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Webchat with hand-knit designer, yarn developer and author Debbie Bliss: Wednesday 4 December, 1-2pm

(98 Posts)
RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 03-Dec-13 15:38:16

Knit designer-extraordinaire and Mumsnetters' favourite DEBBIE BLISS is joining us tomorrow for a webchat between 1-2pm today (Wednesday 4 December).

Debbie is the best selling author of over 35 books on knitting design. After starting her career making and selling knitted plants to stores such as Liberty's she went on to become a freelance knitwear designer, and after collaborating on a number of books including Wild Knitting , which has recently attracted a cult following with young knitters, she produced her first solo publication with BABY KNITS which was an instant bestseller. As well as producing books, Debbie also has a magazine which was launched in 2008. Published twice a year The Debbie Bliss magazine includes fantastic fashion knits garments for babies and children and also pieces for the home.

Twelve years ago Debbie launched her own brand of yarns and she's now involved not only in designing but in the research and development of new yarns. They are highly recommended by the Woolly Huggers and Debbie has been very supportive of their cause.

Join Debbie for a chat at lunchtime today and post pics up of your own knitting and crocheting creations before Friday 6 December, 10am. Debbie will help us to pick our favourite 3 pictures and the winners will each get a copy of Debbie's book Knits for you and your home.

RatherBeOnThePiste Tue 03-Dec-13 15:55:25

Oh <sqqquuuueeeeaaaaallllll>

JulesJules Tue 03-Dec-13 16:17:33

Echoing Pistey's squeal

PurplePidjin Tue 03-Dec-13 17:39:05

Hurrah! Just annoying we didn't manage to do a video tutorial one fsad

Debbie, what first brought Woolly Hugs to your attention?

And thank you very very much for the competition blankets thanks

KnottyLocks Tue 03-Dec-13 17:44:09

Ooooooooo

How exciting.

Thank you so much for the blankets. thanks

Chottie Tue 03-Dec-13 18:51:46

I wont be around tomorrow, but please tell Debbie that her baby blanket pattern was fab. I followed her instructions to the letter and ended up with a beautiful handmade (rather than homemade) blanket for my DGS flowers

3littlewomen Tue 03-Dec-13 20:38:09

Oh wow, my absolute most favouritest knit designer! In fact I blame Debbie for my rather large family of 5 DC as I had to keep having children so I could knit more gorgeous blankets/booties/outfits/toys from her gorgeous books.

So my question.....

How do you go about becoming a knit pattern tester? It's a job I have always coveted and would love to be able to excuse my knitting obsession as being "in the office"... grin

How do we upload pictures?? (scuttles off to deceide which project to photograph).

PurplePidjin Tue 03-Dec-13 21:32:50

Rachel am I precluded because I don't knit? Pretty much all my work with db yarn is on the woolly hugs website, but it's crochet...

RemoteControlGeekToyOfTheYear Tue 03-Dec-13 21:39:47

I'm almost too overawed to post my question! Thank you MN for arranging such a fab webchat guest, and thank you Debbie for - well everything!

My question is how did you make the transition from small cottage industry to full scale production/employer and did you need to rethink any of your principles in order to make the change?

No idea how to post pics, sadly. Do we just upload them to our profiles?

Oooo Debbie Bliss - fab!

My question - do you still have loads of woolly project of your own on the go or has it all become just work?

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 04-Dec-13 07:24:51

3littlewomen

Oh wow, my absolute most favouritest knit designer! In fact I blame Debbie for my rather large family of 5 DC as I had to keep having children so I could knit more gorgeous blankets/booties/outfits/toys from her gorgeous books.

So my question.....

How do you go about becoming a knit pattern tester? It's a job I have always coveted and would love to be able to excuse my knitting obsession as being "in the office"... grin

How do we upload pictures?? (scuttles off to deceide which project to photograph).

fblush We have started a new thread on Arts and Crafts Pictures as we realised that you can't post up pics here fconfused. (It's been a busy week thanks for your patience). We thought this thread would be also useful if you want to show Debbie anything during the chat - perhaps you want her help and it's easier if you can show her your project or if you just want her thoughts or advice on something. We will keep this thread open throughout the webchat and Debbie will be following it.

We'll keep the comp open until Friday morning - so post your pics before 10am on Friday and we'll announce the winners shortly after.

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 04-Dec-13 07:26:01

PurplePidjin

Rachel am I precluded because I don't knit? Pretty much all my work with db yarn is on the woolly hugs website, but it's crochet...

