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Calling all local Tennessee Designers!

Do you love to crochet, knit, or weave? Do you have dreams about handmade items that don't exist yet? Then we encourage you to put your imagination to work and submit your original crochet, knit, or weaving design for the 2024 Great Tennessee Yarn Tour! Keep reading to learn more!

About the Great Tennessee Yarn Tour

The Great Tennessee Yarn Tour started in 2023 as an event to encourage fiber enthusiasts to explore the rich variety of local yarn shops based in Tennessee. Over the course of several weeks, Yarn Tourists visit local yarn and fiber shops, discover gorgeous new yarns and supplies, and make new fiber friends - all the while enjoying the highways, byways, and backroads of the great state of Tennessee.

Moving into our second year, we are excited to welcome back many of our shop friends from 2023 and a few new ones. Each shop has its own personality and unique offerings - no two shops are ever the same! This uniqueness is also present in the hundreds of Tourists who go on the Yarn Tour adventure. What a great experience to be able to witness the rich and diverse tapestry of our fiber arts community in action! Realizing that uniqueness is worth celebrating, we chose this year's theme Uniquely Ewe.

Each Tourist who buys a ticket for the Great Tennessee Yarn Tour will receive a 2024 Travel Pack - a commemorative Tote Bag, Guide Book, Souvenirs, and Pattern Booklet. The Pattern Booklet is a new feature this year, where we will combine and professionally print this year's Official Patterns into a single, keepsake Booklet that Tourists can use to create one-of-a-kind Tour Souvenirs to remind them of their incredible journey for years to come.

 

We are currently seeking submissions from local fiber enthusiasts for this year's Booklet. Think of it like an art contest, but for patterns!

The Official 2024 Tour Patterns

The Official Tour Patterns are an integral part of the Tourist experience as hundreds of fiber enthusiasts from Tennessee and beyond will be buying tickets and receiving Pattern Booklets. This is a great opportunity for local-level enthusiasts and budding designers to share their creativity with a whole new facet of the fiber arts community. We will be dedicating a lot of effort into promoting the patterns and designers on our website, newsletter, and across social media platforms. Participating shops will be making samples based on the Official Tour Patterns that will be viewed by Tour participants and regular clientele.

We are approaching the Tour Patterns an exciting adventure within  itself - a creative journey to build your design skills and gain invaluable experience and exposure. We have a dedicated Pattern Team that will work with designers to grow their pattern-designing skills and offer guidance. We will hold virtual meetings, so that designers and the Pattern team can get to know each other, as well as create online groups to foster community and collaboration!

Design Requirements

Pattern submissions should be an original design that has never been published or shared publicly before (this includes blogs, newsletters, online pattern sites, etc.). The design should reflect this year's theme of "Uniquely Ewe" and showcase how to creatively combine mini-skeins.

  • Pattern Designs submissions are due by 11:59 PM, March 31.

  • Designs can be for crochet, knit, or weaving. 

  • Designs can be for any skill level, from beginner to advanced.

  • Designs can be for any category (shawls, socks, accessories, amigurumi, home decor, etc.)

  • Project should highlight the possibilities of using various mini-skeins in fingering-weight yarn.

  • Pattern Designers should be currently living in the state of Tennessee.

  • We want to build anticipation of patterns, to make sure they are a surprise! By submitting a pattern design, you agree to not reveal your design, sketches or photos, written pattern, etc. In other words - you agree to keep it a secret until told otherwise!

Yarn Guidance

For the 2024 Great Tennessee Yarn Tour, each participating shop will have an exclusive mini-skein in a colorway of their choice. These mini-skeins will be 20 - 25 g each (estimated to be 80 - 100 yards per skein) made of wool or alpaca (or a blend) yarn that's suitable for a variety of projects from socks to shawls. Tourists may purchase a mini-skein at each shop, but are not required to. When coming up with your design, then, the more flexibility the better! For instance, your design made advise Tourists to use at least 8 mini skeins, but could be adapted to use 17. 

You may also supplement the use of mini-skeins with a main color of similar yarn. See this blog post for examples from our 2023 Patterns!

Submission Process

  • Take time to brainstorm, sketch, and plan. Make sure that your idea is achievable and realistic. 

  • Create a mock-up of your design that includes drawings, sketches, and yarns used. Be sure to take notes about any special stitch or techniques used.

  • Make a swatch that acts as a sample of the finished project. It should include any stitch patterns that will be a part of the finished product and show off your technical abilities. Make sure to use fingering-weight yarn!  

  • Write a detailed description of your design and pattern! Tell us about the inspiration behind the design, construction, and techniques. What makes it a great “fit” for the Great Tennessee Yarn Tour?

