location from our normal knitting bar, but Streetside let us down at Christmas so I thought we should shake things up.

Green Eye has no kitchen, but our beloved Tamale Guy swings around often and if you want to grab some food and bring it in

Bring your knitting and some cash for beers (Green Eye is cash only!) and let’s do this anniversary thing up right!

RSVP over at The Sweashop’s Anniversary Party event page on Facebook!

As always, email me at allyson [at] thesweatshopoflove [dot] com with any questions and to sign up for a class. I can’t wait to get started!

– Allyson

The Sweatshop of Love’s Spring Class Schedule

Group Knitting: Come get help starting a project, finishing a project, picking a project, picking materials, or learning something new! These classes are here for you to make up class time with, especially missed Holiday Present Prep classes, and any scheduled classes you can’t make it to can be rescheduled during these class times. All of these classes are from 7-9pm and are $15.

Tuesday May 3
Thursday May 5
Wednesday May 11
Thursday May 12

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One on One Classes: Is there something you are interested in knitting that you don’t see listed here? Pick a project or a new skill and email me to set up a one on one class! I generally schedule classes weekday nights 7-9pm and weekend days in two hour blocks between 10am-4pm. Send me a few dates and times that work for you. I will match our schedules, pick a time that works for both of us, and give you a class outline. One on one classes are $20 per hour; most classes are two hours long.

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Knitting Book Club: We’re reading Once Again to Zelda by Marlene Wagman-Geller for our Monday, May 2nd meet up. If you are interested in joining the book club, send me an email. Please don’t come with knitting questions as I won’t be teaching anything (so the book club can be free of course), just come to knit and chat about our book!

Please note that all classes are held at New Wave Coffee at 2557 N Milwaukee Ave / 3103 W Logan Blvd in Logan Square unless otherwise noted.

Anniversary Sale and Giveaway #1!

It’s The Sweatshop of Love’s FIFTH anniversary week (yeah, I’m taking a week, damn it!) and to celebrate I’m having a big sale!

All Sweatshop patterns, kits, and knits are 30% off! Use coupon code SOL5YEARS in both my Etsy shop and Ravelry designer page to get this big discount. The coupon expires Sunday, so get up on it!

Giveaway #1!

I’ve decided that if we start knitting for summer it will show up, so I’m going to help the process by giving away patterns and yarn for two of my most popular summer designs! First up is the Traverse City Tube Top:

Traverse City Tube Top

Traverse City Tube Top is a quick knit cotton top with a back button closure and breezy stitch patterned body. It’s really hot on it’s own and still pretty hot over a long sleeved tee.

I’m giving away the pattern AND the Knit Picks Comfy Sport yarn you’ll need to make it! They’ve got a heap of new colors so I’m pretty jealous of the winner of this giveaway. Already have the pattern? That is ok! You can still win the yarn!

There are Three Ways To Enter:

  1. Leave a comment on this post! Tell me how you will rock this knit out.
  2. Follow me on twitter and tweet this giveaway mentioning me, @sweatshopoflove, and linking this blog post. Come back and leave me another comment telling me you did! You do not need to be a new follower.
  3. Like The Sweatshop on facebook and post this giveaway on your facebook page, linking my facebook page and this blog post. Come back and leave me another comment telling me you did! You do not need to be a new facebook liker.

You’ve got until Wednesday night to enter! I’ll be announcing the winner of this giveaway on Thursday, when I announce my Giveaway #2!

This is just a little way for me to show my gratitude to you all for your support and encouragement over the years. Thank you thank you thank you thank you!

And good luck!

The Sweatshop Turns 5!

And, magically, The Sweatshop of Love is 5 years old.

I have a hard time imagining I’ve been doing anything for 5 years, much less owning my own tiny business. But here we are! In 2006 I graduated from Columbia College Chicago with a Fiction Writing major and no idea what I was going to do. So I put up a CraigsList post claiming I could teach people to knit. I threw together a MYSPACE listing classes. And that is how I operated until 2008.

I really had no idea when I started that The Sweatshop would ever be anything but a way for me to hang out with knitters and be creative when I wasn’t slaving/wasting away in corporate real estate. But in the summer of 2008 I finally clued into it’s potential and quit my job. I got a real website that I made by watching youtube how-to videos. I started this blog shortly after. I started building a mailing list and an etsy shop. I started writing my own patterns for classes, building a viewership outside of Chicago, getting in on social media.

Every year of The Sweatshop’s existence has experienced exponential growth, and I’m planning on keeping it that way.

I have all of you to thank for that. When I say this has been trial and error it’s seriously an understatement. I’ve never taken a business class. I’ve never taken any kind of class to help me get to where I’ve gotten – I’ve just done it.

Very, very simply: Thank you. I have students that remember when I taught at the original Filter, and customers that buy everything I’ve ever put out. It’s you that keeps me going and I love you for it.

The Loop Entrelac Top

Figured out where I’m going with this?! The LEAST I can do is have a big sale and give some fun things away!

Traverse City Tube Top

We’re talking YARN and PATTERNS and all kinds of fun things. Be sure to check back on Monday for our first giveaway for the week and to get in on my big sale! And if you like The Sweatshop of Love on Facebook and follow me on Twitter you’ve got even more chance to win.

Have a great weekend, y’all! Happy knitting.