My current work in progress:

Seaforth designed by Alice Starmore, knit in British Breeds 5-ply Guernsey Wool on US 3 needles.




Every now and again the light bulb goes on, and I have a moment of clarity.

Lately I’m feeling a subtle shift in my knitting focus. I’m finding myself more interested in creating new designs, rather than knitting other people’s designs. I’ve always enjoyed designing and have done it fairly successfully on and off over the years, but I think now is the time to start thinking about doing it seriously.

What’s held me back in the past is my desire to concentrate on finishing things quickly. Designing is a slow process and I’ve always been an impatient soul. An immediate gratification kinda gal. But I think I’ve finally matured to the point that I realize that I need more of a creative outlet than knitting other people’s designs exclusively affords me. And I don’t need to be so result-driven.

Don’t get me wrong — I’ll never abandon Alice Starmore! I still have a few of her designs I want to knit, and yarn for a couple of them stashed away. And there are a few other things I want to knit, too that I’ve got lined up. I’ll always want to knit some others’ design, I just want to focus more on creating my own.

I really really really want to design a “killer” fair isle. And I have the embryo of fair isle swimming around in my head. Dunno if it’s killer, but it’s nice. Sometimes I dream about it, which should give you a clue about how exciting my “real” life is.

I also have not given up my idea of designing a Nordic-inspired two-color sweater. Got that one jumping around in my head, too. It’s getting crowded in there, because there’s also a lace sweater elbowing for room.

Clearly, I don’t have time for my full-time job.

So that’s my Friday Epiphany.

Speaking of WendyKnits! Designs

I did finish my Lucy sleeve and here it is, nicely folded in half:


I cast on for and started the front of Lucy, too.

Did not a smidgen of work on Ingeborg, so my reward will be extra knitting time on her this weekend.

Fun Little Projects

And even with all this high-falutin’ design talk, I’m not averse to fun little projects!

Those of you who subscribe to the Berroco newsletter have seen this pattern for a cute l’il cellphone bag, knitted in Berroco Suede. I think it’s danged cute! I’d probably make it without the fringe, though.

Did you see there where I said “I’d probably make it”? Actually, I’ve ordered some Berroco Suede in a couple of different colors for the express purpose of making these.

Which reminds me . . . where the heck is my Berroco Suede?

It started me thinking about other yarns to use to make fun little bags. I think some of my Colinette leftovers would work great.

Speaking of Colinette, I got three skeins of Colinette Cotton DK in the mail yesterday.


Ooh! Time to design a cute little tank!

Have a good weekend! All you in the NYC area, don’t forget the Critter Knitters Knitout on Sunday afternoon!

And do check out the blankets received page. As of May 19, 301 blankets received. You guys rock. Totally.


Lucy wants you to know that even supermodels eat sometimes.


  1. How exciting to hear that you are getting more interested in designing. You are so on the the mark with your “killer” fair isle comment. I bet is way more than just nice. Your talent can only yeild fabulous patterns and I can’t wait to see it all come to fruition. Yea!!

    Your Lucy sleeve is coming along nicely. I really like the color! And what a great cell phone bag. I’d probably leave off the fringe, too.

  2. Mary Pat says:

    LOVE LUCY – the pattern and the cat! Look forward to having you making the pattern available to us. I think you have a great future
    designing. Wonder how long you need to keep your day job?

    What I like best about Lucy is that the lace is where your undergarments – AREN’T. Contary to some other recent designs.

    Thank you for a great BLOG. The best way to start a day.

  3. Hi Wendy,

    Welcome to the club. I have your moment of epiphany every week! Unfortunately, I am a rubbish designer, and need the day job to keep me in wool.

    Just in the process of designing a fair-isle myself, but believe me, it’s not a killer. More of a crucifier, if you get me meaning. Can’t wait to see the patterns from the Wendyknits design studio…..

  4. I got nice little tingles when I read your epiphany. I’m so with you–want to branch out into design land but am far too impatient for the math and the experimenting and all that. But it is *very* exciting to read about what you’ve got planned for yourself. And for us! (that’s the general “us,” not the “us” that thinks you owe it to “us.” Oy. I’ll stop now.)

  5. I know you can do it! The more fair isle and nordic patterns, the better. I’ll get into the queue when it comes to buying your patterns.

  6. Dear Wendy, your constant exploration of color use, fiber, and texture is what helps makes your blog so endlessly readible. I bet if you looked back over your blog from a little before you knocked Flora out through now, you would see how the current movement toward following your own muse was perking along, quietly, in the backround. One of the first overt tips was changing your picture to the current more contemplative [almost pensive!] shot. Then more hints appeared – especially the advent of your frequent visits to Knit Happens! There is nothing like actually going into a great brick and mortar store that can get the creative muse going.

    Are you using anything to ease the design process? I am the world’s laziest design dabbler. I do use existing body “shapes” from existing patterns, but also use Sweater Wizard and Math Wizard all the time. I use the programs as jumping off points b/c I’m usually pooped when I get home from work. At that point I just want to get away from the mathematics of it and on to the other things I think are more fun. If you’ve never tried them, there are demos to download.

    Although I constantly have traditional stuff on various sets of needles [too many projects, too little time], you have helped me think about what inspires me when I depart into design/dabbling. Currently it is Adrienne Vittadini’s various pattern books. I’ve got them all and they are challenging and shapely. Wonderful inspirational stuff, plus when I get truly lazy, I can just cast on for her stuff and get right to the clicking.

