Knowing me you could have guessed from another galaxy: my most useful tools as a designer are my knitting notebook and good pens. Not knitting needles, they come second. Why? Because without a way to put my ideas on paper and keep them safe, I would not have anything to knit! It’s as simple as that!
I actually have two notebooks: a simple yellow Leuchtturm 1917 (*) with grid paper to take all of my knitting notes, and an Hobonichi Techo Cousin Spring (A5) which help me to plan and jot down things on a daily basis.
My planning notebook is quite organised. Thanks to the Hobonichi layouts, I have three different layouts to play with: monthly, weekly, and daily. I use the monthly layout to plan out my appointments both personal or professional. I don’t use it as a content calendar though as it would turn messy and ugly real quick. I prefer to go digital for that and I’m using the free app ClickUp which is basically a Trello+Todoist combination. The weekly view is where I schedule my week (duh!) on an hourly basis.
Following Jenna Kutcher pieces of advice on batch working and productivity, I’ve added my Big 3 goals of the day each day on top and a weekly focus section to remind myself what I should be working on these days. I usually plan for the week on Sundays based both on my focus of the week and what ClickUp tell me I need to work on this week. The daily view is messy. I use it to dive into the detail of what I need to do this specific day in a Bullet Journal way and to jot down notes during the day.
My knitting notebook, on the other hand, is messy. I use it to write down every single pattern I ever create, sketch new designs, calculate prices, take notes on upcoming classes, store old or new charts that still need work on them, do a bit of bookkeeping sometimes, etc. It’s the heart and soul of Tisserin Coquet.
For my last patterns, aka the Falling Slowly Shawl, Hanging Gardens Cowl, and the Leaf Dance Socks, I tried to write everything in a Word document from day 1. Let me tell you, I won’t do that again. I’m a pen and paper kind of girl and analogue writing is my thing. We all have our special way to think, learn, and acknowledge things. It took me a long time to find mine. I always knew I needed to write things down on paper and with a pen to understand and memorise them. When I was still in university, I used to write drafts of drafts of revision cards, then drafts of revision cards, the actual revision card, and then a summary of my revision cards. Crazy, right? Well, kind of, but it was really effective for me. It turns out I work the same way for everything.
Writing things down helps me proof-read myself (which I’m really bad at on a computer screen), write drafts of patterns/courses, to organise my thoughts, and do all the calculations needed to write the pattern more accurately in order to release thoughtful and clear patterns to the best of my abilities.
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