Blog, Daily Life, Designing, Knitting, Philosophy

Failure

I think there’s a bit of a misconception about pattern design. Many people seem to believe that designers hit a home run with their designs every time. The math always works, the items always fit, etc.

Now,

Check these bad boys out.

Know what they all have in common?

Some of them are pretty decent sized and complex..

But none of them will ever be published.

That’s because pattern concepts don’t always come out right the first time, or the second, or the twelfth.

Now, it could easily be very upsetting to me that I’ve spent so much time working on concepts that will never see the light of day, but I don’t see it that way.

The purple gloves? They were a concept my husband wanted me to work on. I couldn’t communicate the techniques well enough, so the test failed.

The green sweater? I can’t get the dang sleeves right.

The orange shawl? Well, that motif is clearly not proportional!

But what that does mean is that I’ve now got the opportunity to learn from my mistakes. I no longer design patterns because someone else thinks it would be a good idea, I no longer try to make a crocheted acrylic sweater with a massive stitch gauge for my first garment design, and I don’t try to make people purl twisted stitches on the wrong side of a shawl!

So what does a designer do when pattern writing goes wrong?

I cast on a shawl shape that sounds like fun with a yarn I normally wouldn’t use and start knitting.

When something easy works out, it gives me the courage to try again with other designs. So, for now, I’ll just be hanging out with my Therapy Shawl.

Happy knitting, all!

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