Tag Archives: knitting patterns

This is Community

Last week I received a message from Amanda at Fluff and Fuzz, you probably know her knitting patterns for toys, they are very cute and very popular, here’s one of them…

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Amanda told me (super politely) that she’d spotted some funny business over on MISI. Someone else was selling my knitting patterns, without my permission. This is called reselling and it’s stealing.

Reselling a knitting pattern without the permission of the pattern’s designer is illegal.

It’s illegal everywhere in the world.

It’s illegal even if you bought the pattern.

It’s also stupid, because knitting pattern designers have a world wide community and we look out for one another. Ravelry’s pattern database runs on this premise, there are designers who actually volunteer to ensure that newly posted patterns are not being resold. So, when I looked at the reseller’s “shop” I recognized other designers’ work and it was easy for me to tell them what was going on. I contacted three other designers in the end, two of them were toy designers.

There isn’t a handmade website in the world that will put up with reselling. I contacted MISI and within 24 hours the reseller was banned. The reseller did not have a chance to sell a single stolen pattern.

This is a thank you to Fluff and Fuzz and MISI for having such wonderful community spirit. It’s also a timely reminder to anyone considering reselling a knitting pattern. Don’t.

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Giving Away the Farm (kind of)

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Knit Today magazine in the UK is currently giving away 11 copies of the Natty Knits eBook Around the Barnyard. If you’re in the UK, you can enter their give away on the Knit Today website.

Inspired by this generosity and wanting to extend the giveaway to the whole world, I’ve decided to give away copies of Around the Barnyard to TWO winners of this blog give away.

Around the Barnyard is a 28 page PDF containing six toy farm animal knitting patterns for a Sheep, Pig, Duck, Cow, Mother Hen and Baby Chick. All the patterns use short row shaping, which is what makes these toys so round and so cuddly. The introduction has full instructions for making neat short rows as well as other hints and tips to help you knit up your farm friends. There are diagrams and full color photos throughout the eBook.

All you need to do to is pop over to the Natty Knits Etsy shop and take a look at the knitting patterns. Then come back to the blog and leave a comment on this blog entry to tell me which pattern you like best.

The give away ends at midnight PST on Sunday December 29th. Two winners will be picked using a random number generator and announced on Wednesday January 1st. You can enter from anywhere in the world, but only one entry per person. Please make sure that I can contact you in some way from your comment. The prize is the eBook Around the Barnyard in PDF format which will be emailed to the two winners.

Good Luck and Happy Holidays!

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Feedback

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I love to hear how knitters get on with my patterns. Of course it’s good to hear nice things, such as “I love your pattern & the helpful tips. I highly recommend this shop.”, but I also enjoy hearing from people who are struggling with a pattern, it’s really rewarding to help someone work it out.

Yesterday Etsy launched a new feedback system. It came as a bit of a surprise to me, as I’ve been off the knitting grid for a few weeks while I spent some time with my 6 year old son at the end of his Summer vacation. So on Tuesday morning, I finally sat down to send out customer feedback and discovered that it no longer exists! As an Etsy shop owner, this is a bit of a relief, one less bit of administration for me to fit in, plus rating customers is slightly weird, you don’t walk into a grocery store and receive a star rating on your shopping performance. At least, that never happens to me.

The other big change with Etsy feedback is that it’s now called Reviews and the “positive, neutral, negative” system has been replaced with stars. Natty Knits currently has 5 out of 5 stars and of course, I would like it to stay that way.

So next time you buy a pattern from the Etsy shop, please leave me some feedback, it will be great to hear from you.

And for all my Etsy customers who miss their feedback, thank you for buying from Natty Knits and happy knitting!

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Instant Downloads from Etsy

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New style listing, now with instant download

I am very pleased to be able to share the excellent news that Etsy now offers digital patterns as instant downloads. This is quite a revolutionary move, it means that when you buy a Natty Knits pattern you no longer need to wait for me to email it to you. It means that I won’t forget to add the download to the email (yes that has happened). It means that the email won’t get lost in cyberspace. It means I can leave the computer for longer than 12 hours!

Can you tell I’m excited?

I have now uploaded the PDFs for all my patterns and changed the titles and photos to reflect that these are instant downloads. The shop looks really good, you should take a look.

I tested out the download process over the weekend, just to make sure it works from a customer perspective. Here’s what I found…

Immediately after you’ve paid for a pattern, there’s a payment completed screen, which now also contains a large blue box with “Files Ready to Download” written on it. Obviously if you press that button, you can download the PDF. But don’t despair if you miss that prompt. 

You will also receive an email from Etsy which will have a big blue button in it saying “View your files on Etsy”, this will also take you to your downloads.

And finally, you can also access your digital patterns whenever you are logged in to Etsy. There is a blue link on the top right of the page that says “Your Account”. Click that and choose “Purchases” from the pull down menu. Then click the big blue button that says “Files Ready to Download”. You can then open and save the pattern.

Your digital downloads are always attached to your Etsy account so you can download them more than once.

