One of the things I love most about the Indie GAL (Gift-A-Long) is the chance to discover and/or promote other designers’ work. Over the course of the GAL I’ll be publishing gift-knitting related interviews with designers whose work I admire.

ac-woodAurélie Colas publishes wonderful adult and children’s home/toy, garment, and accessory patterns. Check out her Ravelry page here.

Steph: What’s your favorite part of the GAL?
Aurélie: I thoroughly enjoy the camaraderie, and all the sharing and generosity which flows through the threads. The chatter can sometimes feel overwhelming, and there is often more browsing and chatting than knitting going on (at least for me!), but it is great to feel connected to so many makers around the world. I always enjoy discovering new-to-me designers, and knitting from other people’s patterns. It is also extremely inspiring and re-energising to see what everyone is making. Can you tell I like the GAL very much?

I love it too 🙂  Have you participated before this year?
Yes, I have participated to every edition so far! I was on the Pinterest team during the first GAL, and part of the mod team the second year.

I had to step down from moderator last year as my schedule was not so much GAL-compatible. I participated as a designer and knitter then, and got quite a few projects done!

This year again was too hectic in the “real life” to re-join as a mod, so, once again, I am joining “solely” as a designer and knitter, and chatterbox when I can.

Awesome!! What are you planning on knitting?
Like I wrote above, part of what I really like about the GAL is knitting from other designer’s patterns. A Baby Tiered Jacket, by Lisa Chemery, is currently on my needles and should be finished soon. It will be a gift for dear friends across the pond, whom I haven’t seen in many years.

I have many other projects planned, which include the Mermaid Darkly, by Yelena Dasher, to knit out of handspun; a Wee Blackface Sheep (probably the version 2, which is knit in the round), by Janice Anderson, for which I hope I also have time to complete the adorable Christmas outfit: Rudolph Ramdeer.

My to-knit list also includes two pairs of fingerless mitts (one for a man, one for a woman), for which I haven’t made any executive decision. Maybe your Wrought Mitts?
Part of me would like to attempt an “Opadoo challenge”, but I am not sure how realistic this is. I wouldn’t fail for the lack of must-knit patterns by participating designers though (so many lovely things!), but I might have to give up on sleep entirely! (What about you, are you attempting the Opadoo challenge?)

That Opadoo challenge (where you knit one pattern from each of eight categories) is nuts, lol.  I’ll be lucky to knit at least on project! Which of your patterns do you think make the best gifts?
I guess it depends on the recipient? Hobby Horse for Little Knights would be a hit for most of the children. At least, I can attest that it is a strong favourite for any child who has been visiting!

If you are looking for a cute cardigan for little ones, Romane and Roman is a quick, yet interesting knit. The cabled yoke is knit sideways with (easy) short rows to give it a lovely shape on the shoulders, and the rest zooms off the needles as it is knit top-down and seamless. The shape is very cute too (if I may say so myself!)

However, if the recipient is grown up and has got a soft spot for sciences (computer science, mathematics, genetics, etc), you may want to look into my collection of socks (and a hat) inspired by British scientists and engineers. The hat is a quick knit (XNOR, sized from baby to adult). The socks are more involved, but would probably satisfy those looking for interesting constructions, or intricate designs.

For a very quick and practical gift, I would recommend the Mini Hap Cowl. It is an easy knit, which works great with scraps and mini-skeins, and makes for a great little cowl: it fits nicely in the jacket, keeps the neck warm and doesn’t add any bulk. My children love theirs, and the friends for whom I knit one use them a lot too (and so do I!).

Finally, if you are looking for a heirloom gift, the intricacy of the Woodcarving, or the whimsy of the Sheepy Draughts, may be just what you need?

Thank you so much Aurélie!

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Photos © Aurélie Colas

Don’t forget to check out the Indie Design Gift-A-Long group on Ravelry to join in the fun!