Sunday, December 7, 2014

Indie Gift-a-long 2014

The Indie Gift a Long is currently happening over on Ravelry

The Indie Design Gift-A-Long is a 2 month long KAL/CAL of holiday gifts made from patterns designed by a rather extensive list of independent designers which started on Nov 13 and finishes on Dec 31 2014 - so there is still time to sneak in a few christmas pressies.

I was fortunate enough to be able to interview Mary from

How long have you been designing? 
I’ve been working up my own designs for almost as many years as I’ve been knitting, but I only began publishing patterns in 2010.
Where do you get your inspiration from? 
I find inspiration in a variety of places: Sometimes in nature or a place, sometimes simply out of a desire to add a particular garment to my wardrobe. For years, I envied how knitters wore their beautiful lace shawls. I love knitting shawls but somehow find myself “shawl challenged”. When I try to wrap them over my shoulders, they just never sit quite right on me lol. So, I did a series of designs (Elphaba, Daydream Believer, Iolanthe, and Sleepy Jean) that incorporate various elements of shawl design…and I get to wear a shawl as part of a sweater.
Another set of designs (my Quabbin Series) was inspired by four central Massachusetts towns that were flooded back in the 1930s to make way for a reservoir that serves the Boston area. These designs were inspired by the sense of place and history of each of these former towns.
What do you do with your free time? 
What free time lol? “I don’t always put down my work, but when I do…” I can often be found singing, cooking (I’m a total foodie), and/or in my garden (I grow much of my own produce in the summertime…I even make huge batches of tomato sauce that I freeze to use throughout the year).
What book are you currently reading? 
The Principles of Knitting, by June Hemmons Hiatt. It’s a huge volume full of “physics of knitting” type of information. I love it!
What is your favourite music at the moment? 
That’s a tough choice! I love a variety of musical styles: Pop, rock, popular song (think: Ella Fitzgerald) and jazz, classical vocal music (I’m a classically trained soprano who performs locally). What I’m listening to right now is Audra MacDonald’s latest album, “Go Back Home.”
What are 3 of your best selling patterns? 
Elphaba and Simplicity have been two of my best sellers, but my recent release, Soubrette has been selling very well in just its first month and a half.
And anything else that you would like your audience to know :) 
I try to write patterns that are clear as possible. People shouldn’t have to spend their knitting time trying to decipher what I mean, so I do my best to provide a photo tutorial for an unusual construction, text boxes that clarifywhy I ask the knitter to do something in a certain way, etc…
I also strive to empower the knitter to modify a pattern to suit their own fit preferences. No two people are shaped alike, and even two people with the same bust size will have different fit needs. So, in most of my patterns, I include a “Thought About Fit” section that takes knitters through the process of choosing a size, and modifying to best suit them.