This week, the West Highland Way Club passes through Strathendrick and Strathblane, close to where I live.

I walk through these beautiful valleys (or straths) every single day, enjoying the changing seasons and my surroundings. It is a landscape of great variety: the bare muir blooms with colourful flowers, pasture meets rocky outcrop, and verdant woodland borders watery bog. The landscape which surrounds my home provided perfect inspiration for something I’ve long wanted to design – a statement allover sweater in which vintage colourwork combines with a contemporary look and shape.

Strathendrick is knit in 6 shades of Milarrochy Tweed. The colourwork echoes the rich floral tapestry of my home landscape in summer.

Oversized does not mean shapeless, and there are key shaping elements here that make all the difference. . .

. . . the way the shoulder increases are worked, the top-down narrowed sleeves, the stepped ribbed hem. . .

I really love this look, just like I love the wide cropped look of Carbeth. Shape, silhouette and proportion are things I think about a lot, and which often inspire my design process. Everyone has different tastes and predilections, though, and I confesss that I’ve found some of the reactions to the images of me wearing these designs to be a little . . . weird.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been receiving some increasingly odd (sometimes verging on aggressive) communications about the shape and size of my body as unrepresentative, un-“average,” somehow less “real”. All I can say is that my body (aged 44, just over 5 feet tall, disabled by a stroke, white, wonky and yes – a little bit skinny) is about as real as it gets for me. We are not a large company and I model my designs simply because it is convenient for me to do so: using my own wardrobe for styling and nipping out with Tom for a photoshoot when the conditions are right. I will say, in all honesty, that modelling is definitely not my favourite part of what I do and confess that it is sometimes very odd for me to look back across a decade of wearing my own knitting and to see images of myself in jumpers and cardigans before and after my stroke. And sometimes I also find it curious that these modelled images also effectively provide a very public record of my own ageing process. But mostly I accept modelling just as part of what I do, and am happily largely able to avoid what is surely a completely natural tendency towards self-criticism (does anyone really like looking at pictures of themselves?) Finally, though I honestly feel that my physical body represents nothing but itself, I will say that as a disabled woman I feel it is very important for me to keep on putting on the jumpers, and to keep stepping outside to show you these things that I’ve designed and made. “I’ve had a stroke and I can model a jumper” is hardly a revolutionary sentiment, but it is one which often motivates me with the confidence to stand before the camera, and to stand in front of you.

Here I am in June 2010: five months post-stroke, proud of being able to walk again, and proud of what I’m wearing because I knitted it with a hand that could barely move at all. This is my body. Please remember that when you write to tell me that to you it seems less “real.”

thankyou.

353 thoughts on “Strathendrick (and a personal note about modelling)

  1. I,m stunned by the fact that anyone feels the need to put you down! To me you look so strong and pretty, and no one could represent your designs better than you. Stay strong and thank you for inspiring me.
    Henriette from Denmark

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  2. Bravo Kate. I love your designs and the beautiful images of you modeling them. These clueless critics are just that — clueless. You could not look more “real.” I’m a beginner knitter and my wonderful yarn store owner said “you will love Kate Davies.” She was so right. Hello from your fan club in Alabama.

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  3. I have only recently discovered your site here through Bloglovin and didn’t even know you had a stroke. What I saw was only a REAL woman modeling garments of her OWN design, and doing so PROUDLY. All this with a background of such beauty that it makes me envious of your good fortune and yet happy for you at the same time. The photography and the writing are so personal and describe so well what it is to create. This is your life, you enjoy it, and it shows.
    PS ~ I love those little ram yarn holders, where can I find them? ~ BC

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  4. Hi Kate, Bruce, Jesus & Tom :)

    I have been following you for years, back when your blog was called Needled. Over the years, me and so many others got to support your work and watch you grow as a designer and a writer and it’s been a very inspirational journey for so many of us. You ve inspired us to take on new challenges, in knitting and in real life, as you seem so determined and fearless. You are such a strong woman :) Since i started reading you, my own health went down hill. Multiple back injuries that left me in the bottomless pit of depression. Your blog, your patterns, your books, the photographs of scotland was a breath of fresh air to me :) you inspired me to start knitting again as i was going through a difficult time, and you inspired me to be a brave fearless knitter. I used to look at your patterns thinking i could never do it. But somehow, you gave me confidence that i could do it. My body has changed a lot during the last four years. Because of my injuries i have been bed/chair bound a lot and knitting saved me. It gave me hope, it got me out of that dark tunnel i was stuck in. It really saved me. And i wouldnt be knitting without you. Im now a few sizes bigger and my back is stiff. But i came a long way, i can walk now :) and following your post stroke recovery gave me hope. Reading your words gave me hope. Knitting your patterns boosted my self esteem and made me feel like i was no longer invisible as people marvelled at my knitting 😀 So i/we do love you as you are Kate, and it’s always lovely to see you sporting your new designs :) Seeing you wearing them is a big part of what makes me want to knit them. I still love reading your blog, i used to follow you on instagram but somehow i cant find you on there anymore. Not sure what happened there.

    Love to the four of you :)

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        1. Oh, surely not! Try again. I find that sometimes links and ‘follows’ just fail and have to be redone. Computers are not perfect! :)

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  5. look, YOU are fantastic! you have this fabulous, wonderful business you’ve started doing something you love and are so good at…on all counts and at all levels, from sheep to that beautiful ‘sweater’. As for people saying anything about YOUR body…that’s just not what it’s about…It’s about my own body…short, overweight, but muscled, large boned…I think i might look ridiculous in many of your sweaters…but that’s on ME….not you!.. I love STATHENDRICK and Carbeth! love the colors in Stathendrick..LOVE. not much of a knitter, but a girl can dream…(an old woman)..i would wear that in a heart beat; a New York Minnit! regardless of how I think it might look on my figure….i’m done caring about that kind of self-judgement based on ….whatever….Ilove the sweater…it’s beautiful and i can imagine wrapping it around myself. Now to learn to knit it. Go on with those people….

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  6. Dear Kate,
    I don’t often leave my comments even to the posts that I like, but this time I just can’t help. The first time I saw your photo, immediately following to thinking, ‘I want to knit this!’ was, ‘I want to look like her when I’m her age!’ And I had no idea that you’d had a stroke. When I found it out from your posts much later, I was even more delighted and respectful of you. That’s it.
    Oksana

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  7. Wow. I never cease to be shocked at the rudeness of people. Your body is beautiful and it shows your work beautifully. And if I want to see what your patterns look like on other shapes of body, I just have to wait a little while and check out Ravelry.

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  8. Thank you for reminding people that we all have
    bodies, limitations, and insecurities. But we also
    have a voice that is strong enough to set
    boundaries as well as speak to our limitless horizon.
    I love your work.

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  9. I’ve tears in my eyes… such cruelty of some people!
    You don’t deserve it. Nobody does.
    You are such a beautiful woman, inside and outside.
    Please keep modelling your beautiful designs and be proud of it!
    Lots of love and hugs!

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  10. Dear Kate,
    for each of your designs your instructions are extremely well made and easily to follow. Every instruction includes the gauge and measurements for nearly all sizes. It’s no problem to adapt your designs to almost any bodyshape. Therefore, it doesn’t matter, how skinny or tall the model is. Modelling your own designs is sign of authenticity and pride in what you’ve created. Compliments from a dedicated knitter.
    Anika

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  11. Dear Kate: I too am so very sorry that you have had to endure those negative comments. Of course, it makes complete sense for you to model your own designs. As a small business owner, why incur the additional cost of models and a studio, when you or your friends can model the items, you have the most beautiful studio just outside your front door and you have an amazing photographer as your life partner?

    And, of course, your body is going to be what it is – shorter than some, but taller than others (including mine); skinnier than some (mine again), but heavier that others; bustier than some, but less busty than others; and so forth. How does that make your body not “real”? I think these comments seem especially hurtful because you have been so honest and candid over the years about your struggles with your body and your recovery since your stroke.

    I hope you are heartened by the responses here. You are an inspiration to us all.

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  12. It’s amazing to me what some people will say….or maybe it isn’t in this day and age.
    When I was in my 20’s a nd 30’s I was 80lbs thinner and not disabled. In my 40’s I got extremely sick and everything changed. I am now 60 and who I was then was exactly that. Who I am now is more compassionate, and wiser for sure.
    Kate, your work is as beautiful as are you. I am in awe and inspired to try new things, especially when I see you overcoming your challenges. xoxoxo

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  13. Oh for Pete’s sake. I hope you go on modeling your creations for another 50 years. Ignore those absurd dummies! I can’t imagine they’e ever read a word you’ve written. And what could be more “real” than a fabricator wearing her own creations?

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  14. Kate, you are a beautiful woman, you have beautiful body. I am amazed by your work. I am amazed how well you cope with your limitations. You are inspiration to me. If somebody wants to criticize you – I think they are simply jealous, that’s all. It is their problem.
    Please continue working and sharing your beautiful images with us. Thank you :-)

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  15. Unbelievable! Dear Kate, you are an inspiration. I like your blog and admire your photos and designs. Do not let stupid comments affect you!

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  16. Your post has stayed with me for the past week or so since I read it. I really have no words other than “Why was it necessary?” for that person to share what they did with you?

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  17. Some people can only find something to complain or gripe about. I love your blog, your patterns, and all your husband’s lovely photography. I love your details and research–each pattern is like reading a wonderful story. You make a great model. I am full-figured, and if I want to see how a pattern will look on someone my size, I go check out your patterns on ravelry. Women of all sizes have knit your patterns (a testament to your work) and I can find someone close to my body type. Even if you were full figured or whatever (someone would complain about that), you wouldn’t necessarily be FF in the way another person is. Nothing appeals to everyone, not every garment is going to look good on everyone–and people to need to get over that fact.

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  18. As someone who has to make the largest size you offer for myself, I think that you’re modeling is wonderful. I’ve dealt with body shaming before and I think it’s sad that others feel the need to put others down. I myself still play competitive soccer/football at 35 against 18 year olds and can chest press women who are the ideal size. Stay proud of you’re body because while other people don’t know it you’ve put a lot of effort to get it.

