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Could you become a Crochet Designer?

Updated: Jan 24, 2023

Would you like to design crochet patterns even if you have never designed before?

What kind of crocheter are you? Do you fix errors in patterns without much thought? Swap out features such as sleeves or necklines to make projects your own?

I started out (like many designers) tweaking and adjusting other designers patterns. This was either to improve the fit or to change the sleeves or other elements. I can pretty much look at an item and be able to replicate it without the pattern... but thats how my mind works.

I began my writing my own creations when I had gaps in my (and my families wardrobe). For example, things like a super quick simple stitch beanie hat in dk that can be whipped up on a couple of hours as all of a sudden the temperature has dropped and the kids have lost all their hats.

So these wardrobe needs kick started my brain into finding a solution to the problem.

Other designs come from inspiration from yarn or stitch patterns l like. Sometimes a skein of yarn will be experimented with in a design and it just doesn't work. Never be afraid to pull out your work and start again. They are just crochet stitches, they are not sacred! Plus you have the joy of working them again in a way that suits the yarn you are using.

I follow a fairly process driven methology to get my ideas from my head onto paper and ready for tech editing and testing. Yes, I still get my own patterns tech edited as you 'can't see the wood for the trees' so to speak. After designs have been being swilling round my brain and then transcribing to paper via some yarn swatches it's easy for mistakes to creep in what your brain just doesn't see anymore. Your eyes read what they think is there, not what is actually written. A tech editor can see your design with a fresh pair of eyes highlight inconsistencies and errors to be fixed.

My basic design process typically follows this:

  1. Initial Idea

  2. Sketching

  3. Swatching

  4. Yarn choice considerations

  5. Pattern writing

  6. Make sample

  7. Grading (if required)

  8. Tech editing review

  9. Testing

  10. Finally hit Launch!!!

Phew there really is a lot that goes into designing something even as simple as a hat isn't there?

So even the free patterns you find online have likely gone through this process (although many are not tech edited as there is a cost to that service), and you realise that is an awful lot of work for a freebie. I know that there are issues in the fiber industry around the valuation of 'women's work' and free labour. I may pick this up at a future blog post as this is important.

If you are buzzing with ideas in your head, just start sketching, even if you think they are totally rubbish! Only you will see them, but get them down on paper, and keep getting them down onto paper. Over time you will start to formulate a plan and the designs will come together. Start small and work your way up to sweaters if thats your thing. Or stay with a single item and find your niche and style and design everything in shawls, or socks... or all the hats.

To be honest, I procrastinated far too long to release my first patterns as I didn't think they were good enough. Done is better than perfect so just get started. You can only improve once you start your journey. So go start your crochet designer journey... and enjoy your crochet along the way!


The information contained above is provided for information purposes only. The contents of this article are not intended to amount to advice and you should not rely on any of the contents of this article. Professional advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from taking any action as a result of the contents of this article. Lyndsey Allen disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on any of the contents of this article.

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