The Joy of Doing What You Love

“JUST DO IT” – Doing What You Love

Fireplace work space

Winter Office

It’s been quite a year. Yep, believe it or not, I began this incredible journey of being a full time knitwear designer and teacher a little over a year ago. I’d been working in the industry for seven years, but always for other people (yarn shop, yarn company), but now I’ve spent the most amazing year doing ONLY what I love full time, and working for just one crazy boss . . . me.

It’s been quite a roller coaster and there have been a few uh oh moments along the way (if you submit to six different magazines who all have the same deadline and all designs get approved . . . better hire some sample knitters!).  There have been some 12 hr knitting days when deadlines were tight, and I’ve learned that as much as I love to knit, I have to let projects go to other knitters, so I can move on to the next one. That’s been hard. To see some of the designs I did this year, that are already published (can’t show you the other 14 that haven’t come out yet), you can click here.

There have been too many great things about this year to name, but I think one of my favorite things about the designer part of my job is that my grandmother’s rocking chair in front of my fireplace has been my workspace in the winter, and my (now destroyed, but that’s a story for another day) roof deck was my workspace in the spring / summer

Deck work space

Summer Work Space

As a teacher, I’ve been lucky enough to travel all over the country this year, teaching at shows, guilds and shops.  I’ve loved working with all the students and have been really excited to see the same students from last year coming back. It’s really fun to get to know students (and Sandi always brings me a little gift – pretty awesome). I also had two video classes and two webinar classes launch this year, and I just got done filming another one. Doing on camera work is a whole other ball game, but I love it.  Stay tuned for more info about some new classes I’ll be filming this winter.

But the most important, wonderful, shocking, amazing, awe inspiring thing I found out this year, was how generous and amazing people in this industry can be. It’s no exaggeration to say there were many things I knew NOTHING about. I was lucky enough to have brilliant friends to bother all year long with “what do you do when . . .”, “how do I . . .” , “what happens if . . .” questions. I also was lucky enough to have a bunch of brilliant and well respected folks believe in me enough to say, yeah, let’s work with her. I’ve had a year of feeling humbled, stupid, smart, ashamed and proud (remember roller coaster).

I wanted to name all the people who have helped me so much this year (and in past years), but I was afraid of two things:

1) It would sound like an Oscar speech and I hadn’t won anything

2) They would be “outed” for how wonderful they are and have their doors pounded down with people asking for help.

I hope you all know who you are, but just in case, I’m going to send you an e-mail saying “hey, I was talking about you”

On second thought, maybe I did win something . . . the job I’ve always wanted. I wish the same for all of you.


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  • Bev September 4, 2014   Reply →

    Patty, I am so thankful that you’ve been able to make this big step! I am a brand new knitter and you have inspired me through your teaching already (on Craftsy). I am learning so much and can’t wait to continue improving my skills. You are an inspiration to many, many knitters–both novice and highly experienced. Your teaching style is so upbeat and your delivery exceptional–I love your sense of humor! Your designs are amazing and I hope to be able to tackle some of them…eventually. Thank you for blessing so many with your talent and enthusiasm!

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