Welcome to Episode 5 of my mini audio podcast. This week I chat about:
- what I'm up to that's not knitting or crochet
- what I'm knitting
- what I'm crocheting, and
- what I've created
- Plus I've shared some tips along the way, including advice on your designs and your intellectual property.
I've been a busy bee as usual and have had the pleasure of working on an amazing book by Lydia Tresselt, also known as "Lalylala". Lydia's first book is super cute and follows the life cycle of Bugs, Beetles and Butterflies. Lydia has a huge following, and creates the most adorable amigurumi, and I guarantee that you're in for a treat with her delightful new book that will be published later this year. Lydia's blog is here: Lalylala
image copyright Lydia Tresselt
What I'm Knitting:
I joined a yarn club in January, run by the very talented Petra at "Made byBlack Elephant". I really love her work and its been a real treat to receive the yarn in the post each month, together with the cute little extras that she sends. I'm determined to use up the yarn and not just add it to my stash so I've used the first skein to knit up a sample for a new design. I love how the bright pink and electric blue jump out every now and again from the black base. This colourway is called "Wasting Light" and is 100% superwash 4ply merino; 10% cashmere and 10% nylon. It's beautifully soft to work with and I can definitely recommend it.
I've also been knitting with Erika Knight Gossypium Cotton, which is a complete dream to work with, plus it's sustainable too. I love how Erika can trace every step of production, from the fields it's grown in, through to the eco-friendly mill that it's spun and dyed in. The colours are gorgeous, as are all of Erika's yarn ranges. I've even used the cotton for fairisle and it works a treat. Lots of new ideas leapt into my head whilst I was working with this amazing yarn, so look out Gossypium Cotton, here I come!!!
What I'm Crocheting:
Mainly, I've been crocheting shawls, as I have 2 new designs to work up. These are my own designs and so it's been a little time consuming getting them right. My first sample used a variegated hand-dyed yarn from Sylvan Tiger yarns, and I love how it has crocheted up - it reminds me of confetti. The design is the perfect shape, but I misjudged the rows of "V" stitch, so it needs tweaking a little. But my mum-in-law really loved this shawl so I gifted it to her for Mother's Day, rather than ripping it out and starting again. I've switched to a semi-sold shade for the sample, so that the "V" stitches really stand out.
I'm also crocheting some baby items with Erika's Gossypium Cotton, which have all turned out rather cute. Tweed stitch is one of my favourite crochet stitches, especially in 3 different colours.
What I've created:
Here's a sneaky peak of my finished shawl (yet to be named). I loved the tassles and first time that I've ever made a tassel. I love them almost as much as a pom-pom.
I made a cute little hippo toy for a raffle prize, and also some crocheted flowers for a guest blog post over at Laughing Hens, which is an online yarn shop (UK based). I used Erika Knight's British Blue yarn, which comes in the cutest 25g balls. One flower used about 12g, so one ball would make 2 flowers. My guest blog post talks about the importance of passing skills from generation to generation. You can read my blog post here .
My Top Tip:
If you are a designer and you are asked to sign a contract for work carried out, make sure that you understand the terms of the contract that you are signing. For example, there is likely to be a clause that states that there is a period of exclusivity for the company - this means that for a fixed period of time you are agreeing to them using the pattern as they wish - either in other magazines, bookazines, or on the internet (e.g. as a free download). Make sure that you are happy with this clause and if anything isn't clear enough then don't be afraid to ask for clarification. Also, if there is something that you're not happy with, then speak to someone about it and ask for it to be changed so that you feel happy with what you're agreeing to. If they won't change it perhaps think twice about signing the contact. But I wouldn't recommend signing away the full rights to your designs, because this means that they are no longer your property and you will never be able to publish them again as your own - in effect you're giving away your design for the initial fee agreed, and then allowing the company to do whatever they wish with your designs, including selling them as individual downloads. They will therefore continue to make money out of your work for ever and a day, having only paid you for an initial one-off fee.
Obviously you can make whatever decisions you please, all I'm recommending is that you fully understand what it is that you're signing.
I hope you have a great week, and look forward to another chat soon. Thanks for reading - if you would like to join me on social media, I'm @the_woolnest on Instagram; @thewoolnest on twitter and @thewoolnest on facebook. It would be great to see what you're all up to.
Don't forget to tag me and use the hashtags #makeandbehappy and #knitcrochetcreate - I'll share my favourites.