The start of the year is a time of grand beginnings and big energy for me. I set ambitious goals and cast on bold new projects!
Thus I have begun a new blanket design. While we generally don’t share our designs until they are off the drawing board and into the books, this time I wanted to make an exception and illustrate what my design process is like.
Last fall I launched my hand-dyed yarn line, Rainbow Heirloom. All the glorious rainbows I have been creating in the dye studio have definitely been impacting my design work. I am inspired to create them and they, in turn, inspire new designs!
Design Intent: a simple, satisfying, striped rainbow
So with this in mind I began to make swatches, just playing with different ways to stripe. I tried the classic chevron, simple crochet, and alternating colours in a simple lace pattern. The final swatch, a clear winner in my mind, creates a clear, bubbly and bouncy shape. The white main colour makes a nice crisp line between the coloured waves, and the form of the lace is unique, modern, and playful.
Another design question that had to be answered up-front for this blanket was the order in which to knit the stripes, and which colours to be included. Since I was working with my Rainbow Heirloom blanket kits in mind, I decided to use the ‘Sunshine and Storm’ rainbow, and work all 21 colours into the blanket. So I pulled out my mini-skeins, and began to play.
Having knit 1/3 of my blanket (6 colours… you can see the results!), I realized that the minor adjustments I had made to the pattern after knitting the swatch weren’t as brilliant as I had hoped. When designing I strive for perfection, because the hundreds of knitters who knit our designs deserve our best work.
So I’ve just now cast on again, with a small adjustment to the striping. But this is an addictive knit, every stripe is a new colour so you always want to knit just one more!
More about the knit design process
We have some other posts about the design process, and about other designers:
Are you ambitious at the start of the year?
We have laid down another big goal this year – #TCK12sweaters2015 – Alexa and I each plan to knit a total of 12 sweaters this year… and we’d love to have you join in! For more info check out this blog post (there’s prizes!) and tag your posts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Ravelry with #TCK12sweaters2015!
Other blanket knits from TCK: