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Keep asking yourself “what if” – Adventures in the TKGA Professional Knitwear Designer Certification Program

I took up knitting again after having taken a break for many years in 2019, hoping it would “de-stress” me.

2 years later I found myself knitting, designing, and selling patterns on Ravelry. I felt that to avoid getting stressed by knitting now, I needed to learn tools to “work smarter, not harder”, as my lecturer used to say.

At Christmas in 2021, I eventually decided to research a number of knitwear design courses for a thorough foundation in design and business. I settled on the TKGA program, which to me seemed the most comprehensive, with an excellent support structure, and very reasonably priced. “TKGA” stands for “The Knitting Guild Association” and the guild is based in the USA, but courses can be accessed by members from anywhere in the world.

This program prepares for a career in knitwear design. It combines areas of inspiration, technical skills and techniques, and each one of 3 modules contains exercises, questions and design challenges. Module 1 covers the inspirational part of the design process, module 2 focuses on all areas of design, and module 3 teaches the business set-up. The introduction starts with the sentence “Keep asking yourself ‘what if’ “, which explains the content in a nutshell.

Each module must be submitted within one year, and even though the course is concerned with the design aspect of knitting, a knitted sample needs to be posted in module 3. Every participant is in personal contact with an instructor, and the TKGA has a resource library online, free of charge to members.

As all course content is owned by the TKGA (and to keep you curious enough to want to check this course out for yourself), I will not explain the content of each module, but I will report about what I learned and did, resources I have found, and what I came across that inspired me to knit and design. Each blog entry will correspond with a task, and as each module builds upon the last, and my knowledge grows, I will add information to past posts such as the book and designer list, video links, and more.

If you are interested in enrolling in this program or would like to read about what it entails, please come back for your first blog entry on the 5th of February.

In my first post I will tell you about some noticeable Design courses I have researched (and decided against). Module 1 of the course starts with a book review, so in my second post I will discuss the books I found and now use for my knitting, for research, and as part of this program. Many amazing knitters helped and supported me on this adventure, so I will recommend my favourite online groups and podcasts to you which help to form this truly amazingly creative and supportive community.

I am not going to ask you to provide me with your email address to subscribe to a newsletter for regular updates, but I will post notifications of new blog posts on my Instagram page, and in my knitting groups (which you find in post 2). Please contact me if you have any questions, suggestions or recommendations!

Happy reading! 🙂