Wednesday, September 10, 2014

DESIGNING - Choosing Yarn (Part 1)

Now that it's been a little more than a year since I published my first "pay for" pattern I thought you may be interested in how I go about creating a knitting/crochet pattern. There are multiple steps and they may happen in a different order depending on whether I'm designing for a publisher/magazine or for myself, but all the steps must be incorporated into the final design.

Step 1: YARN

Choosing which yarn to use depends on a few factors. 

What season am I designing this pattern for? Spring/Summer garments tend to use finer yarns DK, Sport, Fingering, Lace and may have some cotton/linen content. Fall/Winter designs will use heavier weight yarns like Worsted/Aran and also can include DK and sport weight. Wool, alpaca, cashmere, angora, and mohair yarns can all be used in the winter. Sometimes the publisher/magazine has a specific yarn they need used. In this case there really is no decision to make.

Yarn choice can also depend on the cable/lace/texture pattern I plan to use on the garment. If I'm doing cables I want a smooth yarn which will show the cables nicely, probably wool or wool/blend. For lace, I like to use finer yarns and nothing too fuzzy.

What about colour? If I'm designing for a magazine/publisher, they often have "mood boards" with lots of things to show colours they would like to see. For instance, this picture below shows a mood board for Harrisville Designs. 

To me, this board says "cool", "wintery" colours. I would choose a cream/natural, grey, or maybe an ice-blue colour. Since this mood board is for a fall/winter garment I would use a wool DK/Worsted/Aran yarn.

With all these choices it can be hard to choose a yarn for a design.

Next week I will talk about stitch patterns ... sometimes I choose the stitch pattern first if I can't decide on a yarn.

Happy Knitting!

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