The Design Department is the place in Mary Maxim where the "magic" truly happens. The design team helps find new products for the catalog, develop new yarn ranges, design for all of our new Mary Maxim exclusive kits that include: knit, crochet, latch hook, plastic canvas, and general crafts. The design team also writes and proofs patterns and assists customer service as needed to work out customer's concerns and pattern issues.
The Design team keeps constant communication with customer service and our social media team to find out first and foremost of what people are asking for when it comes to new kits and patterns to design. Suggestions get emailed almost daily, and those are looked at first and foremost before anything else when it comes to choosing what to try to develop. Every member of our company helps with the inspiration process, we have a wall dedicated to ideas and whoever sees something fun, whether it be in a magazine, at a store, their own creation, we have them take a picture or write it down and pin it on our board. When the design team meets, all of these ideas are literally put out on the table and we look at what new yarns will be coming in and decide which ideas would work best for our customers and for our yarns.
Once ideas for designs are chosen, the team gets to work on the development of the patterns. This starts with deciding which stitch pattern they are wanting to use and developing a gauge swatch. Next, they draw a diagram of the shape they are wanting for the piece, and using the gauge swatch to figure out the number of stitches they should have at each point, they "map" out their pattern. Depending on the complexity of the pattern, at this point it may go to one of our home knitters or crocheters with the "rough draft" of the pattern and they work the piece up, making notes of any problems they are having, and bringing it in the office along the way so the team can look at it to see if it is coming out as they expected. Every single project gets a worksheet where we can verify the exact yardage of yarn that went into it, and we always add 10% to be sure customers have enough yarn.
Overall, Mary Maxim tries to cater to the customer when coming up with designs. We encourage you to keep sending feedback, and design ideas to help aid in the process of creating projects that you would like to make. Our goal is to make you happy, along with a quality project that will last for decades. We hope that you enjoyed learning about how our design process actually works and stay tuned for our next "Who is Mary?" feature to give you an inside look at what Mary Maxim is all about.
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