Designer Interview ~ Sunset Cat Designs

Designer Interview ~ Sunset Cat Designs

I had the wonderful pleasure of working with Stephanie Tallent when she was tech editing for Knit Circus, when Knit Circus was publishing their e-zine. She’s one of those designers who the rest of us admire and look up to…..and I’m pleased to include this interview with her in my Indie Design Gift A-long series.

Fairwell to Summer Hat by Stephanie TallentTell us a bit about yourself: 

LOL, that’s open-ended! I’m a small animal veterinarian — I do locum tenens, or relief, which means I fill in at clinics as needed, sort of like a substitute teacher. The good thing is that I’m an independent contractor, setting my own schedule, choosing where I work. The bad thing — which segues into my designing career — is that I’m only as busy as the economy dictates. I went from being able to book every day of the year if I wanted to being grateful to booking more than a few days per month.

How did you get started selling your designs?  

When my vet work dropped off I started knitting gifts for everyone. Like a lot of folks who design, I modified a lot of patterns. Then I started doing my own designs. I tend to throw myself into new things, so I embraced learning as much as I could about not just designing and knitting techniques but all the other stuff that goes with designing: layout, learning various new programs such as Inkscape then Illustrator, web design, etc.

What do you see as your design style? 

I like traditional techniques — cables, lace, twisted stitches, colorwork — but I really like to make things that are comfortable and flattering. Vintage-inspired modern.

What influences your designs?

Kelpie Mitts by Stephanie Tallent

Kelpie Mitts

All sorts of things — architecture (my book California Revival Knits was inspired by the color and motifs found in Spanish Revival architecture), popular culture (Hitch, the book I edited that’s just out, has patterns inspired by the films of Alfred Hitchcock), the Arts & Crafts movement, Art Deco, flora, fauna, geology….

What do you enjoy most about designing? 

Creating things. Making something.

Do you have any projects  coming up that you can share or give us a sneak peek of? 

I’m currently working on a collection of booklets inspired by the flora, fauna and geology of Arizona. I’m hoping to have the first out in the next couple months, then one every month or so after it.

Do you get to do much knitting for yourself? 

Snort. No.

What prompted you to participate in the Indie Design Gift A-long? 

I love the sense of cooperativeness from the community. I’ve always tried to promote fellow indie designers, and this was a great way to do so.

Byzantine Cowl by Stephanie Tallent

Byzantine Cowl

Has the GAL met your expectations? 

It has! I’m so grateful for how much work the volunteers who organized it have put into it. It seems like everyone is really enjoying it.

Would you like to see the GAL become an annual event? 

I would — this one is such a success.

Where can folks see your designs? 

My patterns are available on Ravelry, Craftsy and Patternfish. Hard copies of California Revival Knits and Hitch are available from Cooperative Press; you can get the eBooks of those on Ravelry as well.

Thank you Stephanie for taking time to visit with us, from what I know is a very busy schedule. We’ll be keeping an eye out for the release of your new design collection.

Happy Knitting ~ Jean

1 Comment
  • Tracy Lichter
    Posted at 15:08h, 17 December

    Thank you for your interview! Your cat that you include in some of your ravelry pattern pictures looks so precious!!! Your Exackta Hat pattern is very interesting! I hope regardless of how busy your vet practice may be at time that you continue to design patterns. Rav Id tweetee