Rise Up Designer Three
Laura Patterson, I really love talking to other designers about their process, and we’ve talked before, but this is as we are finishing up a collaborative project.
Q1: Where do you usually start when creating a design?
I like to think that it’s the yarn that normally speaks to me first, but that’s not what actually happens. I get a feeling that the next thing up really needs to be a shawl, or a sweater, or whatever, and I start digging through stitch dictionaries, doing some swatching, and drawing up some stitch charts. Then I grab a yarn that I think will be lovely for the current project. If the yarn agrees, we’re good to go. The yarn doesn’t always agree, though. If that’s the case, sometimes the project is shelved until the “right” yarn presents itself. If I don’t listen to the yarn, the entire design doesn’t work. It’s horrible. In the end, it’s the yarn that has the final say, not the first one.
Q2: Do you have a preference of working with restrictions versus doing “whatever”?
Generally, I prefer doing my own thing, but every now and again it can actually be freeing to have certain restrictions.
Q3: How do you start a design? Yarn? Stitch Pattern? Shape? Concept?
See my answer to question 1.
Q4: How do you decide which ideas to pursue and which to let sit?
The decision is part my mood, whether the stitches cooperate, and in the end whether or not the yarn is compliant.
Q5: Do you do collections or concept development?
Not really. I’ve tried to, but apparently my brain doesn’t work that way very well.
Q6: What appeals to you about independent designing?
After a couple decades of working in a cube farm, I love not having to go into the office every day. I also really enjoy having so many different kinds of things to do every week, instead of the same exact thing every day. In my world, variety rules.
Q7: What role does color play in your work?
Color is everything.
Q8: What besides knitting and your family do you love?
I’m an avid reader, I love to garden, but seem to do it only seasonally, though my love of flowers is profound and year round, and I enjoy baking.
Q9: How do you remain creative?
You should have asked me this question a couple of years ago. Some family things knocked the creative right out of me in the summer of 2018, and just when I was starting to get it back Covid struck, and I’ve been down for the count, not even knitting most days, ever since.
Q10: What next—besides leaving the house!?
I’m a hugger. Not being able to hug all my friends has been tough! So that: I’m going to start hugging again, with abandon. I also want to get out of dodge, go somewhere, do something, that has nothing to do with running errands.
Bonus question: Can you tell us about the new design in Rise Up?
The new design is called Emergence. When we chose the stitches that we were all going to use as inspiration for our designs there were two colorwork stitches, and one cable stitch, and one texture stitch, but no lace! What’s a poor lace designer to do? Turn one of the colorwork designs into its lace equivalent, that’s what. So I did. Though it took a number of iterations before I got it right. Then, being me, I added one of my favorite floral insertions along one edge for a little bit more interest.
Get Connected: Laura Patterson and Fiber Dreams
Check out Laura’s previous designer profile on JillWolcottKnits.com here!
Leave a Reply