Five Questions for Susan

Susan Mills is CEY's Creative Director and also our most prolific designer. After adding designs from the new North River collection to Ravelry, I noticed she had 505* patterns in her portfolio. To mark this milestone, I asked her five questions about designing.

What was your first design?

My first published design was pattern 437 Catch Of The Day for Classic Elite in 1993. A family of pullovers in a basketweave stitch with cables.

What is your favorite stitch or technique to use in designs?

My favorite stitch or technique changes all the time but I always love colorwork, and I never get tired of Garter stitch. Right now I've been thinking and swatching cables.

Your most popular design is Molly – the Liberty Wool scarf knit with short rows  – why do you think it struck a chord with knitters?

I think knitters like  the ruffle-y edged effect without casting on or increasing to a hundreds of stitches. The 4 row repeat makes it easy to memorize and it's a great knit for self striping yarns like Liberty Wool.

Do you have a favorite design?

That's like Sophie's choice - but three of my designs on the top of my queue right now:

Lure of the West in Crestone    Cinnabar in Chesapeake
 Lure of the West in Crestone • Dunlow in Mohawk Wool • Cinnabar in Chesapeake

What are your 5 favorite CEY yarns and why?
1. Mohawk Wool – my new favorite yarn – has a wonderfully soft wooly hand with great stitch definition.
2. Fresco, for colorwork. The color range is great and the angora haze blends the colors and makes your tension look perfect (even when it isn't).
3. La Gran because I love how fast it works up, how warm and lightweight it is and how great mohair takes color. I definitely need to knit myself a new La Gran sweater this winter.
4. Alpaca Sox – my favorite yarn for scarves and wraps.
5. Soft Linen – I love the unique blend of fibers for colorwork and texture.

*make that 506 with the addition of this week's Web-Letter: a free mesh scarf design in brand new Tiverton Tweed!

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