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  19. OMG! The mere fact that there are people capable of being so cruel and narrow minded only proves how badly this world needs people like you! I am absolutely certain that most of the people who read your blog you will never hear from and all of these/us admire you and would never ever even thought any such comment possible.
    I normally never write comments myself but could not stay silent now!
    I have a lot of admiration for you AND the fact you model your creations.
    Being 44 myself, 158cm “short” and 62kg “heavy” and struggling with depression for a few years now (which does not exactly make one look young or fresh) I even have troubles posting modeled photos of my finished projects on Ravelry! You inspire me and give me courage. Thank you for that!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. My grandmother — the one who taught me to knit — used to say (a lot) “beautiful is as beautiful does.”

    Like others, I am surprised that anyone in this community of people interested in your work would make such comments. The delete button is probably the best response, as one commenter suggested.

    I am always grateful to you for your humour, intelligence, diligent research, and of course gorgeous designs.

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  21. pay no attention to the bitches.
    you looked beautiful before, and you look beautiful now.
    yes, i’ve been following your blog for al long time. and look forward to many more precious moments reading along with you.

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  22. When I was in my 20’s I had long blonde hair, was a uk size 12 and was 5ft 10 tall, I regularly got comments from people I barely knew like ‘I hate you you’re tall and slim’. Now that I’m a size 16, grey hair and a crooked (scoliosis) back no-one cares.
    I know that lots of your designs wouldn’t suit me and I would struggle to knit some of them, but I thoroughly enjoy your website and blog.
    Some people deliberately write nasty things on the internet to hurt and offend yet hide behind the anonymity of email.
    Are these people complaining about the ‘average models’ showing off your hats and mittens?
    Perhaps you should find an ‘average dog’ to do more modelling, the gorgeous Bruce clearly is just too full onl to demonstrate his favourite stick and ball accessories.

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  23. I’ve found so often that when people feel uncomfortable about themselves for any reason, rather than do a little self enquiry, they are inclined to blame whoever it is that’s unwittingly prompted those feelings. I had quite a high profile media job and was occasionally targeted by angry men whom I’d never met. I wasn’t what *they* wanted me to be, so they directed the anger at me. So strange and self centred.

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  24. Dear Kate
    I think you are beautiful, what surrounds you is beautiful and what Is inside you is beautiful.
    I t seems that you Are what Is out of you and probably some People dont understand this and see only shapes and sizes.
    Not everybody can breath the HIghlands.
    Only you can be the model of your creation, I hope you we ll keep on wearing them!
    Love Silvana from the mountains

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  25. Dear Kate,
    This post resonated with me deeply.
    I have colon cancer and had a re-section and am now unable to eat as in the past. I am pretty skinny and will be going forward. People who haven’t seen me in awhile have actually flinched a little when they see me now. I also look much older than even a year ago.
    But reading your words has uplifted me and given me courage. I’ve been very reluctant to be in any photos but am now thinking it is time. The Now is about as real as it gets, isn’t it.
    You and your design are so beautiful and I thank you for it and the continued inspiration you share.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Well said, Bonnie. Onward indeed. I’m also in the midst of treatment-chemotherapy, and post surgery, both of which have left scars and temporary loss of hair. It’s taught me a thing or two about body image! I share your reluctance to be in photos, but have managed a few now. I figure in better times it will remind me of what I got through, and that there’s more to me than just this process.
      And Kate, I’m a slim person, and the very reason I love your designs is because they fit me. Your modelling helps me decide what will suit; otherwise there could be a lot of wasted effort!
      I’m also amazed how people feel free to criticise my body shape when I wouldn’t dream of commenting on theirs.

      Liked by 3 people

  26. It strikes me that this colourwork chart could be very successfully plugged into a more universally flattering silhouette, like Ursula. Bit of maths, bit of fudging, plain sleeves with colourwork detail at cuff, job done.

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  27. Dear Kate
    You have a very good figure, look lovely in everything you model and design some super knitwear. The fact that you walk such a lot contributes to your shape, and you must have healthy eating habits.
    Hats off to you for making such a success of your business after such a health setback.
    Thank you for your interesting and well researched posts, your openness, your wonderful designs and tips.
    You are just fine as you are.
    Love Jean

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  28. You are an inspiration to 99.99% of us that read your column. Hit the ‘delete’ button on the others. Continue being Kate… She’s remarkable.
    I tell my girls – Dream Big and Be Brave!
    Hi to Tom & Bruce:)

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  29. Dear Kate,

    I am saddened and appalled that there are such people in this world. I have your books, yarn and have knitted many of your designs. I am always inspired by your designs not only because they are lovely but also because YOU are wearing them.

    Please know that ladies such as myself enjoy your presentations all the more because YOU are in these lovely pictures.

    Kindest regards, Alex

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  30. Obviously you have had a lot of comments, you don’t need mine but all I want to say is that when I look at your pictures I want to knit all your things. They won’t all suit me, but I look at you and my brain says ‘ I want to look like that!’ I love your style I wish I was your shape. You look great and judging my the comments most people agree with me.

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  31. Well, I’m like the physical opposite of Kate (5’9″, broad shoulders, extra muscles, huge boobs, and the bone structure of an ox), and will confess to a tiny pang that this gorgeous colourwork wasn’t for me unless I want to impersonate a sofa, but so what. Even if it isn’t also offered on a hat or something, I’ll be happy just knowing something so glorious exists. It isn’t all about me, and Kate’s oeuvre has always been impressively inclusive and flattering for a wide variety of people, and with her designs I’m always pleased to be able to pick something partway through the size range and have a bit of wiggle room for adjustments, rather than try and size up something where the range finishes at 48 inches. I’m spinning for an Epistrophy now.

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  32. Love your designs, love the photos, love the sweaters, and love, love, love that you model your own knits. The unkind reader who left nasty comments can go sit in a corner by himself/herself. You do so much good in the world and we all want you to keep on going! (Say Hi to Bruce for me!)

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  33. “Life is ten percent what happens to you and ninety percent how you respond to it.”
    Just carry on! I love your designs ❤️ You are perfect just the way you are!

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  34. I literally don’t know whether to laugh or wince, so I guess I’m doing both. I’ve always admired the fact that you model your own work. As a woman with an ample front porch, I feel wistful when I contemplate you wearing a design like Carbeth, but what else is new? It must be a surprise to find yourself a lightning rod for envy, but that’s all this is. Keep doing exactly what you’re doing.

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    1. I too have an established “front porch” as you put it so well, seemingly people pay for them which blows me away but there you go. If it helps I have found that a lot of lagenloOK clothing as long as it’s not too busy and worn for me actully looks pretty funky with big boots. This would fit the bill though possibly plain rather than patterned. Snuggly when watching the ducks on the canal from my kitchen chair x

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  35. I think that anyone making “mean” or derogatory comments about your body/modeling must have body issues themselves. I notice, also, that the current social media “climate” seems to encourage everyone to say what they will without regard for consequences (because many times there are none). I often think how different conversations/comments would be if one were speaking face-to-face. Anonymity can encourage thoughtless remarks and enable bullying. Keep on designing, modeling and having Tom take lovely photos. Ignore the haters….they are most likely people who would find something to complain about in anything.

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  36. I love that you model your own designs, and when you said you were 44, I thought you looked a lot younger, perhaps late 20’s! :) You look wonderful and are an inspiration, not only your beautiful designs, but that you persevered despite all the health issues!

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  37. I have always thought that as a designer you have been really inclusive of size variations and you have a good and well-graded size range. I’m bigger than you but I have always found your designs fit well in the armscye and across the shoulders in the larger sizes, which is not always the case with some other patterns. It’s a pity that the commenters that you mention aren’t as inclusive of the different sizes that people come in!

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  38. Dear Kate, I have been following you for quite some time now and cannot begin to say how beautiful I find you, your work, Tom’s photos and everything you write your thoughts about. Your photos and articles have made me smile and cry so many times and I just cannot comprehend the meanness of anyone feeling compelled to put anything about you (or anyone else’s creativity, for that matter) down. Keep on designing, knitting, and documenting your beautiful process of “aging” – I prefer maturing (I myself am soon turning 43) and being brave enough to overcome your disability. God bless you! Adéla

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  39. Dear Kate! Just read your blog post and am so angry with whoever made such an idiotic comment. It is not only practical, as you said, to model your own designs, but BRAVE. Furthermore, you are beautiful and have an incredible sense of style. I love the attention you give to details in your designs. I learned to knit colourwork, thanks to you, making Sheep Heid, Carousel Tea Cozy, and a Rams and Yowes pillow for a wedding present. Currently, one of my 21 year old daughters can hardly wait for her Carbeth.

    In the meantime, keep designing, keep knitting, and KEEP ON MODELING! And Tom, keep taking those spectacular photos. Thanks,

    dana

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  40. Dear Kate, I am not even sure I quite understand what your critics might be talking about–you are a beautiful, talented, admirable woman who does inspiring work. I do mean that you are lovely in the physical sense, but your strength, courage and ability to rework your life after such a major change point to another definition of beautiful. It puzzles me that someone–or more than one–could bother to take the time to be so mean-spirited.

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  41. Thank you for sharing!! Although I have a very different body type than you, I’ve always been drawn to your photographs. The combination of Tom, yourself (before I even knew your amazing story) and the knits you create are magical and I wouldn’t want anything to change. Thanks for sharing with us!!

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  42. I am so delighted that so many fans have rallied to support you… Kate, you are amazing in every way!!! What a beautiful design and gorgeous colors!

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    1. Dear Kate,

      Youre books are a joy to read, I love youre beautiful desig, knitting, clothes and its just lovely and wonderful that you model all this beauty yourself. Please go on and be proud of yourself and beautiful.
      Annette from the Netherlands

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  43. I adore the new sweater, and it looks fabulous on you. Tom’s pictures are always a delight, because they are good, because the landscape is glorious, because the model is beautiful, and because there is love in every shot. Some people are jealous, unhappy, and unkind, but it is about them, not you. I feel sorry for anyone who can’t see or appreciate the beauty of what you are and what you, Tom, and your small company are doing. Just keep it up.

