Grab a drink with The Drunk Knitter - 8 questions with Saffiyah
2 min read time
What inspires you to pick up your hooks/needles the most?
When I first started knitting and crocheting, it was out of necessity. I remember not being able to afford good quality (yet fashionable) mittens during my freshman year of college. And so I crocheted myself a pair in an acrylic/wool blend that probably cost me $3. I remember being so proud of making something with my hands.
When you're designing your own patterns, what is your process?
Once inspiration hits (I’m usually inspired by streetwear), I will immediately start sketching, while researching stitch motifs and construction methods. I like to model the construction of my design from historical knits (shetland & fisherman sweaters are my favourites!). Once I’m happy with my sketch, I start swatching. Next, I start powering up those spreadsheets, blast some lo-fi girl (on youtube), make a matcha latte (half sweet, oat milk, extra strong) and start working on the math. I like my math to be completed before I cast on so that way I don’t have to rip back as much. Then I knit, tech edit, test and release. If at any time during this process I start not jiving with a project, then I would abandon it and start on something else. I don’t like releasing a design that I did not enjoy making.
Which colour palettes do you prefer? What draws you to them?
I love light neutrals. Oatmeal, greige, and blush are some of my favourites to design with because they show off stitch definition and texture. Every now and again though, I’ll break out a chartreuse or a variegated rainbow sock yarn for a little bit of spice.
Where do you do your best crafting?
I will knit anywhere. Whether it's a plane, train or NFL game, I will be knitting. I have a clear knitting bag that’s approved for most stadiums and venues and will knit unless it is downpouring.
Which projects are you more proud of?
It has to be my new book, Knit 2 Socks in 1. It took me years to come up with a beginner friendly way to knit socks two at a time. Here’s the thing: I love handknit socks but I don’t like the traditional approach to sock knitting. And so I simplified it using tried and true knitting techniques. I just feel so proud to have written a book that is now available everywhere.
What's your dream for your crafty future? That ideal space? That perfect project?
I just aim to feel completely fulfilled and content with my job. My ideal space is more of a spiritual one in which I create an ideal work/family balance. Since having my son Beau, I’ve been working on fully enjoying his childhood while managing my business. I didn’t want to skip out on going to the park or to the splash pad because I had design/teaching deadlines. Honestly, I feel like I’m almost there and am really excited!
What's your perfect piece of advice for crafters?
Just enjoy the process. Enjoy every minute of it. I find that I will cherish the product more if I enjoy the process.
What made you start your podcast, True Crime and Knit? Can you tell us more about it?
2020 was a crazy year. Between the pandemic and the civil rights protests, I felt like I needed to act. So I began True Crime & Knit, a podcast that focuses on bringing attention to cases that involve people of colour, because these are the cases that matter the most. The majority of my content involves missing & murdered black and indigenous women in hopes that someone listening may have information that would help solve the case! And we just dropped merch for the show which is really cool. I cannot believe how far this little show has come.