If you’d like more information about digital downloads on Etsy, please refer to their help section.

And to celebrate I’ve added a new 3 pattern deal to the Natty Knits shop. The Robot, Snake and Shark patterns are all instantly available and at a discounted rate of $6 for 3 patterns.

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DIY Deadline Sale

The Natty Knits Etsy store is having a sale. Not because it’s Black Friday or Small Business Saturday or even Cyber Monday. But because of the DIY Deadline.

This weekend I’ve been making handmade holiday cards and the yarn for my knitted tree ornaments is waiting to be cast on later tonight, it’s a busy time of year. But we crafters need to be organised and ahead of the holiday game, we can’t start the week before Christmas, not unless we are speed knitters. So, everything in the Natty Knits Etsy store is now 10% off, just enter the coupon code DIYNK10 at the check out. And if you want an even bigger discount on the patterns, “like” Natty Knits on Facebook to see the special FB Fan coupon code.

Both the coupon codes are valid until Friday November 30 at noon Pacific Time. The discounts are only offered in the Etsy store, all the Natty Knits patterns on Ravelry and Knit Picks remain at their original prices.

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Jen and the Owl

My friend Jen started knitting earlier this year. She asked me a few questions about technique and shared some photos of her well knitted hats, but she kept saying she was just a beginner and a bit scared of knitting anything complicated. I suggested that we conduct a knitting experiment to see how she would handle one of my Natty Knits patterns. She eagerly agreed and I sent her the pattern for the Owl.

I chose the Owl because it isn’t the easiest pattern, nor is it the most difficult. The pattern uses the techniques of short-row shaping, knitting in the round, some K2tog decreases and a bit of sewing.

Jen said she had a day off and was planning to spend the day knitting and watching the Olympic cycling on the TV. Later that same day, she had finished her owl. She called him Wiggo after the British Gold Medal winning Bradley Wiggins. She sent me some notes about how she got on.

The first thing she said was that she didn’t have the right tools or materials, but had still found something that worked:

“I used Aran yarn. I had some left over. I used dk for the beak. I couldn’t find 3.5mm needles. So I used 3.75mm. I think the moral of this is that your potential customers need not be put off by not having the exact tools! I got on fine!”

There are plenty of knitters who would find this comment scandalous. But she’s absolutely right. That kind of substitution wouldn’t work if you were knitting clothing, then gauge and yarn choice are very important. If you’re knitting a toy it just needs to be knitted in a tight gauge.

It’s interesting to me that Jen doesn’t even mention the short row tutorial that’s in every one of my patterns. I always think that picking up the loop under the stitch is the hardest thing about short rows, but Jen seems to have picked it up with ease. Instead she showed me the notes she’d made to help her understand where she was in the short row. I have never thought of writing it this way:

This is my pattern written as a chart. When I knit from another designer’s pattern, I am always looking for clues to repeating patterns, that’s why I find complicated socks so interesting. Sometimes, I write myself a little chart like this to get the overview straight in my head before I start. I suppose this is the difference between following a pattern line for line and understanding how the pattern works. This may also mean that Jen is a designer in the making!

And speaking of being a designer, Jen then made an accidental modification to the pattern.

“I knitted the beak on straight needles. I don’t have round ones yet. It worked! Somehow. I just knitted a row when it said to knit round.”

The beak is supposed to be in stockinette stitch in the round. It’s supposed to have a smooth finish. If I was going to knit the beak flat I would work every other row in purl, which is not what Jen did. Having said that, she did find a way to modify the pattern that worked for her and Wiggo still looks cute with a bumpy beak. I always love it when knitters modify my patterns, even if it’s accidental.

So what did Jen think of the experience of knitting a Natty Knits pattern?

“I found it really enjoyable to knit something so small and cute. It made fear of error lessen.”

A big thank you to Jen for agreeing to help me with my experiment and for letting me write about her. Jen will be tackling the Natty Knits Pig pattern in the New Year. For now, she’s working on her Christmas knitting. 

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I Heart Halloween

My son has his first day of Kindergarten today. It’s a big deal for him and probably an even bigger deal for me. It also marks the cultural beginning of Autumn, so I am distracting myself by thinking about Halloween.

I love American Halloween. I love the dressing up, I love how childish it is, I love how it brings communities together and I love chocolate. So it’s no surprise that I’m happily re-knitting my Halloween patterns and filling the Natty Knits Etsy shop with spooky woolly things. There are new Pumpkin Heads, Ghosts, Monsters, Mice, Owls and Spiders and there will be more spiders over the next few weeks, as they are always very popular.

If you want to knit your own Halloween decorations there’s a new 3 Pattern Deal featuring the knitting patterns for the Pumpkin Head, Ghost and Spider. These are all easy patterns, mostly knitted flat on straight needles with small amounts of knitting in the round for the spider legs and pumpkin stalk. As always there are no wires or inserts in any of the patterns. It’s all done with the power of yarn. The spooky power of yarn…

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