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  44. Your body and my body are very different shapes and sizes, and so I must use some creativity when looking at photos of you in a garment to imagine what it would look like on me. For that reason, I do appreciate when designers choose models of different shapes and sizes to model a piece. But for anyone to suggest that your body is somehow less real is just mind blowing! I admire your thoughtful response to such rude comments, and appreciate that you shared it here!

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  45. I LOVE seeing you model your own knits! How much more real can it get? The reality is that every living one of us is a different shape and size. It’s why we all knit – to create gorgeous garments that fit us personally.
    Your story has been absolute inspiration to me over the years. Your clear and elegant writing, detailing your personal experience of injury and recovery, always makes my day a little brighter.

    The absolute balls of these critics to comment on what you look like. how ridiculous.

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  46. I read this post yesterday and was so hurt for you, I didn’t know what to say so thought I would wait a day and see if anything uplifting came up. It’s still just as bad today. Others have written things so eloquently I can’t add anything to this event other than I am so very sorry this happened to you. I have been following you for years now, have watched your hard earned recovery from your stroke and have been delighted to read of your travels deeper into knitting, designing and fiber. I love it all. It’s hard to dismiss ill minded people who feel they need to be critical of others instead of themselves but hope you realize that for 1 snide remark, you have thousands standing around you. (: Keep up the good work and thank you for sharing this part of your life with us. I look forward to each and every post.

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  47. Every time I see you modeling your beautifully designed and executed knitted garments I am encouraged to make something similar for my septuagenarian self. You give true life to every photo shoot. How very sad it is that people feel the permission to speak ill in comments on a blog, truly one of the saddest pieces of commentary on electronic communication.
    Bravo for all you do! Your work is always a bright spot in my reading of blogs and books.
    Kristin

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  48. While I may have a thing or two to say about the beauty standards of the fashion industry, I find it very odd, that some people seem to equate ‘real women’ with women of a certain (plus) size. Any woman who overcomes a serious health issue and builds a sustainable business from her own creativity and tenacity is indisputably every bit a ‘real’ women.
    If one finds, that some changes are needed in a design to suit ones body type, there’s plenty of good guidance to be had. I’ve had lots of good advice on shaping technique from eg Ysolda Teaque, if it’s okay to mention another designer here.
    Agreed, the world is quite unkind to overweight people, but that is NO excuse to be unkind to skinny people. Honestly!
    To quote a danish actress: ‘Speak kindly of your body. Otherwise it gets sad and will squeeze your soul’. That applies to other people’s bodies as well.
    … and now may we have some peace and quiet to enjoy the lovely designs from the WHW!

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  49. Oh for goodness sake, how horrible for you Kate. I’m so sorry yoou’ve been subjected to this sort of mean-spirited nonsense. I’m sure you must have felt very upset and somewhat surprised by such comments. Keep on doing what you do and never stop just being yourself. Much love, Susie x ps I recently had someone tell me I’m too old and fat to be running marathons!

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  50. I usually don’t comment on the internet, but after reading about the unkind and rude comments about your body and modeling, that ignorant people had left you on your blog, I had to respond. It’s interesting, after reading your last blog and seeing your photos of you modeling Carbeth, I was thinking how beautiful you looked and what a great figure you had, and how lovely your sweater looked on you. I do not understand people’s mean comments. From your blog you seem like a very intelligent and well read women. You don’t need me to tell you to just ignore these small minded people and not allow them to get in the way of what you and your husband do so beautifully. Together you and your husband bring such beautiful art with your knit designs and visual joy with his photography. Thank for for all your lovely blogs. So sorry you had to be subjected to such cruel criticisms.

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  51. I always love to see yourself and Mel modelling and Tom’s beautiful photography. I appreciate when designers and their friends do their own modelling, although I think quite a few identify being in front of the camera as there least favourite part of their work.
    Just a personal comment about the Strathendrick essay: I’m not disabled, but I have had a seriously dodgy knee since childhood and I’ve had numerous surgeries. I really related to the section about walking on uneven surfaces. My balance is not great, it can be painful and I worry about falling over. You described the issue so eloquently, thank you so much.

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  52. I think it is great that you model for your own designs. Ignore negative comments!

    My one suggestions would be that you also have someone dissimilar from your self, in size/shape, show us how they design would look on them. For something like Strathendrick, which is a not-usual shape, it would be helpful to see how the garment drapes on a larger, less slender, figure.

    Looking forward to seeing more of the designs in the comping weeks. And to working with the lovely new yarns.

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  53. I honestly can’t add much to the supportive comments you’ve already received here, Kate, but I have to chime in anyway. 1. OF COURSE you model your own designs, WHY NOT? Who better than the very person who designed them to her own taste & style??? 2. On an objective basis, the modeling photos are always beautiful. Stunning photographs, clearly showing unique design details, well styled. What’s not to love? 3. We’re talking about clothing KNITTED BY HAND, duh. Larger sizes require more time and material than smaller ones, which is the practical reason that samples are usually in a small size. It’s your own good fortune that you can fit into them. Of course you should take advantage of that blessing. 4. I figure I can’t make everything I love as fast as it comes out anyway. If I’m not sure how it will look on me, I wait until someone closer to my shape & size has posted a photo on Ravelry. Let’s hope people of all shapes & sizes feel comfortable enough to continue to post those photos. Unkind comments toward anyone are counter-productive in that regard.

    Kate, you clearly have a very large following of people who love your designs and your modeling, as well as your writing (and Tom’s photography). Thank you for your inspiration, your work and your voice.

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  54. Unkindness is so depressing. We think you are very brave, we love your designs and your modelling. And seeing how many positive comments this post has brought will, hopefully, assure you of the tremendous love and support from the ones who matter – the kindly folk: knitters and admirers of you and all you mean to us and Tom’s photographs and the gorgeous dog.

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  55. Kate people who write cruel remarks are saying more about themsleves than about you. You are just fine, we love your knitting and we all love you the way you are.

    Liked by 3 people

  56. I am pretty much your opposite, physically. Well, a bit taller, MUCH rounder, big boobs and a lot of bum. I’m also slopy-shouldered, short-backed and uneven due to scoliosis. I like seeing you model your designs – firstly I can tell straight away it’s one of yours, I totally covet your wardrobe and the locations are just perfect. Yep, you are a completely different shape to me and that’s *fine.* I can usually judge if a design isn’t going to work on me, if I’m not sure I just go on Ravelry and have a look at what others look like. I suppose it would be nice to see a larger model *in addition* to you but a) most other designers don’t give a shit, b) it adds a chunk of cost c)people would still bitch anyway because some people just have no manners and ought to be ashamed of themselves. As we’re all different shapes anyway it doesn’t really matter – the main thing is inclusivity in sizing which you already do – the rest is up to us knitters to figure out if we need a few little tweaks.

    But basically there are a lot of bitchy jealous people out there. I think you look great and brave (none of us are getting any younger and hell, it’s nice to see someone accepting it) and they need to go and “suck the mop” as my mother would say. Keep kicking ass.

    Liked by 4 people

  57. I am agreeing with (“liking”) everyone’s comments–and then feeling badly for those upon whom we gang. These times call for inclusion. It’s a given that we love your work, Kate. That’s why we’re here. We are fans of your patterns; your honest, interesting, and articulate writing; Tom’s photography; and best of all, Bruce galavanting about your landscape like the dog that he is. BUT (or shall I say, AND…) I am also willing to grant that the critical, albeit aggressive, commentators who long for representation in your showcase are well-meaning. They must like your blog or they wouldn’t be part of your audience. And darned that they are human and jealous of your beauty. Let’s forgive them, include them, heed their feelings. We all have our hitches. I would love to lose 30 pounds (on wine and chocolates, please), I would love to knit like you, run a business as well as you, live in a place as glorious as you, and have a contributing partner like you. But I wouldn’t want to deal with a stroke or the pressures you put yourself under. Maybe people confuse admiration with desire. You think? Let’s be kind to our critics and respectfully forgive our common humanity.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Only people who give respect, deserve respect. While I don’t know the exact language this person/people used criticizing Kate, obviously it was not respectful or Kate would not have bothered to mention the whole situation in the first place. I think this bully now sees that Kate has defenders who are not going to “turn the other cheek” just because that is the politically correct thing to do. If this person contacts Kate and apologizes for her/his comments, then we can think about forgiveness. Until then, I defend my friends.

      Liked by 2 people

  58. You know…I doubt we would agree on much if we merged out of the Knitting lane…but I respect that you generally let the business side remain just that – the exchange of value for value. However, when you note that you are being JUDGED for wearing your own creations (likely by people who declare judging anyone to be a horror) I am truly angered. As you say – you had to teach that slender frame to work again – from scratch, like a baby. You did so with so much self-perception, so much honesty and erudition that…well, you gave me hope that I might recover from an illness with half of your bravery. NEVER let anyone direct your actions about your business – private or otherwise. You are lovely, wise, and skilled beyond measure. And you are under NO obligation to meet the modeling needs and desires of others. Your post said it kindly – but it reminded me of an old saying – Keep your own fish guts to your own sea maws. The world would be lovely if only we would.

    Liked by 2 people

  59. Dear Kate,
    Thank you for a reminder of the life lesson quoted by Henry James: ‘Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind; and the third is to be kind.’
    Not all humans have grasped this concept yet. In kindergarten, one of the most important lessons learned is how to problem solve with others. Little humans learn to stop, talk, listen, and fix. They identify the problem,and beyond apologies, they ask how to help each other feel better.
    I hope the warmth and support from so many have helped you and reaffirm how important the work is that you and your loving team are doing. Keep on surrounding yourself with those who are kind. Let us all know what else we can do to help.

    Liked by 3 people

  60. Ignore those naysayers! They have nothing better to do than feed their jealousy and petty thoughts. I LOVE that you do your own modeling. You are such an inspiration to others and I get great pleasure cheering you on. Just look at what you have accomplished! And I look forward to reading about other great things you will do, some you haven’t even thought about yet! Just think of all the beauty if the landscapes we would miss if Tom and you and yes, even Bruce, didn’t share with us Tom’s photography. Give them the attention they deserve which is NONE!
    Go enjoy the remainder of your weekend and focus on the joy you create and share. Beth

    Liked by 2 people

  61. All I can say is I absolutely love your work, still not brave enough to try your patterns. It is good that I am not your model, short, fat. Keep doing what you do and ignore the idiots out there. One strong determined lady.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Be Brave Sandra, there are some lovely examples of Kate’s work on Ravelry on all types of body shapes. I’m tall and quite overweight with a large bust and I FEEL great in Kate’s designs.

