Interview: 5 Minutes with Clare Devine
We sat down with blogger and knitwear designer Clare Devine
I think being able to share our passion is such a rewarding experience
Where did your passion for knitting first begin and what attracted you to the craft?
My grandmother, who lived in Yorkshire, was an avid knitter, but I grew up in South Africa and the warm weather didn’t lend itself to woolly jumpers. I didn’t pick up knitting when I moved to the UK as a teenager, when I could have done with the added layers, but instead when I was backpacking in Australia in 2010. It was winter in the south west so pretty cold and wet! I decided I needed a hat and popped into a lovely knitting shop on the southern coast. I googled ‘how to knit’ and off I went. I knitted my hat, became hooked and haven’t looked back. The main thing I’ve loved is the people I’ve had the chance to meet. No matter where I’ve been I’ve found welcoming knitting communities and that is something I treasure dearly.
What inspired you to set up your journal and the Knit Share Love site?
I really enjoy writing about knitting and sharing ideas, so posting knitting content to a blog seemed like the perfect next step on my journey. My first blog started in 2012, but I developed the Knit Share Love idea in 2015. I started using it as a hashtag on Instagram to acknowledge everything I felt about knitting and the community. From there it continued to grow and in 2016 I decided to centre my work on this idea.
Where do you find inspiration for your designs?
My inspiration comes in many forms, though it depends on the project I’m working on. Sometimes I’ll have an idea and search for the perfect yarn, but more often than not I have a beautiful skein and my aim is to create a design to let it shine. I’m a great believer that yarn speaks to us, and do my best to listen to the skeins I work with. Swatching is one of my favourite pastimes. I love incorporating interesting techniques or tricks into my designs to encourage knitters to try something new. Often I create designs around key techniques or construction ideas. I love clean lines and shapes, so often find myself drawn to architectural photographs for abstract inspiration.
Your work focuses on sharing your craft and encouraging others, why do you feel this is important?
The fibre community has been such a welcoming space, and for that experience I feel so grateful. I think being able to share our passion is such a rewarding experience and through my work I hope to encourage others to enjoy creating too. I love hosting workshops and creating spaces for us to share knowledge, experiences and inspiration is something I enjoy immensely.
Do you have any exciting plans for 2019?
2019 is going to be a great year. I’m very happy to return to the UK in March for Edinburgh Yarn Festival – I love this event and can’t wait to immerse myself in the fantastic atmosphere. I will also be teaching in Australia at Wool Gathering and later in the year I am teaching on my first knitting cruise. Design-wise, I am incredibly excited to have a design in this magazine! I’m also honoured to be working with Joy from The Knitting Goddess for her yarn clubs and am planning other collaborations with inspiring dyers too. Mostly I’m looking forward to meeting new knitting friends and catching up with old friends as I travel and work.
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