  • Scan drawings and sketches.

  • Take pictures of the swatch. If you have already started on the project, take some "in progress" photos.

  • Bonus Points: Write out a sample of your pattern instructions as rough draft. Save as a Doc or PDF.

  • Complete this form: 2024 Pattern Submission 

  • Email 3-5 drawings, sketches, and photos of your swatch to Info@GreatTennesseeYarnTour.com . Include "in progress" photos of your project and a written sample of the instructions if available. Be sure to include your name and pattern title in your email. 

  • We are looking to select at least one proposal from each craft (crochet, knit, and weaving). We will notify you during the last week of April if your design has been selected!

What we expect from you...

If your Project Design is selected as one of the 2024 Official Patterns:

  • You, as the Designer, are responsible for all pattern testing and writing out instructions.

    • The Pattern Team can offer guidance on formatting your pattern and help with instructions as needed. 

  • Complete the project using fingering-weight yarn of your choice. (Could be a great stash buster!)​​

  • Provide clear, high-resolution photos of finished project.

  • A final draft of the pattern is due by June 1, 2024. 

  • Maintain communication with the Pattern Team via virtual meetings, join online discussion group, and email.

  • Work with Pattern Team to make adjustments/corrections to final version of pattern before publishing.

  • Submit a photo of yourself and bio/artist's statement. 

  • Be available to answer Tourist questions about pattern.

  • The Great Tennessee Yarn Tour will retain exclusive rights to your pattern through August 31, 2024. This means you cannot share your pattern in a digital or physical format until the Tour is complete.

  • After the Tour is finished (e.g. September 1, 2024), the designer is encouraged to make their pattern available to the public. You may share, post, or sell your pattern as you see fit. 

    • Provide the Great Tennessee Yarn Tour with details on ​how customers can purchase and/or find your pattern after the Tour. We will share with the participating shops and via our platforms, so that customers who did not participate in the Tour can purchase the pattern after the Tour.

What you can expect from us...

The Great Tennessee Yarn Tour is dedicated to making this an enjoyable and edifying experience for local Tennessee fiber enthusiasts. If you have ever thought about trying to design a pattern, we hope this process will be a beneficial experience for you! We have put together a Pattern Team of fiber enthusiasts who have experience designing and submitting patterns and have a heart for helping those who are new to the process. We will provide guidance and support as needed, including templates for your final draft and help with tech editing. We will utilize various communication tools - from virtual meetings and online groups to good ole' phone calls - to foster community and positive collaboration. 

If your submission is chosen as an Official Pattern, you will be given a complimentary ticket to the 2024 Yarn Tour, which will make you an "Official" Tourist. You will receive a 2024 Travel Pack (Tote Bag, Guide Book, Pattern Booklet, and Souvenirs), have access to Tourist-only promotions and giveaways at participating shops, plus be automatically entered into the Triple Grand Prize Giveaway at the end of the Tour. You will also receive a $50 gift card to the Local Yarn Shop of your choice (See participating 2024 Shops here). 

We want to use this opportunity to showcase the awesome and aspiring designers in our local area. The 2024 Official Patterns and Designers will be featured on the Great Tennessee Yarn Tour website and blog, newsletter, across social media, and in our printed materials. This opportunity could not only grow your skills as a designer, but expose you and your work to hundreds of potential future customers, as the Yarn Tour draws fiber enthusiasts from across the state and beyond. Participating Local Yarn Shops will be making samples of the Official Patterns, which means your work may be featured in multiple yarn shops across the state.

 

After the Tour is over, you may sell/share/post your Pattern however you like, to share your creation with the public and continue to build your business. We will provide you with a PDF of just your pattern that you may use to distribute. The Yarn Tour will share your information with participating shops, so that they can share with customers who may not have gone on the Tour. We will also keep your bio and links posted in the Tour Archive, so that website visitors can continue to learn about you and your design beyond the Tour! 

Ready for Adventure?

Since its inception, the Great Tennessee Yarn Tour has been about building positive relationships in the fiber arts community. We are continuously looking for ways to over-deliver and bring unexpected value to those who work with us. I know we're asking for a lot - your time, your creativity, your effort - but I guarantee it will not be in vain. If you take a chance and trust us with your designs and projects, we will use our time, our creativity, and our efforts to make sure that you shine!

If you are ready to embark on this Pattern Adventure, please submit your Project Designs by 11:59 PM, March 31, 2024. 

 

 

 

 

 

If you have questions, please reach out to use at Info@GreatTennesseeYarnTour.com.

Thank you for your time, creativity, and consideration. We are excited to start a new Pattern Adventure with you! Good luck with your submission!

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