A big decision….a little late

I made a decision last week that I really should share with you.

First, let me show you what I published last weekend:

Julie's mini mandala
Julie’s mini mandala

It is a simple design, a great stash buster, quick and easy to make.  It’s a gift tag, an ornament, or even a string of bunting, but most of all it’s a fun make.

I was just about to push the ‘free’ button when I halted…….this just isn’t fair to other designers.    And so my decision was to not publish it as a free pattern, nor will I publish any future new patterns as free patterns.

The reason I started selling my patterns many years ago was to be fair to all designers and operate on what I call ‘a level playing field’.  You see I recognised that there are a lot of designers who work extremely hard to make a living out of designing and selling patterns; if I made my patterns free then human nature is such that, even if my patterns were only half as good as some of the paid-for patterns, people would take my free patterns rather than buy those paid-for patterns.   Indirectly, I would be stealing the income of those designers if all my patterns were free.  But I couldn’t do that, I believe the designing world works best with lots of designers sharing their ideas and publishing their patterns.  The discerning knitters and crocheters deserve variety and quality, and the hard working designers deserve rewarding for all their efforts.

Even though that was my reason for starting to sell patterns, I was guilty of publishing some patterns free, because they were simple or small or used techniques that are very common.   But I have had this constant guilty feeling about it, it just isn’t fair to others.  Also, I do put a lot of work into my pattern writing, after all I am a tech editor and strive for high quality, and giving those free patterns is totally undervaluing my own work. And really ANY free pattern is undervaluing the work of all designers.

So I will not be publishing free patterns again, no matter how simple or small they are.  But from time to time I will offer discounts.   If you are a regular reader you will know that I have a forum on Ravelry.  Members of that forum (or people who like to read the forum) will find any discount codes there.   There’s a discount code lurking in there right now for the pattern I published last week, but it expires soon 😉

So what are your views – have I made a good decision?

Happy knitting and crocheting xxxx

5 thoughts on “A big decision….a little late

  1. Yes you have made a good decision. Making a living requires reembursment: money in modern society. Even though simple, or fun, you still spend time and skill on something and if someone else does not have those skills and/or time… well then they have to pay. Keep pricing reasonable and be proud of what you offer.

  2. Mandy

    Yes, the decision is the right one. It doesn’t whether you are considering crochet, knitting, or some other creative process, the design process takes time and skill. Those of us using the patterns produced should pay for the privilege of doing so.
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts about this topic.

    1. Thank you Mandy 🙂
      I have been reflecting on this issue for some time now and it feels like quite a big leap. I know my blog will get fewer hits, as will my facebook page and Ravelry forum. But I know those people who do stay will be here for the right reasons, and that can only be good 🙂

  3. You already know all my thoughts on the matter, but I just wanted to add my support to your decision.
    I wish more free designers thought about the consequences of free patterns.

    Lots of love Q

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