You’re probably getting sick of me talking your ears off about my San Agústin facecloth design, but for the sake of completeness I’m writing this post anyway. 😉 And for those of you who are new, or somehow missed all of this: I designed and listed my first ever authentic piece of knitwear, both in physical and pattern form! It’s a facecloth. And it’s named after my Canarian “roots” a.k.a. the first place I lived when I just moved here (not even a year ago). So this is all about firsts and I hope y’all like to read a bit more about my first design experience.
THE GREY (DUH) PATTERN SAMPLE OF THE SAN AGÚSTIN FACECLOTH
How to get inspired for a knitwear design? Oviously, this works differently for different designers, and it even works differently for me depending on what mood I am / situation I’m in / options I have. When I was playing around with the idea of designing a knitting pattern myself, I had just moved to Gran Canaria. It was warm, half of my yarn stash was still in The Netherlands, and I didn’t know where to get new yarn — if I had wanted to purchase even more, which I didn’t. So I had to rely on the yarn I had with me, and the outside temperatures made me want to work with cotton.
There was this one cotton yarn that had been in my stash for ages: a sweater quantity of Eco Barbante in Laurel green, and two skeins of the same yarn in Lotus white. As a silly amateur beginner knitter, I once purchased this large amount for a sweater design of my own. Like yeah, didn’t we all have these ambitious plans when we were young and innocent knitters? Of course I knitted it on a way too tight gauge and it turned out way too sturdy. This yarn is super sturdy anyway, which I love, but it has also made it (after the sweater fiasco) linger purposeless in my stash. So I decided it would be perfect for home stuff instead of clothing or accessories, and I also decided a smaller project would probably be a better idea to start with.
SWATCH OF ECO BARBANTE IN SEED STITCH
One of the advantages of cotton yarn is that it doesn’t felt, handles water very well, and is often machine washable. This is why dishcloths are a favorite project for many knitters to make in order to use up small quantities of cotton. I decided my Eco Barbante would make perfect, scrubby facecloths / bath mits, especially when knitted in seed stitch. I later discovered the wrong side of my Long Island sweater (which I actually made the right side because I loved it so much) had a very cool bobbly pattern, and I decided to use that for my facecloths. Also, I wanted a proper mitten, not just a cloth, which would set my design apart from many designs already available. And this was the result:
FIRST EVER SAN AGÚSTIN FACECLOTH WITH BOBBLY STITCH PATTERN IN ECO BARBANTE
Inexperienced as I was, I had not foreseen that this combination of super sturdy yarn and a bobbly stitch pattern would make for a waaay too scrubby facecloth. It would rather ruin your face than giving it a gentle cleanse, haha! I also wasn’t a fan of the way the top edge turned out (not really visible on the above picture, but it wasn’t the neatest). Plus, it didn’t wanna lay flay prettily. So I turned to a much softer cotton, my beloved Drops Paris, and regular stockinette stitch. Lucky me I had the yarn in white and black in my stash, so while redesigning the pattern, I also played around with pinstripes.
PINSTRIPED SAN AGÚSTIN FACECLOTHS
This Drops Paris version turned out way better and I decided to make eight examples of it, all with differently placed pinstripes, you can still check them out in the shop. I did switch back and forth between knitting them flat and in the round, in order to find out how to make them lie down flat. I made some final tweaks to the design before I started writing up the pattern and I made a few more facecloths for the shop. These tweaks are what makes these non-pinstriped facecloths I’ve got currently listed a little different. I think they turned out better, which is why they are slightly more expensive as well.
SET OF SAN AGÚSTIN FACECLOTHS IN GREY AND BLACK
And then it was time to write down the pattern, have it tested, process my testers’ comments, and list it for sale. Woah! That was way more time consuming and nerve wrecking than I ever thought it would be. I only just now realized how much love I had put into this design over the weeks and it’s difficult to not take criticism personally. Luckily, my testers were the loveliest people, and they came back to me with the most helpful advices, formulated in a constructive way. Here are some of their testing examples:
ELISABETH (@ELISABETH_ANNE_) DOING THE COLOR BLOCK THING ON HER FOURTH (!) FACECLOTH
MARS (@MARS.KNITS) DOING IT THE CHAIN TWENTY WAY IN WHITE
TOTAL FLATLAY GOALS OVER AT MARIA’S (@SHOWMEMARIA), WHO ALSO DID A STRIPEY DESIGN
I’ve included multiple links throughout this blogpost, but let’s do it again shall we? 😀 You can purchase ready-to-ship San Agústin facecloth sets on Etsy, and get the pattern both through Etsy and through Ravelry.
MY LOVELY, SUPPORTIVE FRIEND JESS (@KNITSPLEASEUK) TOTALLY MAKING THIS PATTERN HER OWN, CAN’T WAIT TO SEE THIS FINISHED!
Okay now I’m gonna sign off, happy knitting / designing if you are!