We've opened the comp up to crocheting as well - we'd love to see your work so please do post up pics of your creations on this thread before 10am on Friday.

Oooooh

My question is, how much do you think people really understand the value of really good quality hand knitted/crocheted items these days? (Obviously I mean those who aren't actually doing the knitting/crocheting - they tend to have a very good understanding of the effort and costs involved!)

I find that I will give people much-appreciated presents and they will say (taken by me as a compliment of course) "oh you should sell your knitted things". But I know that people wouldn't be prepared to pay the true costs that would make it profitable. (I also don't actually have the urge to turn an enjoyable hobby into work, but I know others would love to)

As someone who has just this week ventured into this world of knit...

How do you learn about yarn, what's good quality? what's good value? What is best for what project?

RatherBeOnThePiste Wed 04-Dec-13 10:21:28

My question is about putting colours together, I have seen a colour wheel chart, but some folk are truly and successfully adventurous when putting colour together. I see it aplenty with all the lovely blankets made for Woolly Hugs. Sadly I'm not one of these, I just can't think like that and I wonder, do you have any suggestions on how I can improve?

And another huge thank you here for donating the blankets to us, we can't really say how much we appreciate your generosity and support. Bless you.


thanks

GobbySadcase Wed 04-Dec-13 11:07:34

Oh wow. The biggest fuel to my yarn obsession ever!

What I would like to ask is have you seen a significant rise in the popularity of yarn crafts? I ask as I knit in public a fair bit and always get surprised remarks about it, albeit positive ones.

fossil971 Wed 04-Dec-13 11:08:10

Debbie, I have lots of your books and I love your range. I especially like the way you use lots of traditional details in up to day ways. Also the Baby Cashmerino yarns are a really great weight that you don't come across very often.

My question is, how to encourage people to have the confidence to learn to knit, crochet or sew? People often are amazed at things I've made that are not actually very hard at all once a few techniques are learnt. As above, they say "can you make me one" or "you should sell those" but I'd rather teach them to knit. I know lots of older ladies who knit (I am in the WI) but they say things like "I could never follow a pattern" or " I just knit hats for charity out of scrap wool, I've made 100 this year". How down-skilled we have become, when we could be so creative.

Despite your beautiful designs and many others, knitting still seems to have a reputation for being difficult, slow and only resulting in a horrible itchy jumper. Lots of yarn shops are still floor to ceiling pastel acrylics. (I don't live in London!) Is there an answer?

Woolfey Wed 04-Dec-13 11:32:09

Another one here who wants to say it's lovely that you're donating the blankets to Woolly Hugs thanks.

My question is rather nosy grin - Do you still have your own yarn stash even though you have access to unlimited amounts of yarn? Is it all your own brands or do you try lots of others too? Is it in a gorgeously calm organised craft room (that's how imagine it in my head) or is it stashed all around the house (like mine is)?

Sorry, rather more than one question there!

NomDeClavier Wed 04-Dec-13 11:54:23

I have a question about sewing up! I love knitting but making up is a nightmare and I can never set sleeves properly. My seams are lumpy or wonky even when I line the pieces up perfectly sad

Do you have any top tips?!

SuperNappy Wed 04-Dec-13 12:20:22

I don't have a question. I just want to say thank you smile

Kveta Wed 04-Dec-13 12:21:20

I have yet to venture into knitting - crochet is enough for me for now!

My wee sister is a knitted textile designer though, and is finding it hard to sell her wares, as she feels that her realistic pricing is being massively undermined by amateur crafters selling their work as a hobby. Do you think that this is a real problem in the world of handicrafts, or is there room for both the professionals and the amateurs?

lolancurly Wed 04-Dec-13 12:25:32

I'm new to knitting and lack confidence - where do I start?! Are online tutorials or face to face lessons best? Thanks

GoodKingWencesLACK Wed 04-Dec-13 12:25:43

oooh, gotta go out now so will miss this sad

Look forward to reading later though smile

TheNinjaGooseIsOnAMission Wed 04-Dec-13 12:38:22

I wasn't sure which thread to post questions on <easily confused> so will post the same on this one too, hope that's ok!

Recently I sorted out my stash and found a part made school jumper I started when my now 23 year old started infant school fshock do you have any unfinished projects hidden away?

Hello Debbie - what a treat to see you here on MN!

My question is this - I have four skeins of Debbie Bliss Andes yarn, in a dark rose pink and a lighter pink (two of each). What would you suggest that I could do with them (other than just stroking them and luxuriating in their softness!!)?

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