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 Where do you get your inspiration?
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Chatty Knitter

United Kingdom
273 Posts

Posted - 08/22/2006 :  3:53:55 PM  Show Profile  Visit Wonk's Homepage Send Wonk a Private Message
I haven't really designed anything yet (well, I guess I have, but I've only knit an ugly prototype) and I was wondering where you designers got your inspiration? From art, from other designers, from commercial clothing?

I find some intricate commercial sweaters a huge source of inspiration. has a huge selection of beautiful sweaters, especially in the sale section right now. Unfortunately, it would probably be cheaper to just buy them than try to emulate them.

Still, this sweater is something I want to make, despite the cost, just because its design is really interesting:

Um, I'm wandering off-topic, but again, what inspires you?


Permanent Resident

3073 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2006 :  07:52:22 AM  Show Profile  Visit Boogie's Homepage Send Boogie a Private Message
Sometimes I see a yarn and I get an idea of what I want to knit it into.
Sometimes I see someone on the street and the way their jacket blows in the wind, makes me think of a lace pattern that I need to make into a sweater.
Sometimes I'm gardening and there is a flower or leaf that makes me think of a cable or lace.
Sometimes I'm taking a shower and thinking about knitting. I need hurry up so I can get out and sketch an idea.
Yeah, I have a giant book with a ton of sketches. Now if I can get to swatching for them....

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Tangled Jane
Seriously Hooked

750 Posts

Posted - 08/25/2006 :  3:11:20 PM  Show Profile  Visit Tangled Jane's Homepage Send Tangled Jane a Private Message
Nature inspires me first. Just wandering through my garden will give me fiber inspirations -- the colors! the textures! After that, travel, either virtually or for real. Most recently, a trip to Italy has inspired a whole Knitaly! collection of designs. Like Boogie, I sketch constantly and plot, plan, devise and scheme. Jane
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Chatty Knitter

220 Posts

Posted - 09/10/2006 :  05:06:40 AM  Show Profile Send nanetteb a Private Message
I always have more inspiration and ideas than time. I just wish I had the time to follow through on all my wacky ideas.

Years ago I was taking a walk in the desert and it was just starting to snow and the colors were just amazing. I came home and grabbed yarn in the various colors I remembered and knit a pair of socks. I keep a journal with all sorts of ideas and photos and an inspiration photo file on the computer. Once I was watching tv and Tara Lipinski (former Olympic ice skater) was on with one of her coaches. He was wearing the most amazing stranded Norwegian sweater I've ever seen so I grabbed my journal and quickly wrote all the details down before the segment ended.

I have a huge list of exercises to inspire and teach me about knitting. I'll take a photo of something and try to duplicate the colors in knitting. Or I'll actually duplicate a commercial knitted item. I knit two pairs of multi-color stranded socks from looking at photos in an Eddie Bauer catalog. I enjoy stuff like that to understand how other people combine colors. Some day I'd like to do an "ugly" exercise - I will purposely try to pick the ugliest colors ever to go together in a knitting project.

I'm currently knitting some socks from Priscilla Gibson-Robert's book, Ethnic Socks and Stockings. This has inspired me to plan a trip to a nearby textile exhibit. I think at the museum I'll buy a book or some postcards and try to use the colors from an item from the museum.

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Permanent Resident

6604 Posts

Posted - 09/10/2006 :  05:14:07 AM  Show Profile  Visit Atavistic's Homepage Send Atavistic a Private Message
Lately my photos from Korea and Thailand. Lotus blossoms, palaces, temples, colors that look awful and fantastic together at the same time, Hangul, demons...

Amanda Takes Off... and
Amanda Knits

Only you can decide how tongue in cheek I am.
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Seriously Hooked

913 Posts

Posted - 09/10/2006 :  7:02:11 PM  Show Profile Send Gelliott a Private Message
For some reason, the color of water has always inspired me (and this from someone with a real phobia of deep water!)

When I use a blue or green yarn I am usually thinking about Crater Lake, Lake Geneva, the SF bay on a misty day, or a stagnant, buzzing pond in the woods,... Often, when I am on vacation, I come home determined to knit a sweater in the color of the lake/river/ocean I saw.

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Honorary Angel

5539 Posts

Posted - 09/10/2006 :  9:40:45 PM  Show Profile Send azknitter a Private Message
I surf the net for specific sites of Indian Saris, Japanese Kimono, vintage clothing, handwoven garments, handmade jewelery, designer and boutique clothing, stores in places like Santa Fe, NM or San Francisco, CA....I check out posters for their color schemes, paintings, embroideries and tapestries....architecture, botanical watercolors, middle eastern art, Asian and African art, Native American rugs and jewelery.

The list is endless....and you can find most of it on the computer screen right in front of you.

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