Tuesday, June 19, 2007

If I owned a yarn manufacturing company. . .

I would sponsor patterns like crazy (and pay decent money to the designers for them). Just what kind of patterns?

Free ones.

Case in point: Look at Ravelry's top 20 popular designs. A majority of them are from Knitty (40%). The Mason-Dixon book is really the most popular book that I can see (with a whopping 10% of the top 20), and while they're taking the credit, the ball-band warshrag comes from the band of a yarn ball (read: it was a free pattern).

Another observation: the top stuff doesn't come from magazines (although, Interweave does have one pattern in the top 20)!

That's not to say you shouldn't charge for designs. I just think it would be in a yarn manufacturer's best interest if they started to commission designers to come up with patterns and post them for free. I know this happens on most manufacturers sites. I just think they need to start hiring some of the names we knitters all know instead of having anonymous pattern makers.

On the other hand, if I owned Knitty I'd start approaching the yarn manufacturers and show them what a powerhouse in knitting they've become. Magknits, too (the top spot in the top 20)!

I also feel that the Ravelry folks should start using the info they've collected to help pay their bills. I've noticed that they're starting to show the books/yarn links on certain patterns.

Now, I know the top 20 will change once Ravelry goes live. They only have 2,500 folks using the site right now, with a whopping 6,800 waiting to get their invites.

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