Tuesday, March 02, 2010

I'm one of the 7,373 today.

I am, one of seven thousand three hundred and seventy three ravelers who have registered as Designers on Ravelry, 7,373! I should not be surprised that within the knit world there are so many with creative energy wishing to share their developments .. and now I'm one of them. Knitting is a slow craft, and it is a transparent craft in that a knitter can see the work grow and change and shape as they follow a pattern, it is inevitable that many(most?)knitters will progress from following instructions to making instructions. Today I can modestly announce my first design is up and available (free), and I reach the turning point on Skew II.


This is my design, a little baby bootie, named after Samuel Johnson's cat - Hodge. There is a quote that most of you will probably have come across by Samuel Johnson that goes like this Why, yes, Sir, but I have had cats whom I liked better than this,” and then as if perceiving Hodge to be out of countenance, adding, “but he is a very fine cat, a very fine cat indeed.” I think of this baby bootie as being like that cat, a very fine bootie. The design evolved, and in its first iteration was knit before Toby was born, some 11 years ago, and the first one was knit flat. The second one was knit in the round, and every time I knit it I changed a little something, as my knitting knowledge developed I pulled and tested different constructions, and techniques, ditching those that added nothing, refining and developing those that improved the bootie. There are three things that I really like about this bootie. First its plain, so it suits the dress code of a modern baby, and even more of a modern baby boy. Second, its easy to put on, no ties (I always worried I'd tie ties to tight and cut of all circulation to my babies teeny tiny feet), there are no fiddly buttons or bows (those little legs and feet kick and move like you would not believe when there is a bow to tie or a button to do up). Third, it fits snugly and stays on - as much as a knit bootie can, there is a three-fold trick to this stay on business, first there is a tightly knit 1x1 rib that fits the leg, then there is a firmly knitted fold down cuff that snaps over the rib and stops it stretching, lastly the sides of the foot are knit in a bouncy knit and purl welt design that stretchs out when a baby rubs those teeny tiny cute feet together and snaps back (in traditional bootie designs babies can often rub their booties off). Now I'm not silly, I can't promise this bootie will stay on all babies all the time, but for me it worked most of the time. I like to give two pairs of Hodge to new parents and I like to knit them in sock yarn(it is easy care). I knit one pair in the preemie- new born size, and one pair to grow into in the larger 3-6 month size, or I'll knit it on smaller needles and with finer yarn it if really is for a teeny preemie. I find parents remember this bootie and if they are knitters, they will ask for the pattern(that bit always flatters me). I'm happy to share - and if you care to try knitting a pair here is a link to the ravelry download (all fixed with download activated). Now it has been test knit by at least 3 knitters, and the lace version was contributed by Morag of Vintage Purls, so I hope it the pattern is complete with no errors ... but if you run into trouble, just let me know and I'll do my best.

So setting up as a designer, and sorting the pattern ready for upload .. well that seemed to take a bit longer than I thought, but its done now. My other progress this week so far has been to reach the heel on Skew II, so now the test, will my plan work. Will retaining the leg stitch count at 72 stitches solve the problem of the top of the leg and cuff being firmer than I want? I don't know but I'll keep you posted.

Na Stella

10 comments:

Jane said...

Congratulations! The booties are so sweet!

Aletha said...

Hmm, I cannot seem to find the download on the Ravelry page. It's probably a user error (me), but I would like to try this pattern! Looks wonderful!

Amy said...

Congratulations on your design work! I can see how you make the transition to instructions - something clicks and you know you can do it. These boots are lovely I will look out for them

JustApril said...

Very nice!

KathyR said...

Congratulations! They look really lovely - and I know the pattern works wonderfully too! ;)

Kate/Massachusetts said...

Stell, many congratulations on publishing your pattern!! It came out beautifully! I love the lace version, too!

Hilary said...

I can't wait to try these - congratulations, and thank you so much for sharing!

Hilary said...

p.s.
I just watched your video on Russian grafting -- that's fantastic! What else do you use it for?

Heather said...

Well done, I hope this means there will be more to come..great blog

SusieH said...

Booties are VERY cute! Just came across your blog while checking out various Skew socks on Revelry. I will be reading curiously to see how Skew II works out for you - good luck!!