      Liked by 1 person

  62. I was saddened to read this yesterday and my immediate response was via Twitter as this is an issue very close to my heart. Cruel words and comments are all too evident in social media now and to think anyone has made Kate feel like this is heartbreaking. No matter who we are, no-one deserves opinions on things like this. I know only too well how comments like this can be dangerous! Personally I suffer from issues which I wouldn’t want to happen to Kate or anyone with such thoughtless comments.

    Kate has grown stronger with every design collection produced and has succeeded to build a community to knitters, excited to experience a new launch with patterns arriving in our libraries accompanied by excellent photography and styling. Please keep strong and keep on showing how your designs look on you as we can see how they will look on others who share their projects via Instagram and Ravelry. Being in front of the camera is difficult enough but to have anyone be so unkind is upsetting. I only share ‘part of me’ as I know it is helpful for others to see how my knitting fits/looks but due to body image issues I am too scared to show my face as I am in total fear of things like this and I am by no means seen by as wide an audience as Kate. Kate doesn’t stand above her audience, her blogs/newsletters and styling bring help and consideration to all readers. Where else can we read about the weight of our stitches? It was through Kate’s sharing I learned to steek and keep going back to remind myself when necessary.

    Thank you for openly posting about this issue as it really helps people (like me) who have a serious diagnosed illness which means that comments like Kate has had to endure have the potential to destroy others (myself included) completely. Such a brave response out of hurtful words from unknown people and one which I will remember.

    Liked by 6 people

  63. And just yesterday our knitting group was talking about you. We were saying how much we would like to all knit your beautiful new sweater. We are defintely all different sizes and shapes and mostly over seventy. We thought the design was perfect as one that would look lovely on anyone. We went on I must admit talking about how wonderful it was to see you modelling all your creations, a stunning combination, beautiful you, beautiful country, beautiful designs and of course beautiful photography. We are hoping you will put the sweater out as a kit soon. Thank you for making the world a more beautiful place. Ann Ross

    Liked by 2 people

  64. Not a nice thing to experience and from One who could not model her knitwear I think you do great . . It does seem to me that your honesty about your stroke is an act of bravery. Keep up the wonderful work

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  65. So sorry to hear you’ve been getting negative comments. I hope it doesn’t put you off modelling your own designs – I love to see knitwear modelled by the designer.

    I sympathise with your situation – my sister has always been naturally slim and when she was younger people seemed to think it was acceptable to comment on this and make assumptions about eating disorders etc. It amazes me that people feel the need to comment on other people’s appearance.

    I follow your blog to see your amazing knitwear, read your thought-provoking and informative posts about the history of textiles and see your and Tom’s photos of the beautiful landscape around you (print more calendars next year, please!)

    I have been so inspired by your journey from academic to knitwear designer and by your recovery from your stroke, which has helped me and my friends through difficult times.

    Please keep doing what you’re doing and ignore this tiny minority.

    Liked by 3 people

  66. Dearest Kate,
    You are quite simply an inspiration, I have no idea what is wrong with some people and their inability to register that their comments can be hurtful :0( I love all of your gorgeous photo shoots and even though your body shape and size is different from mine, I so appreciate that your designs are all self modelled as I can see how one style sits as compared to another, it’s part of your story so please don’t let the negativity win.
    Hugs, Mel

    Liked by 2 people

  67. What happened to ‘if you have nothing nice to say, then say nothing at all’? I do not understand people’s negativity. We are all different, thank goodness, and I for one love seeing you model the garments even though we are completely different, as it gives me a more personal insight and ‘real’ connection to the garment. They are all so beautiful and you have overcome so much. Keep on doing what you do Kate!

    Liked by 3 people

  68. Dearest Kate You’ve always been an inspiration to me. I found you long before your stroke and have such a “model” person to aspire too. Long life and best wishes to you and yours always.

    Gemma B

    >

    Liked by 2 people

  69. Well said. I’ve always found the pictures of you modeling your own designs to be very inspiring. And this newest design is, like so many of your others, truly beautiful. Thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

  70. There definitely isn’t much for me to add! I love seeing you and any other designer model their own work. The way garments get styled then really contributes to my understanding of what the designer was thinking. I can go from there for my clothes, my body, my life.

    I love your photo shoots, love seeing your styling, love the glimpse of a life I do not lead.

    You put a lot of yourself out here. So many people have benefited in ways that we each may not even be able to articulate or realize.

    Thank your for your work and the way you share it. You enrich the world.

    Liked by 2 people

  71. I’m not sure what anyone could have said that’s negative – but it could only have come from some kind of jealousy. Probably cause you look so great. Disregard it all, please. Your pictures, Tom’s pictures, your designs, Master Bruce, and you ongoing success: For some it might be envy producing and the only recourse they have is petty and silly. You’re divine – in so many ways. I wish I could have met you last year at the Edinburgh show when I would have told you, in person, about the woman I met standing on the subway platform in New York City. Being a knitter, and spotting your design on her lovely neck, I complemented her on her work and told her I recognized
    it as yours. She clasped her hands to her heart and said, “Oh, I love Kate Davies.” There you go – a continent away – and your work and spirit and influence lit up a subway platform in NY – You’re divine!

    Liked by 3 people

  72. For me- I LOVE that you, Tom, Mel, and other friends model your designs. It makes me connect to you in a more direct way than as a maker alone. Thanks for putting your gorgeous selves out there so much.
    I’d like to know, do any of the male designers have to put up with criticism for their modeling?

    Liked by 2 people

  73. I’m so sorry you’ve been subjected to the thoughtlessness and cruelty of some people. I, for one, am jealous of your lovely figure, and I think that a similar feeling may cause some people to try to make you feel badly about yourself. Because my figure is older and less lovely I sometimes have to work hard to imagine your creations for me and to decide if each is suitable for my body. However that is in no way your fault or your problem. I’ve seen many comments from women who I imagine look like me who are perfectly able to see the beauty of your creation while understanding it isn’t for us. You have no obligation to please everyone, and I want you to know I love your work and I admire you and your husband for carving out a life that is right for you both (and Bruce, of course). Please continue to model your creations and know that many of us admire and respect you and your work. XOX

    Liked by 1 person

  74. Body-shaming is not OK. Period.

    If you were publishing some magazine where you were hiring professional models and focused only on one body type to the exclusion of all others, that would be a valid criticism – a critique of the choice of paid models which says something about the values of the publication. But calling out your personal body as somehow inappropriate? That’s just one more example of the way that women’s bodies are subject to a level of public scrutiny and commentary that’s completely unacceptable.

    Thank you for sharing this. And thank you for being a real person here. I, for one (entering my 47th year), love seeing you as you go through the years of your life.

    Liked by 2 people

  75. From across the oceans I am shaking my head over here in dismay…. May you and your family have a gentle weekend and remember this….Extraordinary talent always meets with ignorant adversity now and then….

    Liked by 3 people

  76. Dear Kate,
    This is my first comment, although I’ve been reading your blog for a few years now. I felt compelled to do so, first of all because when I saw this new design I was blown away… and then because I wanted to add my voice to this friendly chorus of support. I enjoy everything about your blog and feel privileged that you share so much of yourself with us. Your response was beautifully worded and shows great insight and poise. Thank you for the countless ways in which you inspire us!

    Liked by 2 people

  77. Hi Kate. When I saw the title of this post, I knew immediately what you would be referring to. These odd comments were all over the last few posts where you were modelling that beautiful carbeth jumper. I noticed the trend at the time and I am so glad you wrote this post to set Pelle straight. We all come in different shapes and sizes, and if a style doesn’t “suit” a particular person (or at least if they think it doesn’t) that isn’t any reason to write slightly off kilter comments about your body. Great post. K

    Liked by 2 people

  78. I always love seeing your designs modeled by you, in your landscape because it gives me a sense of the context of the maker and gives depth to the design. I feel this is very important because so much of what motivates a design is embedded in that designer’s context; who you have been and are now, what you see every day, what dominates your life and brain at the time. It must be hard sometimes to put yourself, not just your body, out as the face of your business sometimes but I’m always grateful that you do.

    Liked by 1 person

  79. Dear Kate,
    I am astonished to hear that people have made derogatory comments about your modeling. I think you look fantastic, exuding grace, elegance and confidence. Echoing many of the comments on this blog, it is great to see normal people modeling clothes – I certainly don’t think that the typical stick thin model is normal. What is normal anyway??
    I love your designs and colour work but my knitting skills are not up to trying them out yet. Instead your blog is great mind candy after a busy day at the office, which obviously gets in the way of any knitting! And wishful thinking that I could whip up Carbeth in an afternoon.
    But perhaps we should spare a thought for thoes criticising you? Does the criticism really reflect their own insecurities, envy at your success and your abilty to deal with the challenges you have faced? If that is the way we should look at it, perhaps we should feel sorry for the people in question.

    Keep that blog – designs, modeling and photographs coming. You go girl!

    Best, Fiona

    Liked by 1 person

  80. Sigh….why is it that some people feel the need to make such snarky and hurtful comments? I can only say that they must be lacking something in their own pitiful lives. I enjoy, and look forward to your beautiful posts – so many interesting topics, insights, your life’s journey, your courage, and of course the amazing knitting and photography. Thank you for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  81. Kate…I love your designs and especially your new sweater! It is simply fabulous, and the shape that I love best! Thank you.
    Now…..I have no idea what is the matter with some people but their negative comments say much about them and nothing about you. You are a fabulous human being!I respect you and feel blessed you are in this world at the same time I am!
    Julie

    Liked by 2 people

  82. Kate, Thank you for sharing so much over the years! You are a true teacher who has taught us all a thing or two about your world. Although I would not knit this pattern for myself, I love the color work you have created. I could see this motif knitted up into mittens which I think would be stunning! Hint Hint!

