The Ugly Truth Behind Beautiful Knits

Thank you everyone for all of your kind comments about my new soon-to-be-released knitting book! And yes, as many of you have guessed, the theme of the design collection is one of my favorite inspirations...

l e a v e s    

(Of course!)

Many times in the past, I have wondered how certain designers get from a ball of yarn to a finished garment. I don't know if my process is comparable to anyone else's but I thought I would share a brief look at how I create.. in case you were curious.

Behind this beautiful stack of finished knits...

are things that are not very beautiful at all. Some would call them downright messy.

First is the large, unwieldy pile of knitted swatches.

All of these little knitted scraps represent new yarns tested, and multiple variations of different stitch patterns. In some instances, I even knit one complete prototype of a small item such as a mitten, sock or hat, and then perfect the look of it the second time around.

Then there is the big mess of a design notebook.

Although it looks like a huge chaotic disaster, there really is a method to my madness here. 

I promise.

This notebook is packed full of little sketches, ideas, and pattern instructions that I wrote down as I knit. All ideas and notes for each pattern are divided into sections, and the yarn labels are even stapled with each design.

You see? It is organized even though it doesn't look like it.

This notebook has been my constant companion and has gone everywhere with me the past year. When I thumb through it, I see all of the projects.. and well... my life... from 2012.

I found some old podcast notes...

My first draft of "Annie and the Swiss Cheese Scarf"...

And even a few stories from my daughter scattered throughout...

I have to tell you.. I will always treasure this messy notebook for the memories that it contains.

Every messy, paper-clipped scribbled page as well as my messy pile of swatches helped contribute toward something that I am truly proud of.

This pristine bag of finished knits.

More pictures and information about these designs coming soon!