Saturday, January 28, 2006


I want to spend some time throwing light on some incredible knitters--my testers! There is an incredible bunch of people all across the world who, for the past ten months, have stepped up to the needles and signed up to help us test Figheadh patterns. I've been thanking them as a bunch, but I want you to know a little more detail about what they are doing.

Jane is on her seventh test for Figheadh. In ten months. And, yes, she knits other stuff too! She's just a devoted (and beautifully proficient) knitter, and as she keeps telling me, "I'll knit anything." She's an absolute joy to work with. Jane gives me her edits very clearly, and keeps in communication with me throughout the process. She's also a friend, and one of the only two Figheadh testers I've actually met in person and spent a little time with! She and her husband Larry are great folks. Hey Larry!

Sue just finished her sixth test and is asking for the next--just waiting on me to get the writing done. Another highly skilled knitter, she also keeps in very good communication with me and always handles her questions to me in a kind and patient manner--even when I've obviously made really, really silly mistakes. I feel that we are becoming friends, as well. I hope we get to meet someday, Sue!

Cathy is on her sixth test, and is a joy to work with. She always keeps a good sense of humor about the testing process. I know I can count on Cathy to stay on board and hit me with all the right questions when testing a pattern. Another person I feel I can now call a friend, Cathy will definitely be included in my East Coast fantasy knitting retreat. Well, I can dream, can't I?

Amanda is my no-nonsense, tell-it-like-it-is tester/editor. The first edit I got from Amanda was about three pages long--and it was a hat! I can count on her to include every little jot and tittle. She's one of the first ones who whipped my math into shape with those first patterns. They were doozies, I tell ya. Amanda has now done three tests and two edits. I haven't heard from her lately, though. Yoohoo! Amanda! Word up! (corny girl tries to be hip)

Meredith and Kassandra are on their third tests for Figheadh. I like working with both of them and they are two who also are becoming friends of mine. Meredith and I are in a knitting group together (although I am a bad member who has only made it to two meetings--ugh), and we email quite a lot on non-knitting subjects. She has her own editing business, so I know I can count on her to catch my writing oopses, but she is also a great knitter who will call me on omissions in good instruction in my patterns (not to mention straight-out errors--yep, mostly math...again). Kassandra and I also email back & forth on life issues and knitting technique. She is helping me learn more about sock knitting, for one thing. Kassandra is a writer herself, so she really helps me get the patterns written well. I hope these two stay on board--I need you, guys!

Jenn is also on her third test. The notes I get from her are brief, but I can count on her for quick tests and she just enjoys the whole process. Jenn is a constant knitter who has her own fiber business and creates beautiful yarn. Hop over and give her a visit!

Celia, Irene, Lisa, & Anjeanette have each done two tests for me. Celia's tests were both lace projects and we spent a lot of time going back and forth about the issues. She worked really hard on those tests and gave me excellent advice on improving those patterns. I hope we keep working together, even though she is clear across the world. Thanks goodness the Internet makes us close. Irene is my one crochet master (well, also my sister, Linda--the Crochet Queen--but she has her own sewing business going and I need to leave her alone!). If I have a pattern with some crochet included, it is wonderful to call on sweet Irene to help me out. Lisa worked on two major projects for me and was a joy. She has her own knitting ventures going, so I feel lucky to have her help me out. Anjeanette is another person I feel I am becoming friends with. I just like her whole life philosophy and know we will be doing more work together.

Grace, Jen, Andrea, Steph, and Tracey have signed on for their second tests, which are all in progress, and I hope we get to do many more! They are all very good at keeping in touch with me and I feel I can count on them.

There is quite a big group who did one test--some want to do another and some I haven't heard from lately. Violet, Amy, Janice, Kris, Linda, Emma, Becky, and Sally--thanks for being willing to keep testing. More options coming soon! Emy & Roxi are both super busy with their own business and I just appreciate what they did for me on those tests. Kenny dropped completely off the Figheadh radar--too busy achieving blog superstar status, I presume. Rock on, Kenny!Oh, those knitting guys! Thanks also to Lori. I hope to hear from you again. You really jumped on that hat test and whipped it into shape! She knit three sizes!

Whew! I could have gone on & on about this. Again, view some of the work done by these folks on our gallery page. I am still in awe of all this generosity and talent heaped on me. I didn't go into nearly all the detail I would have liked, but it's only a computer screen, only a web log, only so much a blog reader can be expected to read, for pete's sake! Thank you, all! Much excitement to come, I can guarantee you that!

On this subject, I want to point you to a wonderful post by a fellow designer. We've all heard a lot about the copyright issue lately (check out the article "A Matter of Principle" by Lance D. Reich in the winter Vogue). This post by Knittinmom goes into considerable detail about the work of getting knitting patterns out there. I appreciate her spending the time to write that post. I wish all knitters would read it.

Have a great weekend everyone! Thanks for stopping by!


Kassandra said...

Well thank you Jen! (( hugs )) You're equally wonderful, even if you enable yarn lust. ;-) I feel I'm getting as much benefit from helping you out as you get from me. It's a great realtionship. And I have no intention of leaving the Fig Ship. It's been great fun and a wonderful chance to learn, and grow; not only as a knitter but as a traveller on this big blue marble too. I'm honored to know you and work with you.

emy said...

Hi Jen,

You have been equally patient as well! Just keep me in the loop with your patterns and if I get some breathers, I'll chime in!