    Sorry for the negative or unusual comments from some . . . Kate, you and Tom let’s toss in Bruce are just inspirational!

    Liked by 2 people

  83. I am stunned that you have received negative comments about your body and modelling your knitwear. I love seeing designers model their own designs, as it helps convey the style and “personality” of the garment and the passion of the designer. I also enjoy seeing real people, real designers, real knitters, of all shapes and sizes model their designs or the garments they have knitted by other designers. All these generous designers and knitters allow me to share some of theie creative processes whilst aiding me to choose which garments I wish to make, and any adjustments I may need for my body, based on the variety of real images presented.
    I love your blog. I love your work. I rarely comment, but I must say how much i enjoy your beautiful, thoughtful, intelligent, reflective, and well-researched writing, as well as your respect for the endeavours of others. Reading your blog inspired a trip to Iceland (which is a big deal from Australia for someone who rarely travels) and probably more significantly has had me think deeply about the sources and processes involved in creating yarn.
    Tom’s photos and Bruce enhance your work wonderfully!
    Finally, thank you for writing since profoundly about your experience of your stroke.
    Simply, thank you for everything you share with all of us. x

    Liked by 4 people

  84. I absolutely love your new Strathendrick pattern in your own yarns. Just beautiful. As for the people who have made rude comments about you and your recovery, their selfishness and narrow mindedness should be ignored and not taken seriously. You are to be commended on your valiant and strong recovery. Your share so much of yourself, your craft, and your family with others. Its a pleasure to read just what you are dong next. Thanks for being the classy gal that you are.

    Liked by 3 people

  85. Kate, it makes me so sad to hear that people are being anything less than 100% supportive of you. You are an inspiration to so many people. I love your designs and think you are the perfect model for them. I was excited to learn that you’re short like me (I’m 4′ 11″)! Keep doing what you’re doing and know that you are appreciated by thousands of fans.

    Liked by 3 people

  86. Dear Kate,

    I love your blog, the beautiful designs you create, the thought you put into the values of what you do and helping us understand the context, the wonderful pictures that Tom takes of the magnificent scenery, the adorable Bruce and you in your designs. The way you wrote about your stroke and its aftermath were extremely helpful to me after my Dad had a very major stroke. I greatly admire the way you have rebuilt your life in a way that allows you to do as much of what you love as possible within the confines that your stroke has left you with. Although your height and body shape are very different from mine it is always a delight to see you wearing a new design to share with us and it is good for me to have to apply myself to thinking what modifications (if any) might be required to make something work on me. Human bodies have infinite diversity, your resilience and talents should only be celebrated, never derided or subjected to ignorant abuse. I am grateful for what you share and so sad that a few have responded so negatively.

    Liked by 4 people

  87. I, too, an very short and very skinny and it blows me away that people feel very free to comment on my size in ways that would never dream of with those who are larger. Do they not think it’s hurtful…? My body, like yours, has some bits that don’t work too well but its mine and it mostly does what it’s supposed to. Serves me pretty well, thanks very much, and I know Im skinny (and no, not anorexic, just genes) and don’t need you to remind me!

    Liked by 4 people

  88. I love the colourwork in this sweater, and the colours and the yarn – just beautiful! And I have always enjoyed the photos of you modelling your designs, with Tom’s beautiful photography and the Scottish nature. Just keep them coming!

    Liked by 3 people

  89. I am a long-time reader of your blog, but over the years I’ve mostly stopped reading comments in general, because of the occasional nastiness, which ruins it for me, so I don’t what has been said to upset you. Women on the internet are exposed to so much brutal criticism. I’m sorry to hear that you don’t enjoy modelling. I always thought you did. You’ve always styled your clothes so creatively, and Tom’s photography is beautiful. I feel inspired by your accomplishment despite (because of?) all you’ve been through.

    Liked by 2 people

  90. I love your patterns, I love the way you are showing the world your creations and giving the rest of the world the possibility to knit them too. A very big thank you to you and your team.
    There are people on this planet which are jealous and have to deal with envy and the only way they can deal with it is being nasty. From what I read on Instagram and here, there are far more people being nice and love your work as I do.. Looking forward to many more new patterns and you modelling them and of course the gorgeous pictures from Tom.
    Greetings from Switzerland, Christa

    Liked by 2 people

  91. Truly, what is “average”?
    I wonder, Kate, if the people making comments about “average” aren’t a little jealous of just how darn
    adorable you look modeling your designs.

    I like how tall people seem to be able to wear longer sweaters well but since I’m 5’2″, I think I look better in shorter lengths. Knowing that, I simply shorten the length of designs I see modeled on a person taller than myself. Maybe it’s all about understanding what looks best on ourselves rather than trying to fit everyone into a box.
    Being able to adjust a pattern to suit ourselves is what’s wonderful about knitting our own. It’s up to each of us to develop some self-awareness.
    Designers, like yourself, offer hours of your time, your creativity, and inspiration. And, oh my goodness, do you ever do that!
    You’ve given us hours of your creative efforts to offer a lovely contemporary design using traditional methods of
    color work. I have yet to learn fair isle but now I can’t wait to buy your pattern and try my hand at it. I love, love this new design. Much depends, as you mention, on shape, silhouette and proportion. Taller people also seem to be able to wear over-sized designs better than me but I’m able to wear some if they’re designed well.
    With what you’ve done with the sleeves and shaping of this garment, works. I feel sure I can wear this.
    Love the rich look of tapestry and the landscape that inspires you. All of it is interesting and inspiring. I thank you Kate for sharing that and your considerable talents with us!

    Liked by 2 people

  92. People…. my thoughts are- if you have nothing nice to say then…. we’ll say nothing!!
    Yes- you are smaller than many of us- but I knit your patterns taking this into account when I maybe see the length etc!! And many of your fitted jumpers just wouldn’t suit me (well put it this way- I wouldn’t do your patterns justice- haha!!)
    I have knitted many that are ‘me’ though and they’re beautiful well written and designed patterns- I’m also thrilled with your latest – it is most definitely me- and I canna wait to cast on!!
    Screw the moaners- as my mum says- little and good!!! (Both her sisters were rather taller than her!!)

    Xx

    Liked by 2 people

  93. I am so sad to read those cruel remarks ! I love love love your designs, and one of the things that catch my eyes the first time I saw them was you, modeling them :)
    You really have something special, the pictures through your husband’s eyes, the places, your designs, and you are an alchemy and I think many people can feel it !
    And how do you say in english ? In french we say “tu as vraiment de la classe”, so I think it is “you are so classy” ? or so class :D ? Anyway, you are an inspiration and not only about knitting <3

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  94. Please believe that you and your blog are very much appreciated. I for one love all your designs and the garments that you have created. And the photography that your husband posts is amazing. Some people do not understand that we are all have differences. Our body shapes, tastes, and values are all different. May you continue to get stronger and recover completely and that you continue in your beautiful work.

    Liked by 2 people

  95. Dearest Kate, I didn’t comment on the original post as I didn’t have time and reading ALL of these I was stunned at what I could only image was on the last post…I am Not reading them as I would be furious! All these positive comments made me tear up! You are a role model for us all. Most people would not have the inner strength to overcome what you have. Nil carborundum illegitimi is too true! Hugs from here.

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  96. Your recent sweater designs are so intriguing. What you are doing with shapes is unique and outstanding. Regarding the personal comments being made about you and your modeling, well, it’s your business and you can do what you like. Some people find it very, very easy to be rude and judgmental in the safety and anonymity of the cyber world. You just continue being you.

    Liked by 2 people

  97. Hi Kate,
    I am so sorry that you have had negative comments about your work. I have followed your journey with great interest and am so touched at your generosity in sharing your struggles and triumphs with us. I find the photos of you are full of dignity and passion. I so admire your strength. Please keep modeling your work. I love your sense of style and the thoughtfulness of your design process.

    Liked by 2 people

  98. My mother had polio after I was born. With physical therapy she was able to regain all muscle use except for her left shoulder and upper arm. She was never self-pitying and never used polio as an excuse to not get on with life. She had 10 more children after polio and I know her as a hard-working, get-it-done kind of woman. My hero. You remind me a lot of my mom.

    Liked by 2 people

  99. It seems that some people have a very narrow definition of what’s real. Very upsetting that you’re getting so many negative comments on your modeling. I felt the same way about the storm around Laine 3, with people trying to police photo’s that don’t fit their safe idea of reality.

    I really appreciate your photography and I think all designers that model their own designs are a valid & valuable addition to diversity in knitwear photography!

    Liked by 2 people

  100. Hi there, I am incensed that people could be so uneducated and narrow minded, and cruel to not appreciate what you are doing here and how fabulous your collective efforts are. Concentrate on how much inspiration and good you are doing for the vast majority of us who appreciate all that you do, and really love looking at how these designs work and are modelled. It does not take much to imagine how they might look on those of us who need lycra scaffolding! Sending you a hug x

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  101. Kate, I have followed your career since… 04-ish, when I picked up the needles onces again and finally figured out knitting. I am very slow at and sporadic at knitting due to RA. I have been in awe of your talents ~ Your designs, knitting, start an expanding yarn company/business combined with publishing your books, and the ability to model your own designs. Like why wouldn’t you ~ there is no one better! (No slight to Mel or anyone else you may chose is intended. But they are your designs and you have excellent taste!) You have been an inspiration! Thank you for all that you do and have done ~ and for all that Tom, Mel and Bruce do ~ too!
    Congratulations! And keep on going!!

    Liked by 3 people

  102. Thank you for this beautifully written post and for your courageous stance about what “normal” is. Those of us who craft and create proudly in spite of or perhaps because of our neurological issues really find inspiration in you. Your designs are beautiful and so are you.

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  103. Your story is inspiring and I agree with others that it is cruel to criticize your body. Body shaming is absolutely out of bounds.

    I have bought several of your patterns, kits, and books, but all have been accessories (hats, cowls, haps) never a sweater or anything that has to fit. This is because I cannot look at the model and tell whether the garment will fit me or flatter my shape, my skin tone, my hair color, etc. This a visual judgement. While it’s not fair to criticize Kate the person, it is fair to critique the model. There is such a thing as an average body size, it’s a math concept and you can buy an average size 8 (or small) sweater in any department store and you can you try it in on in a another setting and return it if doesn’t fit with the rest of your wardrobe.

