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Crochet Pattern Designer Wants to "Meet" YOU!

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    Crochet Pattern Designer Wants to "Meet" YOU!

    😀​ Hello everyone! I’m Amy. I look forward to “meeting” all of you, viewing your projects and exchanging ideas with you.

    I’m both a professional textile designer and a freelance writer; when I have down time from paid writing assignments, I enjoy sharing (mostly free) crochet patterns and tutorials plus other types of craft tutorials on my websites. Here's a photo collage showing just a few of the many patterns I have made available:





    I learned to crochet as a child of maybe 6 or 7 years old. As a teenager, I went to the library and couldn’t find any crochet books I was interested in, but all the knitting books looked appealing. So I taught myself to knit, but made a ton of mistakes with that – for example, somehow all my stitches were twisted stitches. I also unknowingly taught myself to “knit back backwards”, because the first project I chose was stranded colorwork, and I couldn’t figure out any other way to make that work.

    Later I earned a degree in textile design and had a knitting teacher who set me straight on how really to knit – but I still do a lot of wonky things in my hand knitting. Whatever! I double dog dare the knitting police to investigate, haha. But seriously, this is the main reason why I share a lot of free crochet patterns, but not nearly as many free knitting patterns. I'm totally proficient with machine knitting but have a lot left to learn when it comes to hand knitting.

    I graduated from design school in 1997 and then worked in the textile industry for years after that. I had a job coloring prints for apparel fabric; another job designing circular knitted fabrics; and yet another job designing upholstery fabric, and then later managing the same company’s entire design department. In 2005, I got a job teaching textile design and trend forecasting to fashion design majors at a design college in Los Angeles.

    In late 2008, thanks to the “great financial crisis”, my husband and I both lost our jobs. At the time, we were living in Santa Barbara, CA. I was working as a textile designer for a local apparel manufacturer and my husband was working as a sales and marketing manager for a local company. We realized that we couldn’t stay where we were; we weren't able to find other viable jobs available in the area.

    We made a list of all our options and chose the craziest one of all of them: moving aboard a sailboat and going cruising. That was an adventure!




    I had already started messing around with freelance writing, but that was the point at which I switched from textile design to freelance writing as my primary career.

    From 2009 – 2014, I was About.com’s “crochet expert”, which basically meant that I managed the crochet subdomain on their network – writing most of its content, posting free crochet patterns, and managing some other contributors who also posted patterns on the site. When I started working with the About.com network, the New York Times Company was the owner. In summer of 2012, the network was acquired by IAC.
    The transition began at about the same time my husband and I were sailing across the Atlantic Ocean. We crossed the Atlantic and the Mediterranean Sea together in a 34’ sailboat and then spent about 3 years exploring Europe and the Middle East.




    In 2013 I started a knitting and crochet website that I will be retiring shortly because hackers destroyed it. I am now in the process of moving all the content from that site onto a new domain with better hosting.

    In 2014, I stopped working with About.com and started doing freelance writing for a variety of other clients including digital marketing agencies. I also got more serious about growing my own network of websites.

    I'm now at yet another crossroads in my career. The client I worked with most frequently has decided to transition into doing something different, so I have to decide what's next for me. Do I want to keep freelance writing? Do I want to get more serious about digital marketing? or do I want to do more with crochet, knitting and / or textile design?

    I would really love to get back to working on designing crochet patterns full time, but so far I’ve had a bunch of setbacks with that. I was originally trying to use the same sort of business model About.com did -- free patterns supported by advertising revenue. However, along the way, I have realized that is not going to work for my own much smaller, but growing, network of craft sites. I took down all the Google ads on my sites, because I decided that is NOT the user experience I want for my website visitors. So I have to figure out a different way forward.

    I contributed some patterns to a pattern book, and that was a fantastic learning experience. I have been giving serious thought to whether that’s a business model I want to pursue further. I am not sure about it.

    I’m thinking that what I might try next is continuing to give away free patterns, but offering paid upgrades like symbol crochet charts and PDF downloads. If you have any feedback /insights to share about this idea, I’m totally receptive. I’m also hoping to learn more about whatever other opportunities are available out there for pattern designers; I look forward to learning more about where you’re all buying / selling / sourcing patterns. (And since I have 12+ years’ worth of free patterns and tutorials to share, I hope many of you will be able to take advantage of that – I am eager to share them with anyone who is interested).

    I look forward to participating here and getting to know you all. I am glad you’re here!

