My Knitting Journey – Why I Started Designing. Part One

If you have read my previous blog about how I learnt to knit you will know that my Nana taught me when I was around the age of 8.  But she only taught me the basics and how to follow a pattern.  I don’t have any recall of her adapting patterns or designing her own.  Now I would like to share with you the story behind Emma Sadler Designs.

How did I make the leap?

My husband would say necessity is the mother of invention.  And when it comes to my knitting designs this phrase couldn’t be more true!  But it took me many years to come around to the idea of designing my own knitting patterns.  Or indeed even that I had the ability.  For years knitting wasn’t even something that I thought about!

Aran Jumper

Between being taught to knit and leaving home I know I knitted, but I don’t really remember what.  I do have a vivid memory of making a blue jumper for my sister’s first baby.  And I do know that I knitted a little when I first moved out.

I moved in with my now husband at the age of 18.  For a while I was unable to find a job so I was at home a lot on my own during the day.  Its a very long time ago now, and more than a little hazy, but I do know I knitted during those early days.  I knitted a jumper.

It was the most gorgeous cream aran jumper.  I can still see the complicated cables on the body.  And the blackberry stitch on the arms.  It must have taken me hours to make that jumper.  And it fitted me beautifully.  But there was one hitch.  Phil didn’t know I knitted!

Secret Knitter!

Now, I am not sure exactly why but I kept my knitting a secret at this time.  I was 18 or 19.  I hadn’t long moved in with Phil and I didn’t want him to know that I knitted.  I was embarrassed and didn’t think it was something that a young woman should do.

So that aran jumper would be hidden at the back of my closet.  And when Phil was out at work and I was home on my own I would bring it out to work on it.  Eventually it was finished, but what would I do with it now?!  I couldn’t wear it or Phil would start asking where it had come from.  I couldn’t possibly admit I had made it.  And for the same reason I couldn’t give it to anyone I knew.  For months it remained hidden in the cupboard and I agonised over what to do with it.

Eventually I put it in a charity bag.  I have regretted that ever since.

I Didn’t Pick Up the Needles for Years!

Strange as it seems to me now,  I didn’t knit at all for over 30 years!  I think the whole jumper incident was the catalyst for this.  I honestly don’t remember picking up the needles again after finishing it. 

I didn’t even knit a single item for either of my children when they were babies or young children.  During this time I still crafted, but I was mainly into cross stitch.  I made many pictures of Winnie the Pooh characters to go in the nursery, but no clothing.  Not even a blanket.  I certainly had no plans for my own designs.

So what changed?  How did I go from not knitting a single stitch for decades to writing my own knitting patterns for my Ravelry and Love Knitting stores as well as being published in Knit Picks, Knit Now and Interweave?

Part Two

Find out how I made this exciting leap in the second part of this story.

If you can’t wait until then why not check out some of the patterns I have available?

Do you have a similar back story? 

Want the latest news and pattern updates?

Want the latest news and pattern updates?

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.

I'm so pleased to have you join our list, welcome!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This
Skip to content