    It’s different with hand knits. You invest a lot of money and time before you know if the sweater is right for you. The fit of garment will require attention to yarn weight, needles size, gauge and perhaps need special shaping of other adjustments. In choosing a pattern, many knitters do not consider these variables but buy the pattern and knit the sweater based on the model and how if looks on her and fits her.

    Setting is an important sales tool for any product: the luxury car on winding roads, the way we style our houses before putting them on the market. Your pictures are set in stunning surroundings and the photography is top notch. This speaks to many people who would like to live on West Highland Way. Kudos to you for capturing the magic of rural Scotland in your designs and marketing. I love it.

    However, I also love my bustling city and the people I see on the subway with black and brown, old and young faces, thin and not so thin bodies Some wear yoked sweaters, some wear ponchos, some wear shawls. It would help to better visual whether you designs will fit my body and my lifestyle if I could see them in my natural setting.

    A long winded way of saying I appreciate what you do, but as your business grows think diversity.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. While I appreciate what “Patricia” is saying, I would add if you don’t like the way Kate is showing her products, go somewhere else! There are lots of other designers out there and I’m sure you can find one you like.

      As for the rest of us, Kate, we love you, your designs and your gumption! Carry on……

      Liked by 1 person

  104. One of the things I most appreciate about the knitting community, is that it is well represented by “real” people of all shapes and sizes. I appreciate all the designers who model their own designs, just as I appreciate all the members of Ravelry posting pictures of themselves in their knitted garments. It’s one of the things that makes this community so welcoming and inclusive, especially compared to the world of “fashion”.

    Thanks for speaking up about this, and carry on doing your amazing work.

    Liked by 3 people

  105. Dear Kate,

    This seems like an appropriate moment to say something I’ve been meaning to say for years. I’ve been been following your work since 2008, which is right around when I finished school and entered the workforce myself. I’ve had my own neurological adventures since my early teenage years. When you had your stroke I was tremendously grateful you opted to continue inviting us into your life. You’re the only role model I have for striking a balance between sharing the impact disability has on each element of your life and decision making and leaving your professional accomplishments to shine all on their own without regard to the stroke and its aftermath. To me, you are a miracle. When faced with the quandary of whether or how much to share about my own disability and the way it informs my own work, I feel so, so lucky to be able to ask myself “What would Kate Davies do?” Being able to imagine you going through your own discernment makes my own discernment much easier. Thank you.

    Liked by 7 people

  106. Kate – someone once told me “…you are the best model for your work…” the truth is i knit most things for myself or others that would be like minded in taste. I find your work inspiring – you are a wonderful model – you represent something so real, so natural. Keep it up KDD is fantastic, you are beautiful! When we are comfortable with who we are and what we look like we can adapt patterns and designs for all kinds of body sizes, we are knitters – with a little creative thought we can do the math and make it our own, that’s the beautiful thing about knitting :)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Dear Kate,please know that you are perfect just the way God wants you to be at this time! Some miserable people want to hurt you so don’t let them -don’t read those ugly comments-just delete them!

      Liked by 3 people

  107. Kate, the picture of you modelling your Tortoise and Hare sweater brought tears to my eyes because I very well remember the first time I saw it. You had a rough beginning to 2010 and so did I, so it rather sticks in my memory. You look fabulous in this picture.

    As for the weird comments about your particular body, shame on the commenters. What makes them think average has anything to do with anything and who are they to define it? As a 70-year old white woman who is about 3/8″ shy of 5′, is skirting the line between skinny & not, is developing a bit of scoliosis, sporting two total knee replacements, and wearing hearing aids, I think you are fantastic! Average, schmaverage.

    With respect to your line, “…it is one which often motivates me with the confidence to stand before the camera, and to stand in front of you” in your post above, I can say that your standing in front of me gives me great inspiration and courage, and for that I more grateful than I can express. For example, the picture of your swants leap from your 12/31/13 post is one I often look at when I need a boost of confidence. Thank you for all that you do!

    Liked by 1 person

  108. I see 191 people have left comments before me, and after reading through a fair number of them I am relieved to see that every single comment was thoughtful, kind and supportive. Unfortunately we live in an age of meanness. That isn’t to say that unkind people outnumber the kind ones. Far from it. It is just that the unkind ones now have an anonymous, cowardly voice through their computers and devices, and that voice can be very loud, harsh and cruel. I hope the support you have received with this blog post more than make up for the negativity expressed by what is hopefully a very small minority within the crafting community. I love what you, and Tom, and Bruce (he can’t be left out!) do. I’ve said it once before, but it is worth saying again. Your designs, and writing, and Tom’s photography, and Bruce’s beautiful presence have brought much joy to me over the years, and have seen me through some very difficult times. Thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

  109. There is nothing wrong with modelling your wonderful designs. In fact I think you are the perfect model for them. They always look stunning and you always look stunning in them. Anyone who is complaining is wrong. Just dead wrong. I suggest you ignore the complaints knowing that those who are complaining are not at peace with their body type.

    Liked by 3 people

  110. Firstly, I love your new designs. It looks amazing and is something I’d definitely want to make.
    Secondly, I don’t know why people have to police everyone else and make comments on bodies. Frankly, anyone who follows your blog is sensitive and appreciative of you work – in all its manifestations. I am neither skinny (curvy) nor young (okay, youngish at 52), and guess what? My imagination is intact and I can imagine what your sweaters will look like on me (freakin’ gorgeous, if I may say so myself). I’m glad I didn’t see the original comments (although the temptation to scroll through looking for them is high) because I don’t know whether I could contain my ire.
    Keep on keepin’ on, Kate!

    Liked by 2 people

  111. Well said Kate. It is a particular bug bear of mine to see people comment on what a ‘real’ woman’s body should look like (or what functions it should be performing). I understand it often comes from a reaction against typically slim models but it helps no one to divide women or men up like this, and is particularly unhelpful when directed at someone working so hard and proudly modelling your own work. I am now significantly more curvy than I used to be but as a knitter I quite enjoy the process of looking at your designs and how theywork on your frame, reading your helpful pattern notes on fit and making my adjustment. Keep doing what you’re doing lass!

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  112. I have always loved that you model your own designs, the photography is stunning, your sense of style is impeccable and you are incredibly beautiful. The trolls can go back to hiding under their bridges.

    Liked by 2 people

  113. I am responding here as I have no desire to be part of continuing a conversation on social media that should never have existed in the first place. What I have to share comes from a friend of mine (who sadly died recently at the age of 58) who taught me a great deal about body image with a single comment, “I love my bathing suit!” Jo Anne was a large woman and I learned that loving her bathing suit had nothing to do with how she looked and everything to do with how it made her feel. I was curious and she went on to tell me that in her bathing suit she felt free and unencumbered. Jo Anne did not just tolerate her size, she accepted and respected herself in all ways, including her size.

    I am in my 60s, I have had 4 children, and I do not have the body I had in my 20s. Sometimes I have mourned the loss of that body. Jo Anne provided me with the starting point to begin to accept and celebrate the way I look and even more importantly, to pay attention to what makes me feel good, encased within this shape. Jo Anne was a knitter and she knit many beautiful things for herself and wore them with pleasure. And, she posed for photos. Thank you Jo Anne and thank you Kate Davies Designs.

    Liked by 2 people

  114. First, a big hug for you! You and your team are knitting royalty and have well earned our respect and loyalty! Bugger the deplorables who are attempting to bully you , probably out of their own failings and insecurities. My mother used to tell me that if someone was trying to intimidate me, just imagine them with no clothes on. Worked every time, and was good for a giggle or snicker each time! And another hug!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Dear Kate
      I Was absolutely transfixed by your modelling a few years ago when I accidently came across your blog. I taught myself to knit in the round and learnt colourway . Then when my hurting hands could not knit anymore inspired by your tenacity I went on to study (as a very mature student) Even though sadly I can’t knit anymore I still love your blog mainly because it is so beautiful and inspiring. My favourite part is your modelling as it is realistic and easy to relate to. I don’t think the people that are being unkind have any understanding of what your blog is about.

      Liked by 1 person

  115. I cannot imagine why anyone would criticize you for ANY reason – how ill-mannered this poor world has become ! You are a very beautiful woman, and your modelling is exceptional…such a complete delight ! Having recovered from a stroke, you are most certainly thankful to be ALIVE, be mobile and able to walk, talk, move your body as you wish…if that is not enough for “some people” then strike them off your list, their opinions matter not a whit !
    The rest of us admire and respect you and your brilliant talent, and adore your designs ! Your knitting designs are beyond gorgeous, and are so very inspiring. The style and shape of your designs may not suit everyone, so what ! We all need a challenge to our settled ideas of style and appearance – it is the “push” we need to go beyond our routine ways of knitting or creativity. THANK YOU for offering such rare examples of inspiration, set against the breathtaking backdrop of the wildness and purity of Scotland. BEST of the best to you and Tom and Bruce.

    WordPress.com / Gravatar.com credentials can be used.

    Liked by 2 people

  116. One of the downsides of being a blogger is that you open yourself up to weird and mean comments from a tiny portion of the population who want you to be as unhappy as they are. It’s hard not to take comments personally, even when said by strangers, when you are as open a person as you are. But rest assured that 99.99999% of your readers adore and admire you and everything you do, have been through, and stand for — myself included. More specifically, how anyone would negatively comment on your body or modeling is beyond comprehension. Your petite and attractive figure and your styling/modeling (and Tom’s photographs of you) are beyond gorgeous — so professional, colorful,artful, picturesque and down to earth, all at the same time. Please don’t change a thing or give the crazies out there one more thought.

