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Interview: Laura Goodman, Dragonwing Arts


Today’s interview is with Laura Goodman of Dragonwing Arts. Laura lives in SW Virginia and designs with several independent yarn dyers.

Laura Goodman, modeling Braided Cable Cowl.  Photo by Emily Mauger

Laura Goodman, modeling Braided Cable Cowl.
Photo by Emily Mauger

How did you get started designing?
I started designing when I couldn’t find a pattern on Ravelry that fit what I wanted for a particular yarn. I had gotten a skein of yarn from a local dyer, Unplanned Peacock Studio, and I really wanted a leafy scarf. I couldn’t find anything even close to what I had in mind, so I started scouring stitch dictionaries and found some stitch patterns I really liked. This became my Spring’s Beginning Scarf. I still love wearing this scarf regularly and have thought repeatedly of making it into a triangular shawl at some point.

What inspires your designs?
Sometimes it is something I have seen locally, such as the window at the Moss Performing Arts Center at Virginia Tech. Sometimes it is the yarn that gives me inspiration on it’s own, such as the yarn used for my Jack Frost Shawl. The theme for the yarn club was Fairy tales, and with the ice blue that had a metallic silver strand running through it, it made me think of ice crystals and snow showers.

Jack Frost Shawl

Jack Frost Shawl

Which comes first – the yarn or the inspiration?
It varies. Sometimes, the yarn I am given inspires the pattern. Sometimes, I am able to get a yarn dyed specifically to match my ideas. It is absolutely wonderful to be friends with an independent yarn dyer!

What characteristics do you try to incorporate in your designs?
I really love lacy designs and textures. I try to use shapes and textures to convey my ideas.

What is your favourite type of item to design?
LACE! Lace and more lace. I love to knit it, so it is what I am most drawn to. I’m trying to expand, as I know not everyone has my obsession with intricate lacework, but I always want to go back to what I love.

Spring's Beginning Scarf

Spring’s Beginning Scarf

Your desert island yarn? (if you could only knit with one yarn from now on which would it be?)
Malabrigo lace…. mmmmmmalabrigo. I can put more than one ply together if I need something thicker. Great feel, beautiful colors and I can afford it, need I ask for more?

What’s your “comfort knitting?”
Lace, believe it or not. I prefer if it has easy wrong side rows, but I do love how the design evolves and develops as I work.

Which is your most under-appreciated design?
My Princess Cut Diamonds scarf. I think I need to knit a new sample and get some better pictures. I think this is really one of my favorite designs.

Which three GAL designs are top of your list to cast on?
1. The Ambassador by Kimberly Golynskiy, but I have to get the beads still
2. Pelion by Henna Markkanen – a wonderful new release!
3. Rufflebye by Jennifer Dassau – I may have to make more than one of these, it looks like a wonderful way to use a hank of sock yarn!
I really doubt I’ll have time to get all three done, but wow, I want to!

Continental or English?
English – I have tried continental, but it’s not comfortable.

Princess Cut Diamonds Scarf

Princess Cut Diamonds Scarf

What’s the best thing about knitting?
The relaxation and the enjoyment of the finished product. It is so calming and enjoyable, and I end up getting something wonderful about it.

What’s the one piece of advice you’d like to share with other knitters?
It’s ok to make mistakes! If you have to frog a project, so be it, it just means your yarn lasts you longer! We all make mistakes, and it’s ok.

Any knitting/designing New Year’s resolutions?
I have two patterns on my needles I want to get done. I also would like to come up with some new ideas. I didn’t design much this year because life went and got in the way. I want to get my name out there and have more people knit my patterns. I would love to get enough of a following to actually have *gasp* test knitters and not have to do it all on my own!

View all of Laura’s patterns here. All photos are copyright Lee Meredith, Leethal Knits. All images used by permission.

What is the Gift-A-Long? The GAL is a big knitting and crochet designer promotion with prizes and more than 5,000 people participating in a giant KAL/CAL. Come join the GAL group on Ravelry!

posted under interview, Knitting

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