Thursday, October 20, 2011

Right place, right time?

So, yeah - its been a while since my last post - but not as long as the time before that!! And I have been busy!!

September saw #1 son starting Timbits hockey and in a moment of weakness, I decided to knit the whole team a toque each to match their team uniform... somehow I managed to knit 16 hats in just over a week (the rugrats might have had to amuse themsleves a bit during that time - I was a woman possessed!). Anyhow - they were well received and now normal service can resume (until, that is, the coaches decided they wanted matching ones at practice yesterday)!!

You may also remember the cowl pattern that I created to raise funds for our local play park? Well - it has raised about $200 so far - which is fantastic! Most of that was from sales at two local yarn stores - one in particular, which had a sample of the cowl and pattern on their cash desk over the summer.

It was on one of my trips to this yarn store which resulted in a conversation about whether I would be interested in designing some more patterns that could be used in kits for the store. I didn't have to think too long about this - the initial brief was simple and to the point - design a baby hat in 3 sizes which would use less than 33g of a sport weight yarn.

So - I took home some yarn, got my note book out and got cracking - and one week later, here is the result:

I call it Coriolis because that is is the name of the force which causes hurricanes to rotate (in a shape similar to the pattern on the hat). It's in kits now at The Loop yarn store in Kensington, Calgary and is also available as the pattern only through Ravelry (or course!!).

The design was very well received and the next request was for fingerless mitts using 50g or less of a DK-weight yarn and when I took them in for an initial look, a comment was made about transferring the pattern to a cowl. A little bit of tweaking was required to fit it into the yarn limit, but once that was finished, I made a hat as well.. and so the Forestry Collection was born (coming soon in kit form and available now in Ravelry)!

So - was it a case of right place, right time? I have wondered for a while if I could design more, and possibly even make this hobby of mine pay (or at least breakeven!!). This opportunity has certainly got the creative juices flowing (watch this space) and most of the knitting I have done since then has been of my own design...

It has also presented some learning opportunites - such as the importance of gauge and what happens when you use alternative yarns. I also definitively proved that I officially knit loosely, so have made a mental note to almost always use a smaller needle than recommended on patterns or at least to think about swatching before spending too long on a project that might not end up fitting!!! ;o)

Its a start, and who knows where this will go? Stay tuned for more adventures in knitting design c/o yours truly - bye for now!!