    Best wishes,
    Amy Solovay




    ​​​​
    Amy Solovay
    https://knittingcrochetcrafts.com

    #2
    Well hello and it is nice to “meet” you. Welcome to FiberKind! We are a community of fiber lovers (and enablers). It sounds like you’ll fit right in.

    If you have any troubles making your way around, let me know. Or anyone, really - we are all happy to help!
    Quilting is happening here! ❤️

    Stashbuster MAL 2022: WTD 0; YTD 0
    Stashbuster MAL 2021: +435
    Stashbuster MAL 2020: -286

    Comment


      #3
      Hi Char! Nice to "meet" you. Thanks for the warm welcome. I appreciate the offer of help. I am still looking around and figuring out what's here; it all looks like such fun. I just joined your cat group.
      Amy Solovay
      https://knittingcrochetcrafts.com

      Comment


        #4
        Hi and welcome! What a resume you have! Make yourself at home and join in on any threads.
        Debbie

        Stashbusting MAL WTD +16/YTD +25 (2021 -288)(2020-712)(2019-642)(2018-109)
        Book Challenge 0/30 (2021-26)(2020-55)(2019-51)(2018-35)

        I've come to the conclusion that collecting yarn, and using yarn are two entirely separate hobbies.
        Crochet Is My Yoga

        Comment


        • amysolovay
          amysolovay commented
          Editing a comment
          Hi Debbie! Nice to "meet" you. Thanks for the welcome.

        #5
        Welcome amysolovay

        So looking forward to seeing you around the fiber site. So many groups, so little time. I love to crochet and am always looking to hone my skills.

        Have a wonderful weekend.

        Comment


          #6
          Hi DJM! Nice to "meet" you. Thanks for the welcome! I look forward to seeing you around Fiberkind. I just joined a few groups and am looking forward to participating. Hope you'll have a wonderful weekend, too.
          Amy Solovay
          https://knittingcrochetcrafts.com

          Comment


            #7
            amysolovay - Welcome Amy! I look forward to getting to know you better and to look at your patterns.
            Naperville, IL - Growing zone 5b

            Comment


            • amysolovay
              amysolovay commented
              Editing a comment
              lovestostitch -- Thanks for the warm welcome!

              Growing zone 5b -- seems like maybe you're into gardening? Am I correct in thinking that 5b is a fairly challenging zone to garden in? Reminds me: I should check for gardening groups.

            • lovestostitch
              lovestostitch commented
              Editing a comment
              amysolovay - Knitting and gardening are my passions! I live in the western suburbs of Chicago. In the past, I've lived in Ohio, North Carolina and Texas. I think the Midwest is the best place to garden. I grow flowers, fruits and vegetables. We do have a gardening group but we need to chat more.

              https://fiberkind.com/sguncategorize...-the-best-dirt

            • amysolovay
              amysolovay commented
              Editing a comment
              lovestostitch -- Your garden sounds AWESOME! My "garden" is a tiny rectangle of balcony space that is shaded all day and gets snowed on about 7-8 months out of every year -- not exactly ideal. One of the many reasons I'd like to move...
              I joined the garden group and look forward to participating.

            #8
            Nice to meet you, Amy! You have had a fascinating career.

            It's always nice to meet another former Santa Barbaran. Such a beautiful community - we love going there to visit family - it's home. Meanwhile we currently live in northern California. We are retired.

            I also taught myself to knit, crochet, weave, etc. I have always had difficulty reading the more complicated crochet directions. I get so lost after a few rows. But give me a good picture and I'll improvise. I'm working on it.
            ​​​​ Right now I can't knit or crochet due to a shoulder injury. Maddening!

            Welcome aboard!

            Anne

            Comment


            • amysolovay
              amysolovay commented
              Editing a comment
              Hi Anne! Nice to "meet" you. Thanks for the warm welcome.

              I am so sorry to hear about your shoulder injury. I hope it will heal quickly and completely.

              I might be able to help with crochet directions, so next time you get stuck, please ask. If I can help, I will, and if I can't, I'm sure someone will be able to decipher them for you. One of the best things about crochet is all the zillions of possible variations -- but the downside is definitely that the instructions can get complex.

              Have you tried using patterns that include international symbol crochet charts? Symbol crochet charts are one possible way to clarify a set of extremely complex instructions. Many of the Interweave crochet books have those, and some of the books published by Stackpole Books have them. Also, if you can find old issues of Magic Crochet magazine, those frequently have them too.

              Lots to LOVE about Santa Barbara! The things I miss most are the farmer's markets, the beach and the great weather...but hopefully you have all that in Northern CA, too.

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