I love Annie Watts - her designs are full of whimsy and wit. (Example: her new design, Rock, Paper, Scissors . . . SHOOT!, which was just released today!) On top of that, she's a pretty cool mama of two. I hope one day to find myself in Colorado to pay her a visit. For now, I decided to interview her for the blog.
I started making things without patterns almost immediately after learning how to knit about 11 years ago, probably because of equal parts of not finding patterns for what I wanted and not knowing how to properly read patterns. When I started knitting I didn’t know any other knitters so I was sort of winging it for a few years. I started actually writing my patterns down after being hounded by many friends to do so.
Playful! I try my best to take a light-hearted approach to designs. I want to make patterns that others will be excited to knit. I want to make things that make the knitter feel clever and the wearer smile.
Most of my toy patterns are based on what my kids like. I like toys that are fun to make and cute to look at, but are also going to withstand the strenuous abuse from little ones. I like to make toys that are actually, you know, supposed to be played with and aren’t too fragile to handle.
What about your less-traditonally-cute-but-equally-adorable First is the Worst and the other two toys in that series?
This set started with the Third is the One With the Hairy Chest. My friend Jane had her third child last winter. She’s a knitter too and I wanted to send the baby a toy but couldn’t find just the right pattern. I woke up one morning with the chant in my head: “First is the worst, second is the best, third is the one with the hairy chest”. Obviously the third child needed a hairy chested doll and the rest kind of fell into place.
I usually think of the design first. Kraken Knuckles came to me all at once and fair isle was the easiest way to work the design. Same for Fightin’ Words. I generally have at least one or two colorwork patterns going at a time so when I finish one pattern, I think my mind constantly searches the back of my brain for the next one.