A Little About Me

How It Started:

When I was 12 years old I wanted to have some cute 50’s style dresses to wear! Retro wasn’t back in style yet and I couldn’t find any dresses I liked in stores. I bought a few patterns and sewed myself some clothes, but I kept finding ways to make the patterns more simply and more to my taste. I hate wasting time when I am making, so stream lining the process was high on my priority list.

I always wanted to tweak the patterns. I would have ideas for mixing it up and making them different and closer to what I was looking for. After a while I would just buy the material and make things with no pattern. The results were mixed of course, but it led to a lot of discoveries about shapes and how they work together and how to design things to fit the way I wanted using unique techniques.

Crochet had always been a happy place for me. I loved to manipulate the yarn and figure out new to me stitches. This was before YouTube and we didn’t have a stitch dictionary so I would just fiddle around with it and think of new things. Of course now I know the names of these stitches now. Extended Single Crochet, Treble Crochet, Waist Coat Stitch. But to my young mind they were fresh and exciting!

At 23 I started designing and selling women’s clothing and home goods. This was during the economic downturn of the earlier parts of this century, so jobs were hard to find, and after my fourth layoff I decided to give it a decent go. My results were mixed, but I learned a lot about designing and business. At the time I did most of my selling at local markets and fairs. As I write this we are just exiting 2020 so markets and fairs are not exactly a thing right now.

Fast forward a few more years and I found myself becoming a mom for the first time! My little man was going to be dressed from head to toe in Crochet goodness! I made hats and booties, bibs and blankets! When Halloween rolled around I was itching to make him into a Crochet Dragon. I couldn’t find any patterns that really appealed to me, so I decided to design it myself.

I wrote a few notes and kept decent track of the number of rows in each section. I often received requests for special orders based on my designs so I wanted to set myself up for success “Just in case”. What followed was 7 years of selling as many dragon costumes as I could produce, along with a healthy selection of special requests. My summers and falls were filled with green dragons and cups of coffee left to get cold on the side table.

I had one customer ask me if I sold patterns and I was forced to face the reality that I was indeed scared to write patterns. The finished product felt so secure to me. But explaining how to create it to someone else felt daunting. Years later my brain was brimming with designs I had created and wrote down in some format, and the hard facts that I was going to face my fears and climb the mountain of learning to design crochet patterns.

The first steps were unsure and shaky, but I have gained momentum (and confidence), and am running toward pattern design!

Since I came from a history of designing clothing I feel deeply connected to the shapes of pieces and how they work together. It gives my patterns an elevated and structured finish. I have used my love of textures and shapes to make each piece I produce. And I love to Keep It Simple! I want my designs to be straight forward and easy to create. I want you to enjoy the process and come back for more!

I fill my home with these pieces and enjoy the process of designing for both myself and those I love, and my hope is to share that joy with you all!

Ila Quinn Designs Crochet and Cross stitch desiger Accessible beginner and intermediate level crochet cross stitch patterns Easy to read beginner friendly
Welcome to my blog! I’s so glad you are here! Please wander around and see all the crochet and cross stitch patterns I have available! Also make sure you check out the Crochet blog for free patterns and information for handmade businesses!

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