Episode 18: Interview with Megan of Making Things

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This week the Making Things platform launched. In case you haven’t heard (which I’m certainly sure you have by now), Making Things is a brand new platform that follows a Netflix-style subscription service. For a fee a month, users get access to ALL the patterns on the platform.

Making Things launched less than 48 hours ago and already it’s a HUGE disruptor in the industry. It’s causing conversations and surprisingly, one topic that popped up among KNITTERS (not just designers), was about designer compensation.

I sat down with Megan, the founder of the platform (with a special cameo from Claire, one of the team members) to talk about why she created Making Things, her goals and support for designers, how the subscription-share model works to compensate designers, and answering some FAQ from you.

The goal of this episode is to inform, educate and empower you to decide whether or not Making Things could be a valid platform for you to add as an income stream.

At the end of the year or the beginning of next year, I’ll be returning back to talking about Making Things as I’ll have some hard data and numbers to share that will hopefully inform you further!


This episode was sponsored by Skillshare. As a listener of the show, you can get a two-month free trial to Skillshare Premium. Click the here below to view my top recommended courses for knitwear designers who are starting out and get your exclusive sign-up code at www.arohaknits.com/skillshare (contains an affiliate link).

Episode 17: When to Follow Trends vs How to Create Them

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This week on the Yarn Alchemist podcast, I answer a very popular question that plagues many new designers: should I be following trends? I break this question down and address the several layers that this question brings:

  • When is it appropriate to follow trends in knitwear designs?

  • The mistake that designers make when following trends

  • Why focusing on trends (if you're not doing this one thing) can leave you high and dry

  • How to be your own trend-setter.

This episode was sponsored by Skillshare. As a listener of the show, you can get a two-month free trial to Skillshare Premium. Click the here below to view my top recommended courses for knitwear designers who are starting out and get your exclusive sign-up code at www.arohaknits.com/skillshare.

Episode 16: 5 Lessons Learned from Pivoting My Branding Message

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The messaging behind my work as a knitwear designer is undergoing a shift after a catalyst moment with my audience the past few weeks. Despite it being obvious the direction my community wants me to go, I faced a bit of resistance to it. In this episode, I share what was holding me back and the 5 lessons I learned that helped me overcome my own roadblocks.

This episode was sponsored by Skillshare. As a listener of the show, you can get a two-month free trial to Skillshare Premium. Click the here below to view my top recommended courses for knitwear designers who are starting out and get your exclusive sign-up code at www.arohaknits.com/skillshare.


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Want to start designing your own patterns but get overwhelmed by the entire process? Don't know where to start? That's why I created this FREE resource for you.

In it, I outline the SWATCH Framework, which is my knitwear design methodology. I follow this system over and over whenever I'm working on a new design: it helps me stay on track, and guides me through the process in a logical and systematic manner.

Download the FREE guide today and start getting clarity on how you can start transforming yarn into designs of your own creation!

Episode 15: Lessons learned from Chef's Table

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This past week I’ve been watching “Chef’s Table” on Netflix. I never thought myself to be interested in a documentary series where people talk about food, but the way they talk about their craft is infectious. They have a reason for why they cook, and they see the value in their work. This season focused on desserts, and one chef said (and I paraphrase) “I know that my desserts aren’t healthy or have great nutritional value, but they give so much joy. In a long and stressful day, just having a moment to have that weight lifted off your shoulders for just moment…”. It has honestly been so inspiring - they are successful in their field not because they are masters at their craft, but because they believe that their craft is so much more and the value they provide is so much more than the food itself.⠀

In this week's episode of the Yarn Alchemist Podcast, I share my favourite lessons from the Chef's Table and how we can take inspiration from them and apply it to our work as knitwear designers. Once again I experimented with the format of the episode (which I really enjoyed): I did this as a live-stream on IG first! So what you'll be listening to is the replay of the live-stream. Doing a live-recording was a TON of fun as I was able to interact with you all who joined me for that. At the moment I don't have a set schedule for when I'll do my next live-recording (but they'll most likely be at 2pm JST), so just follow along on my IG stories to be notified of my next live-recording.


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Want to start designing your own patterns but get overwhelmed by the entire process? Don't know where to start? That's why I created this FREE resource for you.

In it, I outline the SWATCH Framework, which is my knitwear design methodology. I follow this system over and over whenever I'm working on a new design: it helps me stay on track, and guides me through the process in a logical and systematic manner.

Download the FREE guide today and start getting clarity on how you can start transforming yarn into designs of your own creation!

Episode 14: Want to learn Branding 101? Here's a Resource for You!

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Show Notes

There's a reason why I don't teach branding as part of SWATCH Studio. 1) Learning how to design is a lot already and 2) there are much better teachers out there who can properly articulate how to. Lori from L Knits is one such person! In today's episode, I review her book "Design Your Brand" an e-book that provides a great foundation for everything you need to know about branding your knitwear design business. 

Special Podcast Code: BRANDPRO (get $10 off!). Click here to get your copy today!


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Episode 13: Handling the "Business" Side of Knitwear Design (Part 1)

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Show Notes

Today's episode comes from a question that was sent in:

"I'd love for you to do a blog post or podcast episode about handling "the business" of being a designer once your first pattern has been published. For instance, what tools can be considered business expenses? What yarn? What software do you use or recommend for tracking income/expenses? Is it necessary to become an LLC or other "official" business through a local entity? Etc. I've been searching Ravelry forums looking for an answer, and I can't really find anything concrete about the "business" end of things. Thanks for any insights!"

In part 1, I share my insights into how and why Aroha Knits became an LLC, the programs I use and the mindset shifts that happened when I went from "hobby-business" to "full-time business". Because I am not licensed nor an expert in this field, I avoid giving any advice or "next steps". In part 2 of this series, I'll be sitting down with my accountant/CPA and get her perspective and expertise on this subject.


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Episode 12: How I use Slack for Test Knits

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Show Notes

Ever since I became a user of Slack last year, it's really helped facilitate communication between me and my team. One of my goals this year was to learn how to better run and manage my test knits using Slack! Slack is an app that was created for the purpose to ease communication between large groups of users. Today I take you behind the scenes of my knitwear design process and show you how I run my test knits and make it a more streamlined, smooth process for everyone involved.


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Episode 11: Elevating a Good Pattern to a GREAT One

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Show Notes

The topic for this episode came about as the result of a casual question I posted on social media a couple weeks back to my followers, "What elevates a good pattern to a great one?" The amount of feedback I received was so great (in worth quantity and quality), I wrote down the top 8 best responses. I've been applying these changes to my own work and been able to greatly improve the quality of my pattern writing. Here at the top 8 ways you can elevate a good pattern to a GREAT one!


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