Stephen West, Craftsy, and Knitting Shawls

If you look to the right sidebar, (or the bottom of this post if you’re on a mobile device) you’ll see a little square ad for Craftsy under the header Affiliate Links. This link will take you straight to the Craftsy website, and if you make a purchase using my link I get a percentage of the sale. When I was accepted into the affiliate program I received a coupon code for a free class of my choice to review. At the time, I was in the middle of designing The Beach Collection and I had shawls on the brain, and on the needles, so I chose Stephen West’s Shawlscapes.

If you are not familiar with Stephen West, he is a very colorful designer of shawls and avant-garde knitwear. The Shawlscapes class is more of an overview of his methods and design process than a how-to, which is exactly what I was looking for. Even if you don’t plan on designing your own shawls you’ll end the class with a better understanding of hows shawls are built. He also offers several helpful little tips, like how to remember the difference between make one right and make one left, and how to block shawls while standing on your head.

If you haven’t tried Craftsy classes yet there are free mini-classes, taught by some of the same designers as the larger, paid classes, which allow you to try out the format to see if you like it. I wasn’t sure if I would like them myself, as I usually prefer to learn at my own pace from books, so I tried the Short Rows class with Carol Feller first. I found that it is not only informative, but entertaining, to watch a designer whose work I admire talk about her area of expertise. If you choose a recent class you also have the opportunity to interact directly with the instructor by posting to the class thread.

Some of the other Craftsy classes I’ve taken are Knit to Flatter with Amy Herzog, Sizing Knitwear Patterns with Faina Goberstein, and How to Say It: Pattern Writing for Knitters with Edie Eckman. If you are interested at all in knitwear design I highly recommend these three classes. There are also some new classes, like Understanding Knitting Patterns with Kate Atherley and Knitting on the Bias with Bristol Ivy that look fun and interesting.

Craftsy has dozens more, ranging from beginner to advanced, and not just knitting! There are classes on everything from photography to cake decorating and you can watch them any time you like.

Which Craftsty classes have you taken? Which do you want to take? Leave a comment below or on my Facebook page, or a tweet @kephrenknitting. I’d love to hear from you!

Thank you for knitting!