Posted on December 20, 2010 at 2:29 pm

Dear Lauded Knitting Pattern Designer:

Thank you for making such awesome patterns for me to knit.  I thank you for your tireless creativity, the many nights you've spent staring at the ceiling vibrating with new ideas instead of sleeping.  Thank you for knitting swatches, for knitting yarn you were assigned instead of yarn you'd chose for yourself, and for knitting sweaters in a size that fits your model instead of yourself. Because of your work, I am constantly inspired to make stuff and my project queue is longer than my life expectancy. I will never despair for something to knit. I want to make sure that you know how much I adore you before I ask this favour of you, if you would indulge me the time for a request.

I know a little about the ways and means of making your way as a designer. For example, if you publish through a publication like Twist Collective, there is a techincal staff in place to check your numbers, ask you about construction logistics, and generally ensure that knitters can reproduce the sweater as you intended.

But when you publish on your own, you have to hire that technical editor yourself, assuming you do hire a technical editor (and I do so hope that you do). You wouldn't dream of sending your pattern out into the world without that small quality assurance, right?

So here's the thing: since you spend the money and the extra time in making sure your pattern is perfect, why not credit your technical editor on your pattern?

Here's why I think this is a long overdue idea. As a knitter, it would be great to know that the patterns has in fact been technically edited, that someone besides the you has checked the numbers.  Technical editors are the unsung heros of good patterns, and I know a bunch of designers who have whizes they turn to again and again, and I think it's time we knitters ask who they are. 

Please undertand I'm not interested in disputing your creativity nor am I asking that you share your reputation for genius.  I am merely suggesting that it is your responsibility to tell your customer that you are not only selling them a quality product, and that you owe a small amount of the quality to this person, who deserves a reputation for quality too. Before you know it, people will know at a glance that a pattern is a good value because it was technically edited by someone whose work they trust.  I doubt technical editors will ever be the rock stars some of you designers are, but respect is a kind of quiet cousin to adulation, so why not foster it? Please, consider this a small gesture that would make a big impact.

Thanks so much.

Your devoted fan

julia