    Liked by 3 people

  117. I have been following your blog for almost ten years now. When I first started knitting I searched high and low for a knitting blog that showed the utmost care for the product that they were producing and a love of the process of knitting. I found just that in your website. To have such a passion not only for creating but also researching various facets of the craft is what I love most about you.
    In January we tend to get a little cranky out here in Winterpeg (Winnipeg, Manitoba) and I have to say, receiving regular posts from you and seeing the lovely colours lifts my spirits to no end. My favourite thing to do is put on my Buchanan sweater (which I adapted to fit my 5’7″ slightly chesty frame) with its bright colours and see people smile and comment on how much they love it.
    Warm hugs from Canada.
    Christie
    P.S. I love the bold design of this latest work and tell Tom his photography is outstanding.

    Liked by 2 people

  118. I, too, will add my commendation, Kate. As a 5′ 10″, 200 lb. woman, I am much your opposite in body type, but I have been delighted with how well your designs fit and flatter me with no alterations to the pattern. Your designs and modelling of your own designs are pleasing to the eye and inspiring to my spirit. Thank you for sharing your joy and creativity with us!

    Liked by 3 people

  119. It infuriates me when people have the gall to criticize ANYONE else on their body shape. I think your photos are lovely and the fact that you proudly model your own designs and creations is inspiring, not to mention smart business planning. Who can afford to pay a model?!
    You have handled these complaints beautifully and professionally.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I much prefer looking at a real person than a model. Who better to show off your designs than you. (and who better to photo them than someone who really knows you.) I love your patterns and color choices. You continue to inspire me in many ways. I really love your sense of style and design. You have your own flair that motivates me to be myself and appreciate what I have.

      I am 5’3″, early 60s, and so pleased with myself because this is the first day in 2.5 months that I am not wearing a boot or brace and my shoes actually match. Yes they are high top hiking boots.

      Liked by 1 person

  120. I don’t usually comment, (and I wasn’t aware of what comments you’re responding to) but I want you to know that, as young woman, I LOVE that you model your designs yourself. There’s something so affirming about the message of it. “I made this thing, I wear this thing, I love this thing, it makes me happy. You can also make, wear, love this thing!” Your own pictures, in particular, are beautiful–not just because you are, and not just because your country is, and not just because your husband is a great photographer, but because they are of YOU. You’re intelligent and hardworking, your writing is beautiful, you’ve overcome great challenges, you’re creative, and an independent businesswoman. I’ve learned so much about history and technique from your blog. You are exactly the kind of woman I admire, and I WANT to see pictures of you modeling beautiful things. I WANT to see women I admire in beautiful landscapes showing off stuff they’ve made and being happy, because it signals to me that making and enjoying beautiful things belongs to everyone, not just to women whose actual profession is being attractive. I started reading sewing blogs in my late teens, while dealing with a disabling chronic illness, and seeing women who don’t fit the mold of what I’m supposed to want to be (tall, thin, white, pretty, never older than 30, able-bodied, confident, desired by many conventionally-attractive men) mattered! Seeing women who are more like the woman I want to be–a professional, skilled in making my own clothes, a good writer, confident, happy–helped me imagine multiple futures of what my life might be. I could make stuff and be happy about it in Scotland, or Nashville, or Australia, I could do it abled or disabled, I could do it married or unmarried, employed or unemployed. So, thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

  121. Your pictures are always wonderful and designs so beautiful! :) Great that you post pictures showing how you wear knits, and the idea of knitting is to make unique pieces that can be customised to any body! Too bad that some people are hung up on beauty ideals that hardly anyone can meet…

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    1. OK I don’t even know HOW to respond to a blog so hopefully this is going to the right place in cyberspace. BUT – that is how strongly I felt compelled to write a response!! Oh Kate – you look like a million bucks – seeing you modelling your knit ware is inspiring not only for the beauty of your designs but for how beautiful you look in everything you model. You are just dealing with good old fashioned jealousy masked as a claim of …. whatever the writers of these less than encouraging blogs claim to be the issue. You just keep doing the wonderful, inspiring and creative thing that you are doing!!! I love it!!!

      Liked by 3 people

  122. Your honesty, bravery, grace, designs, sense of style, fabulous use of color, etc., etc. are an inspiration for all of us. Please do continue to model your designs – they look lovely on you. One day I will cave in to my temptation to “attempt” to knit one of your designs. Thank you!

    Liked by 3 people

  123. Thank you for such beautiful pieces of art and design, and lovely words and photos. I look forward to receiving your emails with your blogs.

    Please keep doing what you’re doing, absolutely as you have been.

    Liked by 2 people

  124. You are awesome, Kate. I love your beautiful designs and your lovely, unique wardrobe, set against the stunning scenery of the Highlands ( a place I’m always happy to visit!). You have every right to model your creations and I think you do it very well. You have more fans than critics and I can’t imagine what is going on in these people’s lives that they have to be so hateful. Please keep doing what you have been doing. You are a beautiful, strong accomplished woman! Oh, and always nice to see some Bruce!!!

    Liked by 2 people

  125. I hope my comment the other day about wanting the sweater in the photo to be longer since perhaps your body would be cold, was not somehow misconstrued to contribute to bad feelings. I am disabled myself and was simply projecting that cold-body-of-mine which I was feeling might equal another-cold-body-in-winter where you are if not bundled to swaddling proportions.

    I am so sorry that there have been any unkind comments, and that people are so dense as to think that somehow they have a right to comment on one’s personal appearance in the sense of good or bad or other value judgment. I think it is excellent that you have done so well with your health concerns and with your knitting and creative efforts, and with the lovely blog that so many of us love. All best wishes to you and yours, and thank you for the wonderful blog.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I doubt that our comments on Kate’s designs and the personal revisions we are planning to make the design better fit ourselves bothers Kate. In fact, there have been many times that she will encourage or comment upon those revisions. Since the troll obviously couldn’t fault the quality and beauty of her knitwear, he/she had to descend to mean comments.

      Liked by 3 people

  126. Your posts and your modeling, your designs and their photography, your courage and extraordinary talent, your care in flawless pattern writing, your responses to queries, your phenomenal homeland are a daily inspiration for me! How perfectly horrific, any negative commentary about your suitability for modeling! Let those larger or smaller learn to pick a proper size or make the proper adjustments. In MY case, your height happens to enhance my ability to picture a garment on myself.
    Congratulations to you for all that you do so brilliantly!

    Liked by 3 people

  127. I don’t think you need sympathy. You just need to be reminded that there are – unfortunately – stupid people who can’t keep their mouths shut.
    That’s all.
    Keep doing what you do so brilliantly

    Liked by 2 people

  128. Firstly I would like to apologise that the body shaming/shape coversation seems to have eclipsed your lovely colour work pattern. I, personally not so fond of a really loose jumper like this only because it bugs me when under my normal sized coat but I can feel this as a poncho type affair which I am thinking about… how would you tackle the carried yarn on the reverse?

    One thing I love about your designs, your blog, yours and Tom’s photography is the narrative, and the slightly voyeristic insight that you give to your life.: Your struggles, your joys, the places you visit, your lovely home and environs, even your lovely dog. If you suddenly bought in some willowy stranger or some curvy professional model it would feel very intrusive to me. I love that you model your own designs and I adore your styling and local settings that you shoot in.

    Don’t change a goddamn thing, Kate.

    If people need instructions about how to adjust a pattern to perfectly fit their shape there are plenty of books, websites and courses they can do. If I remember rightly Ysolde did one a few years back when she was really getting into investigating shape.
    People should stop expecting everyone to bend to their needs and learn a little more about making things their own.

    Liked by 5 people

  129. Well, what can one add to all the lovely words of encouragement? Just know that more can’t wait to read your writing and hover over your designs and photos. I appreciate designers who model as it gives me a deeper sense of their styling which is what we love about designers The creative talent. Your and your husbands work is so stunning I never get enough. Carry on knowing your community supports you

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  130. Sheesh, Kate. Some people have got to be idiots. I love that you model your own work–because you are modeling YOUR OWN work. Sure, I’m a different size and shape and my current physical limitations are different–but who cares about that? (Obviously some people who don’t have any imagination, much less heart.) My sense of style is also different from yours: again, that doesn’t matter. I love watching your work grow and evolve, and I love that I see that happening in real time, with you and Tom making the photographs. Anybody who doesn’t like that? Well, I think you don’t need them, and neither do I. (Can you tell I’m grumpy with them?)

    Onward. Banners flying.

    Liked by 9 people

  131. Dear, dear Kate,
    I have just read your post, and most of the comments too. Everything I would have said has been said, and more eloquently than I would have done. It’s unbelievable that some people can be so cruel. (I wonder if any of them will write and apologise, having read the reaction your post has aroused?) Please remember all the positive reactions you get about your designs and about your sense of style, which many of us would like to emulate. Just keep doing exactly what you are doing!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Hello Kate…thanks for the lovely photographs of the area in which you live and your latest design both are so beautiful…
      Having been nursing for the past 30 odd years I still am surprised by the people who have to make such horrible comments. I have met all sorts and can say these people are a very small minority thankfully…..most people are caring and decent….I hope you can rise above all the small minded ones. You have an amazing talent and we love seeing and sharing it with you…love and hugs xx

      Liked by 4 people

  132. You are an amazing inspiration to so many people. I am constantly floored by your grace in dealing with such tough issues and your response to the negative internet clickers is no different. Thank you for being true to yourself and for sharing that with all of us who see you as incredible!

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  133. I’m so happy you model your own work in the place you live. I feel closer to you and your designs. I think my knits are extra special objects because I knitted them in the company of my friends and family and while thinking about the intended receiver. They are more than clothes. Seeing you in the photos and reading your words I think the same of your designs. They are more than patterns. I know it’s only on my end, but I like having that connection to you instead of knitting anonymous designs in craft-store-factory yarn (but of course, I do a lot of that too). The photos of your work do an excellent job of showing the styling, fit, and nifty details. Too often I find the designs I want to check out are photographed in moody lighting where I can’t see the detail or there are only two views of the garment. I’m sorry you have to deal with some riff-raf. I’m glad you posted this so we could all give you a boost.

    Liked by 3 people

  134. People never cease to amaze me… Sadly it seems The Golden Rule has gotten lost somewhere. Personally I appreciate that you do your own modeling and styling. I also appreciate how you describe fit an ease in your patterns. Lastly thank you for the latest designs. I am loving the A-line shaping as I do not have the slim figure that you have. Keep doing what you do.