    Thanks again for an ever engaging read.

  7. You go, girl! Remember, creating something that’s totally your own takes time, so don’t worry about those little seeds of ideas taking so long to germinate. That’s how it goes sometimes, fits and starts.

    Lucy (the sweater) is looking awesome! (Lucy the cat is looking awesome, as always!)

    Have a great weekend!

  8. I am so excited that you are thinking about designing. I think we all have a few designs running around in our heads, but mine are pretty traditional and (probably) boring. But looking at my Barbara Walker books really gets me in the creative mood.

    And the other neat thing about this is… had bunches of people offering to sample knit your latest design, so you have a built-in cadre of test knitters!!! Please put me on that list.

    Have a great weekend.

  9. It’s so rewarding to design your own projects. Have only finished two fo my own Fair Isle but loved the process. You have more experience than I and it will be wonderful to see your creations.
    Suede is wonderful to work with if you hands are in good shape (reason for a manicure!). The shawl I’m making really looks like real suede! Thanks for the link for the cell phone case. That is a must out of my leftovers.
    Good luck with designing and we’ll be watching to see what you create!

  10. Thank goodness you are going to design your own sweaters! Your talent is so remarkable. Move over Alice Starmore. Wendy’s a-comin’ on stronger.

    Happy weekend to you and your beautiful Lucy’s.

  11. You go girl! There are a number of ways to think about designing that mitigate the rush to completion roadblock – think baby/kid’s sizes as practice pieces. Even doll sizes, silly as it sounds, can be a way to release ideas without having to slog through a whole adult sweater.

    Test knitters – design software like Garment Designer or DAK – even the dreaded knitting machine can be useful in the design phase.

    Perhaps a Killer Fair-Isle Design Challenge?

  12. jocelyn says:

    Are ya gonna make the killer fair isle open to us too? I really think its neat that you want to design and the fact that you dream about it,well once ya feel ya can get goin! but i really do love your desings your fearless fair isle i have but it is currently stalled and i have wanted to ry your sock pattern evnyualy

  13. I’m thrilled for you (and us) that you are deciding to further your creativity with design. I think it is probably a natural evolution for you as a “master” knitter.
    I am also eagerly awaiting the Lucy design. I am knitting a sweater with Classic Elite Premiere that would probably work really well with that design.

  14. Bravo on your decision to design! And three cheers! May I suggest a book about knitting that includes your designs? Your blog definitely contains the knitting content…. I’m going on record as the first to order it – an autographed copy, please.

    The woman who blogged about cooking all of Julia Childs’ French recipes has a book contract. So, blogging is the path.

    I and so many other look forward to starting our day reading your writings. And, I’ve learned so much about knitting from you. Please consider.

    My love to Lucy – she definitely beats the other supermodels. Have a great weekend.

  15. Juliette says:

    Wendy – If your designs appear in your dreams — then it is only a matter of time before they travel down your arm. You are my new Action Hero!

  16. Wendy,

    If you made your designs available on your site for a few dollars and a SASE, you can bet that a lot of us would be happy to buy them. If you went as far as AS or Hanne Falkenberg and kitted the yarn, I’m sure you would make enough to quit the day job after a few iterations. Of course, you could augment that by appearances at knitting engagements (come to Boston!), etc., and after the first 8-10 designs, it’s a real book, and you’re there.

  17. Chandra says:

    Hey Wendy,
    I just got my official “WendyKnits! Minion” shirt in the mail, so I’m all ready to be looking for WendyKnits! designs at my LYS. I can’t wait to see what you come up with!

    PS: My 3-y-o dd LOVES to see the pictures of Lucy every day, so thanks for the “excessive cat sentimentality” that has turned your blog into something she and I can enjoy together. Have a great weekend.

  18. Wendy, I and some friends at work read your blog every day, and feel that your work is very professional. We’ve often wondered why you haven’t designed more, and now I’m thrilled to hear that your doing it!! You know you have a lot of supporters, and if you begin selling patterns you’re sure to be a success! WTG, girl.

  19. Wendy, follow the muse! You have so much good will and encouragement here. We’re all behind you and eagerly await the patterns becoming available. I’ll be among the first to send my dollars in if you make it a commercial endeavor or support you by knitting and blogging about your designs to spread the word.

    Your expertise and excellent tutorials made cutting my first steek last night a totally painless and anxiety free experience. Thank you so much!!!!

  20. I am looking forward to being able to knit ‘Lucy’, and it looks like it might provide me an excuse to buy some cotton cashmere…

  21. Can’t you just see us? A legion of knitters, running around wearing WendyKnits designs. *I* can certainly see it…. Bring it on!

  22. The Lucy sleeve looks very intriguing! I’ll be looking forward to reading about the pattern when it’s all done.

    I know what you mean about designing being slow — but it’s worth it! (I think — I’m halfway through knitting the second prototype of a sweater that I plan to submit to an online knitting magazine.)

    Follow your muse, Wendy! Lots can happen on weekends and lunch breaks…

  23. Dannette says:

    I’m a visitor to your site from a friend’s link, but I have to ask from an entirely non-knitting standpoint–is your kitty a Ragdoll??

  24. LOL. I’m sure that your “real” life is far more exciting than mine…remember I live in a somewhat backward country. 😉
    “LUCY” sleeve looks exquisite, really pretty.
    Who has time for thier fully time job?