Saturday, July 21, 2007

On Design

Just when I think I'll never publish anything again, opportunity knocks!

It goes this way: the call goes out for new designs, sometimes with criteria sometimes not. There is a deadline and a date given when you should hear back one way or the other.

Furious activity follows, swatching madly, sketching, calculations are made, until a nice little "submissions packet" is assembled. I like to have 3 designs for each query. For each of these designs, I include a swatch, a sketch, schematics and a "look book". I always spend too long daydreaming and end up with a wild time-crunch.

Then nothing. Time passes, life gets nutty, the 'hear by' date comes and goes, leaving me feeling a little blue. Life goes along, new jobs, holidays, it gets where I can't even really remember what I submitted, and wham! 2 designs accepted! Yippee Skippy! and maybe the 3rd...later.

That's where I am now. Only the designs almost always have to be re-designed with whatever yarn the higher powers decide on. Often very nice yarn with a completely different color palette and a different weight....So, the photo above is my approach to deciding the new color scheme. I hunker down with my inspiration; favorite books, old and new magazines, fabric swatches and the new yarn card. I pull off strands and lay them next to one another, first one group, then another. When I get a couple of groups that I like, I carry them around with me. Today they came out to brunch, in different light they look different. I hone it down to a final group with a couple of spare options. Now I'll request the selected colors and pray they have not been discontinued. When the new yarn arrives, round 2 begins, swatching for size, finding out how the new yarn behaves and seeing how the colors actually react with each other in real life!

7 comments:

Megan said...

Fantastic! Can't wait to see in due course what it is you have been working on - love the design process pic.

Anina said...

What fun! Good luck with sorting it all out.

magnusmog said...

What a great idea - take the yarn colours to lunch to see how they get on :)

Gina said...

Ooooh! I really like these little "behind-the-scenes" peeks at design and the process. Thanks.

Mary Jane said...

Thanks you guys! It really is fun. A puzzle.And the colors really do enjoy time out together. they mingle in little groups and decide for themselves where they'd like to end up. It's Princess, a yummy yarn too, mostly merino with a little cashmere and angora thrown in.

Petula Darling said...

It's cool to see the design process. I can't wait to see the new patterns.

jungle dream pagoda said...

Fascinating!!! I always love hearing the inside scoop from the artists! ...and YAY you!!!!