I received a message from a knitter, Amy at Ravelry today. It is always a very nice gesture of knitters to write me to tell me how they like my works. Amy wrote me and wish that I could tell more about myself like how I become a designer and what inspires me in that.
Before I talk about my knitting design journey, I would like to tell you all a bit of my background.
I come from a small family. I have a younger brother and wonderful parents. Before married to the States, I was a retail pharmacist for few years in Malaysia. Knitting become a part of me since year 2001 when I decided to learn how to knit a sweater for my boyfriend (now husband). I continue to knit when I was in Scotland doing the final year of my MPharm course and I actually taught many course mates to knit scarf either for themselves or their boyfriends.
Life after coming to the States is very much different. I can’t practice my profession in this country because my degree is not recognized and accepted. I don’t want to go through the whole course again being far away from my hubby in another city. Therefore, I am a housewife since year 2007 after I come to this country.
Some times around February of 2007, ETSY was introduced to me by my sister in law. She suggested that I could sell some handknitted items there since that is a wonderful platform for handmade products. I thought why not? Since I spent most of my time knitting. I still remembered how excited I was when someone actually really purchased a knitted shrug that I made. I remembered I told myself proudly that: ” This is the first 24usd I made in this country!”.
I started to sell some scarves and receive custom order at ETSY. Sales was not too good but it kept me busy on and off. At the same time, I sharpened my knitting skill with helps from some useful forums, wonderful knitting magazines and knitting blogs. That was before I joined Ravelry. Lily is my knitting buddy that encourages me a lot in knitting designs. I still remembered how our friendship starts. It started with an email from me asking her what software she used to do her pattern. She was already selling some beautiful crochet patterns online at her blog that time.
I started to design knitted tops at the very beginning of my design journey. I sell patterns in my old blog and ETSY as well. That was a very fun and whole new exciting experience. I joined Raverly around August of 2007 and that is a wonderland for me to keep all my projects organized meanwhile having the chance to explore more about other knitters’ wonderful works. Ravelry is such an amazing place for an avid knitter like me and it definitely triggers my designing urge when Ravelry started to allow knitters to sell their patterns there.
With the great influences and inspirations by talented knitters like Ysolda, Cookie A and Jared Flood, I humbly decided to be more serious in designing. Shawl is the category that I wanted to try badly and finally I designed my first ever top down triangular shawl – Be.Leaf at July 2010. The designing process was fun and I really enjoy it! Very quickly I continue making patterns with a consistent pace since then.
Damask is the pattern that I designed to participate in the Malabrigo Sock contest. Luckily it won me a 3rd prize and it gained some attention at Ravelry and I believe that was how more knitters know about my patterns.
I collect many stitch dictionaries, from Japanese stitches to Estonian stitches. I personally love lace, cable and textural stitches very much. I love to design shawl because I collect a huge stash of fingering weight yarn. I believe there are many knitters are just like me, who love knitting shawls and also hoarding many fingering weight yarn. I always want to see different design elements in my patterns and I also try to add some new stitches here and there to challenge some knitters’ comfort zone.
Besides shawls, I definitely would like to designs some bigger projects in the future. I also wish to attend some fiber fairs or thrunk shows to meet some wonderful knitters. Knit Nation and Sock Summit is on my top to-attend list next year but sadly that there might be no Knit Nation next year due to the Olympic.
(Are you all bored with this post yet? It is almost done!) Designer has always been a big and fancy word to me. I never have imagined or foreseen myself becoming a designer to be honest. My passion for knitting has leaded me to this stage and I appreciate everyone who has encouraged me in many ways. I hope to see myself making more and more beautiful patterns down the roads. Of course, I would like to see you all along too~ 🙂 🙂 🙂