Q&A with Bellish!

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Hello Makers!

If you haven’t already heard, there’s a new app for iOS that generates sweater patterns for free called Bellish!

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This revolutionary app allows the user to feel like a designer by offering multiple points for customization! Choose from different necklines, sleeve lengths, body lengths, and textures – all available in a variety of gauges with new options added regularly!

Ready to learn more? Check out our Q&A with Bellish Knitting below!

Makers’ Q&A: Bellish!


Q)
 How did the idea for Bellish come to be? 

A) Bellish began with the idea of creating digital tools for knitters. These days we use our smartphones and tablets for so many of our daily tasks, and it was a natural next step for us to ask if there might be a way to make those devices more useful for knitting. As knitters, ourselves, we wanted to create a dynamic, personalized knitting experience that went beyond what was possible with a PDF. 

 

Q) We love knitting sweaters, which is why Bellish is so appealing! Are there plans to eventually expand the offerings beyond the realm of sweaters?

A) For the time being, the focus is on enhancing the sweater knitting experience to the fullest. We’re building a robust library of options, with new sweater styles, yarn weights and embellishments underway (we add new features almost every week).  It’s certainly a possibility that we’ll add other kinds of knitting projects down the road as Bellish grows and evolves with the feedback of our users. 

 

Q) What is your favorite feature that’s included with the Bellish app?

A) There’s a real sense of immediate gratification when you’re able to customize your design in real time and see the textures and colors transform right before your eyes. Of course, we love the digital tools in the app: the row highlighter, stitch/row counters and clickable stitch checkpoints, but we think the absolute best thing about Bellish is that it makes it easy for any knitter to bring their sweater ideas to life. We’ve loved watching knitters use Bellish as a starting point and then add their own creativity to the mix.


Q)
We love how the Bellish app can allow knitters to fall in love with a yarn, then make a pattern around it. Based on your testers, what’s been the most exciting pairing of yarn and pattern you’ve seen so far? 

A) Knitters loved having the ability to create their sweaters based on the yarn they already wanted to use (rather than trying to find the perfect pattern, and then looking for the right yarn to go with it). One of our testers said that she had yarn in her stash from a friend of a friend’s mom, and it had been sitting dormant since the 1980s. The Bellish app made it possible to finally turn that yarn into the exact sweater she wanted it to be – she said that her friends were very impressed that she finally found a use for it.

One of the other things our testers have really liked about Bellish is being able to open the app while they’re at the yarn shop. They can stand right there in front of the yarn they fell in love with, and – with a few clicks – design a sweater to go with it, and know exactly how much they’re going to need.

 

Q) With any idea that blooms into reality, there’s always something to discover along the way. What’s been the most surprising feedback you’ve received from the beta testers and users so far?

A) Two things really stood out for us. First, we wondered how knitters would feel about seeing an illustration of their pattern rather than a finished photo. But when you think of each knitter as an individual designer of their own project, it makes sense that they would start with an illustration and then bring the sweater to life on their needles – our beta testers loved that process. Second, we were very curious about the skill level of the knitters who would find Bellish most useful. Would it resonate more with beginners? Experienced knitters? We had thousands of beta testers and the feedback was so interesting: it was almost exactly a 50/50 split between those who felt Bellish was perfect for beginners, and those who felt it was designed especially for experienced knitters. We were thrilled to see that Bellish is providing an inspiring and worthwhile experience for knitters, regardless of their skill level. It’s a fun, creative resource for any knitter!

 

Ready to download the app and give it a try?

CLICK HERE to download Bellish

Use the hashtag #MakersBellish to show us your progress on social media!

The Story of Whidbey by Gauge Yarns™

Gauge Yarns™ by Makers’ Mercantile® finds its inspiration in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. We are proud to welcome Whidbey as the first in this fabulous fiber line!

Welcome to the "Upper Left" corner of the United States.

Whidbey was made to keep you warm during those chilly PNW mornings, and cool during the warm afternoons. We achieved this by creating a blend of Bamboo, Superwash Merino, surrounded by a chainette of Nylon.

Whidbey Island is home to the most-visited state park in Washington: Deception Pass. With its mysterious coves, rugged cliffs, jaw-dropping sunsets, and an awe-inspiring high bridge, it's a bucket list destination for locals and international travelers alike. Whidbey Island is alive with color, and that is something we wanted to reflect in Whidbey's colorways.

We present to you a lively group of tonal colors, inspired by the local flare. You’ll find our colors have been inspired by pebbles, herons, driftwood, seaglass, the Puget Sound, starfish and loganberries, plus our bonus multi-color called Island, which incorporates a combination of all of our tonal colors into one. A perfect blending colorway!

Photo: Sara Codair

Seaglass

Photo: Logan Popoff

Starfish


Photo: Hannah Dickens

Pebble

Photo: Tyler B

Heron

Photo: Matthew Schwartz

Driftwood

Photo: Jessie Chou

Puget

Photo: Garry Knight

loganberry

island

We cannot wait to see what you create with our yarn! Be sure to tag @MakersMercantile in your social media posts using the hashtag #WhidbeyYarn so that we can follow your progress!

Need some inspiration on what to make? we have patterns!

Coupeville Hat
by Kyle Kunnecke

Chain to Nowhere Cowl
 by Makers’ Mercantile®

Scale Fingerless Mitts
by Nathan Grisham

Gauge Yarns Whidbey in Yarn Yay Colorway

YarnYAY!s Exclusive Colorway of Whidbey

We are so excited for the launch of Gauge Yarns exclusive new yarn Whidbey!

Inspired by Whidbey Island, located about 30 miles north of Seattle, the island forms the northern boundary of Puget Sound. Often referred to as Puget Sound’s Largest Artist’s Colony, Whidbey is home to numerous working artists, writers, and performers. The south end of the Island is a true haven for those who enjoy the fine arts. With its rich flora and fauna, including Deception Pass State Park (the most visited state park in Washington), we wanted to ensure that our Whidbey yarn was just as spectacular and special as its namesake island. 

And to go along with this new release, YarnYAY! has their very own exclusive colorway.  Check out Vickie Howell's Instagram unboxing. This colorway was available only in limited quantities, but Makers' Mercantile will soon have other colors of Whidbey in stock.

Want to see YarnYAY!'s One Year Anniversary Box featuring Whidbey? Take a look.