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Romance copy is that section of the pattern — usually on the first page of the pattern, or at the top of the pattern notes on the pattern description in Ravelry — that’s meant to engage you, the knitter.

It’s supposed to intrigue or inspire you. It tells you about the inspiration behind the pattern, or tries to tell a story about the design. It often ties in with the name of the pattern.

It’s a challenge for, it seems, many designers (per many posts in the Ravelry designer group: scroll down to Hunter’s post 5524 and go forward from there). I usually save it for last.

Things I include in the romance section (usually not all of these in every pattern):

  1. Inspiration
  2. Background of the pattern name
  3. Design features (can include stitch pattern sources)
  4. Benefits to you as the knitter, or what you’ll learn

It’s much easier when I’m designing something for one of my themed collections. It’s next to impossible when the pattern is based on stitch patterns that I just really liked!

Here’s the romance for my Artemisia Cowl:

The genus Artemisia includes California Sagebrush (Artemisia californica) and a whole host of cultivars. It smells fantastic in the garden, though can get a bit unkempt. Its foliage has a soft, lacy appearance.

The Artemisia Cowl includes one of the my favorite Aran Lace cables (#28 from Annie Maloney’s book, Aran Lace), flanking the larger panel that I’ve used either directly in Sedona or as a variation in Jackalope.

I chose these panels not only for aesthetics but because they allow the knitter to gain practice in two of the main Aran Lace techniques: paired yarnovers and decreases to outline the path of the cable, and yarnovers and decreases within the cable itself.


Sand Ripples is a bit more terse, just focusing on the design details.

This shawl features a lovely bi-colored cable pattern, complementary lace edging, and short-rowed garter stitch body. The edging, worked as a combination of stranding (for the cables) and intarsia (for the lace), is worked first. Stitches are picked up along the edge for the short-rowed body.

Do you, as a knitter, pay attention to the romance copy? Let me know in the comments!

1 comment

My mom likes to rearrange her (very heavy) furniture all the time. We’re talking not just a couch or chairs, but antique sideboards and display cabinets filled with her collections.

Frankly, I’m fine with the idea of it; she really enjoys rearranging stuff. However, she had back surgery last year (she did heal up great), and has bad knees, and I worry that she’ll hurt herself. I can’t make her stop. She’s very stubborn.

My husband would note that I am too. And I’ll sheepishly admit that the only reason I don’t do a lot of rearranging is that, in our small house, I’ve already determined the optimal layout of furniture for each room.

Having said that, my tendencies are towards decluttering and downsizing. I’m especially good at decluttering when I’m supposed to be working on something else. Productive procrastination!

Regardless, here’s what I have for sale. US/APO shipping only; your choice media, parcel or priority, actual shipping to be charged (prices below do not include shipping).

I have some freebies I’ll be tossing in for the first few orders totaling more than $30 (not including shipping).

If you’d like to purchase anything, please email me!

ETA: Wow, you guys rock! Here’s what’s left:

Knit Picks Collection Joyful Lace $14.99 (list 24.99)

The Wild West Collection Vol 2: Cables $19.99 (list 22.95) (I’ll gift you the PDF on Ravelry as well if you purchase one of these at this time) one sold, two remaining 

Mittens! booklet 9.99 (list 14.95) I’ll gift you the PDF on Ravelry as well if you purchase one of these, too, at this time!

Aran Lace DVD $12 (reduced!) plus Ravelry code for one of my Aran Lace cowl patterns if you purchase it at this time (Artemisia Cowl, Achillea Cowl, Coast Oak Cowl, or Applejack Cowl)

I still have a couple copies of Hitch and just one copy of California Revival Knits left on Amazon. If you purchase them from me (look for me (Stephannie Tallent) as the seller, or a line in the description stating “Please message me if you’d like your copy signed. Thanks!”), I’ll gift the PDF to you on Ravelry as well. (I’m sorry, if you purchase the book(s) from someone else, or in the past, I can’t honor this.) I can easily squeeze in Vol 2 Cables or Mittens! in with either of those, with no additional cost in shipping.


Knit Picks Collections (links included for your info to see the patterns included)
Wool of the Andes 2013 Collection $9.99 (list 14.99) sold
Celtic Journey $9.99 (list 14.99) (2 copies available) (I’ll also send you a code for the current version of Flidais, top of post, on Ravelry): both sold
Twist and Tweed $14.99 (list 24.99) sold
Creative Color $14.99 (list 24.99) sold
Petite Presents $14.99 (list 24.99) sold
Under 200 $14.99 (list 24.99) sold

The Wild West Collection (I’ll gift you the PDF on Ravelry as well if you purchase one of these at this time)
Vol 2: Cables $19.99 (list 22.95) one pending, two remaining
Vol 3: Stranded  $13.99 (list 17.95) sold
Vol 4: Textured $13.99 (list 16.95) sold

Women’s size large wooden sock blockers: $20/pair. Multiple pairs available. all sold


The end of last week the rights to the Flidais Stole returned to me. I’ve since laid it out in my own pattern format and added line by line instructions for the chart.

Here’s the pattern info!

The Flidais Stole combines multiple Aran Lace patterns for a beautiful, romantic result.

Both charts and line by line instructions are included.

Flidais is the Celtic goddess of the woods and wild things.

One size
Can by altered lengthwise by working fewer or more repeats

Finished Measurements
15 inches / 38 cm wide by 78 inches / 198 cm long

Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Worsted, 100% Peruvian Highland Wool (110 yards/50g), 10 balls. Shown in Briar Heather 25982.

US4 / 3.5mm straight or circular needles, or size to obtain gauge

24 sts and 28.25 rows = 4 inches / 10 cm average over Flidais pattern, blocked.

yarn needle
cable needle

cabling, novel cable stitches (definitions/directions given), simple lace, yarnovers, decreases, knit through the back loop
pattern is both charted and written line by line


Have you heard the terms sample knitter, and test knitter, and wondered what the difference is?

Some folks may define those two terms a bit differently, but here’s how I look at it.

A sample knitter:

  • Knits the pattern precisely as written
  • Uses the yarn supplied
  • Returns the sample to the designer/yarn company/ etc — whoever contracted them to do the work; they do not get the sample back
  • Work to a specific deadline
  • Paid, usually at an amount per yard

A test knitter:

  • Knits the pattern precisely as written* (see my comments below!)
  • Either uses their own yarn or supplied yarn
  • Keeps their sample
  • Work to a deadline (that can often be a bit more flexible)
  • Usually not paid, but can be

I use both sample knitters and test knitters, but for very different reasons.

I hire sample knitters to make, um, my samples, when I don’t have time to make them myself. My sample knitters are awesome: not only do they make beautiful samples in a timely manner, they give me feedback on the pattern and take great pictures before returning the sample to me. I use that sample for my photography, and often loan it to the yarn company who supplied yarn support for their use in trunk shows etc.

I know a lot of designers use test knitters instead of tech editors. I rely on a tech editor to catch problems in the pattern (and have started having patterns edited by two different tech editors: no one is perfect! as a tech editor myself, I know this).  My testers are fabulous in finding errors, but that’s not why I have testers!

I use test knitters primarily to have multiple finished projects visible on Ravelry, to show customers what the pattern looks like in different yarns, etc. I also hope it gives something back to my fans: they get a chance to knit the pattern before anyone else. I am also flexible in modifications: I figure if one of my testers is interested in modifying a pattern, customers may be, and it’s nice for them to be able to see that. I give testers their choice of any of my other Ravelry patterns as a thank you. I have a set of policies regarding testing here, which I made in response to questions from test knitters.