Play Designer: Veera Valimaki
Kits for Veera’s latest creation ‘Play‘ went on sale at the end of last month and were a huge hit. This is the third installation of the collaboration series that I have enjoyed sharing with designers and I have loved each and every design. Working with designers to create colours and kits has been so much fun and each designer and pattern has a distinct personality that I’ve enjoyed so much. Veera Valimaki is a wonderful designer, known for her use of colour and affection for stylish accessories and garments. I asked Veera to share some facts about herself here on the blog and here’s what she had to say:
Tell us a little about yourself
I live in a small village in Southern Finland with my husband and two boys and a cat called Väinö. I’ve never thought myself as a “country-person”, but it looks like it suits me well! I’ve enjoyed the peace and quiet – and there’s a wonderful community around here! I previously studied architecture, but I do feel that the best I can do is to stick with sticks and fibre.
What’s your knitting journey so far?
I learnt to knit in school – though my mother had given me a quick lesson before. I switched schools and all my new classmates had already learned how to knit. We were supposed to knit a vest and everyone was sketching rainbow-coloured beauties but I was so afraid of all the colour changes (stripes, mind you!). So I decided to keep the vest in two colors: red ribbing with blue body. You can’t imagine how disappointed I was when I discovered that how fun and easy changing colour actually is! Maybe that’s why I have been sort of fixed on stripes for all of my adult knitting journey! Later I picked up the needles after my boys were born, knitting was a perfect way of creating something of your own and something not baby-related! Plus it is easy to put down and pick up again. That’s when I found my passion.
How did you start designing and what is your favourite part of the process?
I started because I couldn’t find the”perfect” sweater. At first I didn’t write up the patterns, but when people started to ask for them, I thought I’d give it a go! Turned out, it was the most wonderful work I’d ever done! I just love the whole process of designing: from early ideas to taking the final photos; you must do so many different things! The best part though is to see the a happy knitter wearing one of my designs! It’s something I couldn’t imagine happening!
Was there a particular inspiration for this pattern?
This shawl is a new approach to short rows and shawl shape. I wanted to create a deep and dynamic piece and I think this is just that! With two colors the possibilities are endless, from a low contrast (like the sample) to a very striking combination.
What drew you to working with TUT yarns and a collaboration?
I just love Ce’s way of seeing colour, her choices are always so intuitive and well thought out! I have had the pleasure to do quite a few designs in TUT yarn and I think the colours each time are even better than I think is possible. It’s absolutely amazing to have this opportunity.
What else can we look forward to from you in the future?
Many fun things ahead! I’m working on a book at the moment, we’ll see how that comes along.
A huge thank you to Veera for taking time out from her busy design life to share some answers with TUT readers. If you would like to purchase your own ‘Play’ yarn and pattern kit, check out the Ravelry Group News thread for regular update news or please sign up to the newsletter.