I'm lucky enough to be a stop on the blog tour for Stephannie Tallent's new book, California Revival Knits. As a fan of California architecture, I couldn't help but be interested in a book of knits modeled on buildings that, grouped together, "feature stucco, red tile roofs, coved ceilings, tile, tile, and more tile (with Spanish, Moorish or Mexican influences) and wrought iron."
After drooling over her book (which you can win a copy of by leaving a comment below), I had the chance to ask her a couple of questions.
What was your favorite part of this book's process?
I really enjoy all the big picture things: planning the palette, the yarn choices, the general pattern ideas.
But I really love seeing it all come together, too. I’m a big one for keeping myself organized via spreadsheets, and I admit I loved putting DONE in the pattern status column.
It was also fun getting the patterns to my group of test knitters & getting their feedback and seeing their finished objects.
And having the final PDF is tremendously exciting. I can’t wait for the print copy.
The photoshoot was a little nervewracking for me – I’d never done one before – but my photographer, Kathy, had fantastic ideas & made it as easy on me as possible. Kristi Porter, who modeled for the main photoshoot, was awesome too. I know the next will go smoother, now I know more of what I have to do.
Was there anything about bringing a book to the finish line that surprised you?
Just how long it takes even after all the initial stuff (patterns, photos, text) is turned in. There’s a big difference between self publishing a small collection of patterns yourself & working with a small indie publishing company (where, lol, it’s not always about ME).
What knitting project do you have on the needles now?
I’m currently working on a second pattern collection of my own designs, and am in the midst of working on a lace cami in Dragonfly Fiber Dance rustic silk. The back is done & I’m getting ready to cast on for one of the fronts.
If you’re familiar with my designs, two things probably caught your eye.
Designing with the silk is a first for me — I usually work in wool or wool blends. I really like the Dance silk; it’s a nubby silk noil that has lovely drape.
Also, I nearly always work seamless tops. I didn’t have any traditionally non-seamless designs until this one. But I decided the structure of seams would really help with this top, considering the inherent lack of bounce and memory of the silk.
After that, I have a couple hats for the book to work on next, and another sweater. Of course there are many more patterns, but that’s the order in which I want to tackle the projects.