Monday, 12 September 2016

Sample Knitting

I have a bunch of design projects that  are in the planning stage.  I have the yarn and the pattern charted out and for three different projects I'm waiting for the swatches to dry so I can do math so I can write the pattern so I can start knitting. I like this stage but it can feel like knitting limbo where I can't start anything and don't want to start anything boring while I wait so I work on the blanket, which I like but after a while it gets a bit tedious.  Luckily for me a designer whose work I adore needed another sample knit and I'm going too be making her a hat.  A friend recently asked why I don't usually knit things for money and after explaining how long it takes to knit things and why it would be ridiculously expensive or result in me making about $2 an hour he got it.

Someone recently pointed out that sample knitting was illogical then, since it's still knitting for almost nothing an hour.  I've been thinking about that, because it is different but couldn't immediately put my finger on why, but I think I've figured it out.

1.  If I was knitting for a craft fair I'd be stuck doing a bunch of what sells, I'd find that boring, with sample knitting you generally knit one of something and move on.

2.  Usually I learn something while sample knitting, it's subtle, something like "oh, that's a smart way to divide the chart up" or "the way this section is formatted makes it a lot easier to read."  I find this sort of knitting in particular makes me a better designer.  (To be perfectly clear I'm not talking about copying anyone's design but seeing how someone else making it in the business runs their ship makes me run mine better.)

3.  I'd be knitting something anyways and this saves me the time of picking out a project, it also means I don't have to buy yarn for the project, it's basically free entertainment.

4.  I can knit a 20th hat without the guilt of not wanting to give it away while knowing that if anyone knew how many winter accessories I have they might consider an intervention.  I have to send the sample back, that's part of the deal.

The pattern's really pretty, I'm looking forward to it.

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