B. Thibault's designs merge the classic with the modern in a wonderfully wearable way. Each piece in her recent collection for Knitscene
magazine features a unique, signature element.
Whether it's the intricate cable design on the front edge and cuffs of the Willamette Coat, the lovely lace panel on the Marketa Mitts, or the jaunty tied collar on the Toulouse Pullover, these designs have that certain something extra that sets them apart.
Get to know Leah a little bit in this profile:Ms.
Cleaver Knits it New
Thibault wants to have her cake and eat it, too. "I really like the traditional Susie Homemaker
kind of things, but I also consider myself a very modern person," she admits.
Finance by day, baking by night. The self-appointed "Ms. Cleaver" is just as
likely to be building a complex spreadsheet as she is to be spinning wool or sewing
an apron. And she wouldn't have it any other way.
up in Northern California in a family full of home-economics teachers, crafting
was literally in Leah's blood. She learned to sew at a very young age and spent
high school making her own clothes well before the DIY movement was "cool"
again. When she went to Willamette College in Oregon to study theater, she was
left with little time to sew, and her crafting pursuits fell by the wayside.
Despite a love for crafts, Leah hadn't tried her hand at knitting until after
college. She had moved to Maine for a theater internship, and Leah remembers, "There
were about nine interns, and by December all of them except for me had been
Leah had no interest in learning, but as a gag gift her fellow thespians
got her a "learn to knit kit" from Michael's Crafts. "It was a teddy bear, and
I knit it and thought, 'oh, this is kinda fun!' So I just kept going and now everybody
else doesn't do it anymore!" It didn't take long for Leah to jump from reading patterns
to designing her own. She immediately began experimenting with her own toy
patterns, making baby gifts for family and friends.
The first sweater Leah knit was the "Anthropologie-inspired capelet" by Julia
Allen. However, Leah wanted to use some DK-weight yarn from her stash instead
of the pattern-specified bulky. "So I just redid the math and realized, 'Oh,
this is not that hard.' The math made sense to me. So that opened the door to
me to be able to say, 'This is something that's doable.'" Leah shared her
version of the pattern online, and it continues to be one of her most popular
designs on Ravelry to this day.
In late 2007, Leah began documenting her crafting exploits on her blog Ms.
she's subtitled My
Midcentury Life in the 21st Century.
It's a nod to her dual personality, a modern-day June
Cleaver who has a full-time job and certainly never bothers to wear pearls
while vacuuming.—Laura Birek, from Knitscene Winter 2012
The Toulouse Pullover is my favorite. I'd knit it in a rich teal, or a dark garnet; something about this design makes me want to branch out from my usual grays and charcoals!
To learn more about Leah and to knit her designs, get yourself a copy of Knitscene Winter 2012