Where ideas come from

Posted 5th March 2011

It's something I'm often asked about when people look at my knitting patterns for the first time and isn't always that easy to explain.

Some of the works of which I'm most proud have come from what seemed like the worst ideas at the time, throwaway suggestions that have been immediately dismissed but retrieved, dusted down and lovingly pondered over at a later date. I'm sure I'm not alone in finding that inspiration is hardest to come by when it's needed the most if I try to sit down with a piece of paper whilst racking my brains, all I'm going to come away with is a page covered in doodles, signatures and possibly next week's shopping list.

Of course, inspiration isn't always that random, other patterns have come about from more obvious influences, such as my collection of Knitted Christmas Decorations, created around December 2007 I think you really do have to be approaching the big day itself to come up with a collection like that. The Knitted Piggy Bank was also the result of topical times, designed in the early days of the Credit Crunch when it just seemed like stylised piggy banks were absolutely everywhere in the media.

Knitted Lilies

The Knitted Flowers booklet was the result of trying to come up with a Mother's Day present for the mother who has pretty much everything she wants. That particular year, Mother's Day had been particularly sneaky in creeping up on me unawares until there were about three days left to go. Somehow in my panic, the idea of knitting a bunch of carnations seemed like a good idea, and when they were warmly received, the notion of making a whole batch of patterns covering other floral favourites seemed like a natural step.

It might appear that my most random collection is that of the Russian Style Stacking Dolls, but again, this was a logical by-product of one of my other interests foreign languages. (I have to state for the record that my abilities in this regard seldom go deeper than being able to introduce myself and ask for directions to the nearest railway station, but show me a discounted course in pretty much any language and I'll find it hard to resist.) In this case, a picture of a Matryoshka doll in a teach-yourself Russian book got me to thinking about whether the idea would translate into yarn, and the stately little ladies you see on the front cover of the pattern are the happy result.

At the time of writing this piece, I'd just completed applying the finishing touches to a Miniature Knitted Houseplant, another one of those ideas that just floated into my head a few weeks back and simply wouldn't move along until I'd given it a try. If you want to have a go at it, head on over to the Free Patterns section of this site, who knows, it might inspire you to create something of your own!

Clare


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