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Saturday, June 18, 2011

The usual angst-ridden, final-project fueled, post

How many of these posts have I made you poor people read, already?!  Every 10 weeks there are more finals.  Every 10 weeks the sneak up on me and I find myself tired, stressed, and restless from sitting at the computer for hours and hours on end.  I want to go read a book.  I want to bake bread.  I want to knit something designed by someone else.  I want to find out what Cascade thinks of my latest proposal. 

Oh Cascade.  I've been knitting swatches for a week in hopes of being able to knit some small accessories for them, and I'm starting to second guess myself.  I mean, how can anyone still design anything new?!  Everything has been done before.  There's nothing new to do.  How many cables are there?  How many lace variations are there?  How many cute little triangle-half circle, garter-stitch, lace shawls are there?  I feel like anything I think of doing, it's already been done.  I've got designers block I guess.  And you know what?  I have a physical, pit-of-my-stomach, sinking feeling when I think about trying to design a sweater for someone who isn't me.  I want to do it.  I have about six sketches in my book right now.  I'm just flat out scared.  I don't know where to start.  I guess I really need to find the time to take a design class so I'll have some sort of direction, because I'm clearly not comfortable just winging it. 

I mean, I have an idea for a beautiful Aran sweater (two actually) but I just can't decide which cables to use, or where to put them, so that it won't look like a hundred other aran sweaters out there.  Would the fact that it's designed for tall women be enough to set it apart from the others?  Would it get lost in the shuffle?  And what about my colorwork hats and mittens?  Can I even break away from colorwork?  Am I capable of designing something with less than two different yarn colors?  Does it even matter if I can?  Will I be doing stranded socks, patterned tams, and mittens for the rest of my designing life?  Will I ever be able to design lace like I really want to?  Will I ever get a sweater off the ground? 

Maybe I just feel insecure right now because I'm literally in the middle of finals and its hot and I'm tired.  Maybe the life of a knitware designer is too unstable and its making me insecure.  Maybe I was drawn to this life because I'm already unstable.  Maybe I'll just design once in a while and put it out there on the chance that others might feel like knitting it too.  Maybe I'll just design for my own enjoyment and hope that I can make a few bucks on the side to help support my yarn habit.  Because sometimes I get really excited about a new design and I show that to someone (who's sold a few patterns to major companies and has pretty good pattern sales through the shop, so they know what they're talking about), and I don't care for the direction I get most of the time because it's about being more basic and bland and appealing to the general public (because that equals sales), but I like what I like and I don't want to design milquetoast, white-bread, plain-vanilla designs.  I just don't!  So, I struggle knowing that I won't get the sales I really want because my patterns won't appeal to the masses, but when I do basic basic designs I feel like I'm drowning.  Ah, there's the rub.

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