Eclectic Closet Litblog, Book Reviews & Knitting Designs

A litblog dedicated to book reviews/recommendations, as well as literary and publishing news. Now enhanced with knitting designs.

Interview: Cristina Ghirlanda


Today’s second interview is with Italian designer Cristina Ghirlanda of Minimi Knit Designs.

Cristina Ghirlanda

Cristina Ghirlanda

Who taught you to knit/How did you learn to knit?
My mother taught me how to knit when I was maybe 5 years old. I was more interested in crochet at that time. Then I have relearned knitting from the Internet in 2006.

How did you get started designing?
By pure coincidence. I’ve designed the Minimissimi Sweater Coat for myself, then I’ve got many requests for the pattern. That’s how I got started.

Minimissimi Sweater Coat

Minimissimi Sweater Coat

What inspires your designs?
I don’t know. My ideas seem to come from the air. But I’m sure that they are unconscious elaboration of what I see on the street and on photos.

Which comes first – the yarn or the inspiration?
For garments it is almost always inspiration first. For accessories it is mostly yarn first, I don’t like collecting a stash so I design accessories to use up leftovers.

What is your favourite type of item to design?
Sweaters! I’m more interested in designing simple sweaters with unique shaping and unexpected details rather than designing sweaters with intricate stitch pattern.

Tell me about “Caffe Latte”, what is the story behind this design?
That design came to my mind one morning while I was sipping caffe latte. “Caffe Latte” sounds just the right name for a convertible cowl!

Do you have an aspirational knit – a complicated/challenging design that you want to knit “some day” when you feel ready?
No, really. I love resolving challenges as they come. Life is too short to wait 😉

What is coming next? What’s in your release queue?
A color block pullover, a drapey vest, a kids pullover and a kids hat. Check out my Ravelry group if you are interested in test knitting!

Your desert island yarn? (if you could only knit with one yarn from now on which would it be?)
Madelinetosh Tosh Vintage! It is squishy and pill-resistant.

Which is your most under-appreciated design?
La Spiga hat. It is my go-to hat since this fall, but it got far less love than my other designs.

What’s the one piece of advice you’d like to share with other knitters?
Check your gauge after about 5 inches of knitting. Swatches sometimes lie.

Any knitting/designing New Year’s resolutions?
Finish all my pending patterns and take a break!

If you could have dinner with one knitting designer (living or dead) who would it be and why?
Elizabeth Zimmermann! She’s an amazingly talented designer and knitter!

View all of Cristina’s patterns here. All photos copyright Anneh Fletcher. All images used by permission.

You can find Cristina on the following social media sites:

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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My Knitting Patterns

Audrey II

Angular Path Scarf

Cartouche Stole

Fossetta Cowl

Fossetta Hat

Sargaço Shawl

Whitman Hat

Every Which Way Cowl

Every Which Way Hat

Every Which Way Fingerless Mitts

Gothic Forest Scarf

Valencia Scarf

Branching Path Cowl

Flower Bell Stole

Whitman Cowl

New Tech Cowl

Vieux Carré Stole

Stacks Socks

Anna Perenna Shawlette

Taming of the Fox

Don't Ask Y

Cantilevering Leaves

Amplification Stole

Combs Cowl

Mindfulness Cowl

Tipsy Scarf

Gridwork Scarf
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