    Liked by 4 people

  135. Oops, forgot to say how stunning this design is. I absolutely love it (and despite not being bodily perfect, I don’t care), it is definitely on my list to be knitted because I just love it.
    Thank you for this and the lovely photography from Tom.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kate,
      Regardless of our size, shape, skin colour, religion, knitting ability, disabilities, etc., etc., etc., we are all “real” in our own way. Shame in anyone who would make you feel badly. You are beautiful and adorable and while we may not all be as lovely and petite as you, it is only jealousy that makes those type of remarks.
      You go girl and keep modelling!!

      Liked by 2 people

  136. One of the truest things about Mother Nature is the diversity of the bodies within her body. I’m quite certain she views not one as more ‘real’ than others. The smallest insect a human naked eye can see is astonishingly complex and beautiful. Keep on keeping on, Kate. It’s obvious most of us are delighted with your particular brand of complexity and beauty. Many ((()))s and lots of blessings…

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  137. Dear Kate
    Like many here, I do not normally comment on posts but felt compelled to do so in this case. You are an amazing lady who has created a business that gives great joy to many people with your wonderful talents and have done this against great odds. It is so sad that faceless people feel able to make derogatory remarks – such sad, sad people. You should take courage in the millions of people who cannot wait for every post, like I do, and are enthralled by your talent and designs. Please continue to model your designs. As you know, many of us love to see how you style your designs and give us new ideas, along with Mel and Tom, on how to wear them and long may this last (Please include the gorgeous Bruce in this too).Take courage from all the replies here, long may you continue to thrive and cheer up my day ()as well as improving my knitting!0.
    Kindest regards
    Nicky

    Liked by 2 people

  138. Hi Kate, Just want to add my two cents in support of everything everyone here has said. You are an amazing woman. Incredible talent, taste, perseverence, determination and skill. I don’t knit much anymore (Carbeth has inspired me to return) but I never miss your blog. You look amazing in all of your designs, and the way you put everything together and the settings are amazing too. I found Cabbages and Roses because of you and am very grateful. I forward your blog to everyone I know who has had a stroke or is close to someone that has and can’t wait for your book so I can do the same with that. Please don’t let the jealousy and bitterness of a few nasty people get in your way.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Dear Kate, thanks. Thanks for your designs, your imagination, your industry and your thoughts. In a wirld drowning in air-brushed images of barely clad women, your courage to stand before the camera and model your knitwear is not only refreshing, courageous and wholesome but, most importantly, your right. Anyone who suggests differently is out of bounds. Period.

      Thanks for all you do for knitters, producers and sheep but what you do to raise the standards of beauty for all women no matter our ableness, age or size!

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Kate,
      I don’t expect you to look like me. I’m a middle aged, chesty woman, who would get all kinds of flack for modeling because I’m not a perfect size either.
      Let’s celebrate what you’ve overcome and the gifts you’ve given the world in your knitting patterns and inspiration.
      Shake off those jackasses and block them from your site!

      Charley Hannagan

      Liked by 2 people

  139. You are totally amazing and I cannot understand why idiots would even consider that you do not have a ‘real’ body. What is a ‘real’ body by the way? Blowed if I know. I love all of your designs. I know they won’t suit me because I am big boobed and fat, but that does not stop me from loving them and, admittedly, wishing I could wear them. But there are plenty of your designs that will suit me, so nuff said.

    As everyone else has said, ignore the cruel, unthinking remarks from jealous, sad people.

    Liked by 4 people

  140. Although many have voiced their support before me on this thread, I am compelled to jump on — bravo for your elegant response and bravo for Kate Davies Designs — your stories inspire, photos are magical – and quite frankly I love starting my day with a post from you and Tom and Bruce….you are a ‘gutsy’ woman as we say in the USA and that is a compliment of the highest order — please please please hold tight to what makes you such a joy to read and knit along with!

    Liked by 3 people

  141. Dear Kate,
    as my English isn’t as excellent as I wish, I usually don’t comment your posts, other people can do it much nicer than me. However, this time there’s something I would like to tell, two things, actually:
    1. I remember the reaction of my sister (who used to work as a model when she was younger) to your Book of Haps. She said, what a relief to see REAL WOMEN at photos of fashion. It’s exactly what I think. I used to buy some knitting magazines like Verena before I found you and (thank to you) ravelry. And honestly, I absolutely prefer you and all other designers who personally present their designs, it’s so much more impressive and, yes, real, than the photos of professional models in those magazines!
    2. I have always admired you for sharing so much of your life with us and I’m grateful for it, indeed. I love you designs as well as your phots of them – it’s because of you that I have started to knit again after a long break, I do look at your blog every single day to find out if there’s something new, I dare say it’s a part of my life now. I’m very happy about it and just want to say: thank you for that!
    Olga

    Liked by 2 people

  142. Shame on those trolls, who should just STFU. You’ve got enormous talent and courage and more class in your pinky finger than they could ever hope for. And if they had enough knitting skills, they could adapt your fabulous designs to suit their own [fill in the blank] bodies. None of us will ever be perfect, and we can’t lose sight of that. Don’t let the bastards get you down.

    Liked by 3 people

  143. I avoid reading comments in most places because of the unexpected hostility. I find it especially sad that knitters who in the main are kind and gentle people have harsh people in their midst. Please carry on as you are with Tom’s terrific photos and the occasional help from Bruce and Mel.

    Liked by 1 person

  144. “When a true genius appears, you can know him by this sign, that all the dunces are in confederacy against him.” So said Jonathan Swift. A modern REALism says JEALOUS MUCH?
    Keep Kate and Carry On.
    ♡♡♡

    Liked by 4 people

  145. In this on-line world we live in, the magnification of how rude, hurtful, bullying and cruel some people can be, seems to grow daily, but it never ceases to astonish me. I rarely take a moment to comment on anything but it incenses me that some would be so hurtful. It doesn’t matter how accomplished and talented you are, it has to hurt. Your designs are so delightful and stunning and whenever I see your photos of you modelling your designs I ‘always’ think that you look beautiful. If I did not think that, as a civilized human being who understands that other people have feelings, I would keep that opinion to myself. The thing that brings me hope is that upon skimming the other comments, there seems to be nothing but supportive, kind comments. I can’t help but think of how hard it is for young people who face the on-line shaming and bullying that goes on. You bring joy and happiness to many of us and for the few that have to criticize and condemn I hope you will remove their opinions from your thoughts and heart. Some people are just cruel but I find the world (at least in the handicrafts) to be supportive and thoughtful.

    Liked by 1 person

  146. I’ve never left a comment on a blog before, and in fact I’m new to your designs. Just cast on Carbeth this week. But I wanted to say how much I love that you model your designs. It shows that you design what you love. Selfishly, I also appreciate your modeling because I’m petite too and not to say that your designs are specifically for petite people, but I love seeing what they look like on somebody like me! Can’t wait to finish my carbeth and start another one of your patterns.

    Liked by 1 person

  147. Dear Kate,
    I’ve never commented on your posts before, just silently enjoyed the beauty of your designs and the landscape and the pictures in general (along with your writing, naturally :-)). I thought about this post, and I am still not sure what “less real” is supposed to mean. For you, your body is something very real and personal – for me it is an integral part of very beautiful pictures that have a decidedly soothing quality to them (which might be mainly the colors and the landscape, though), i.e. it is part of something very close to a piece of art. In this way it is true, it is not really “real” for me – but it’s not supposed to be, either. Aggressive criticism (or any criticizm at all, for that matter), however, is way out of line and doesn’t make any sense at all. Can you try to ignore it and focus on the many people you are an inspiration for? Please? I, for instance, have the greatest respect for your strength and courage, and I admire your sense of style.
    Very kind regards!

    Liked by 1 person

  148. I am sorry you have had to endure such abuse. It is an ugly condition of our faceless social media. It disturbs me greatly that the need to be heard overshadows the desire for decency. I, for one, have always enjoyed seeing you model. It represents courage to me.

    Liked by 2 people

  149. As a designer who models her own designs I cannot say how much I admire your work. Your thoughtful styling and Tom’s skillful photography make your garments a pleasure to view. It is absolutely wrong, in my view, ever to comment on someone else’s body. I also feel that it is highly desirable for designers to model their own work. I design for myself and my family first, and because my daughter and I are very petite (5’2″ and 5’1″), I too have received comments from time to time that my photos don’t help knitters see what my sweaters might look like on “real” bodies. As to that, all bodies are “real”. This applies to aging bodies, like mine, too. I wrote on your Instagram page this morning that I published my early designs with Twist Collective. The editor, Kate Gilbert, chose not to use professional models and instead relied on imaginative and beautiful photography to sell the designs. I love what she did with my “Sandridge” sweater. And just look at her photos of Marnie MacLean’s “Foxcroft” to see how beautiful an elderly woman can be. Carry on, because I adore what you are doing.

    Liked by 2 people

  150. As others have said, those who are jealous always jump to personal attacks because they have nothing else. I can’t imagine that anyone who has followed you for years could possible say anything mean about or to you, simply because of your appearance. You are lovely just how you are. I would hope that you do not take some random comment about how such-and-such design wouldn’t work for them on their body as a personal attack on you. Fashion is a very subjective thing.

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  151. Dear Kate,

    I’m APPALLED at the inane insensitivity of the person(s) who sent those silly complaints. “Inane” because anyone who reads your blog knows you are a small business without money to hire models, and because models are typically very tall and very skinny – hardly “average”. “Insensitive “ because just plain cruel, considering all you’ve been through.

    What do these people want – designs modeled by every possible size and shape? Well, let them whine to Rowan and Cascade and Vogue. Those companies will still show clothing on – yep- the tall, tall 18 year old skeletons they use.

    When I look at a pattern (and for the record, I am your height, but heavier, and am old enough to be your very proud Mum), I can visualize how it would look on me and if it’s a style I like. Too bad these attackers are incapable or too lazy to do that themselves.

    Please don’t let these fools upset you.

    Liked by 3 people

  152. How utterly stupid. You are you & your designs are stunning. Your shape is as real as anyone else’s out there, so I’m curious as to what your troll’s version of “a real figure” is. Carry on & ignore the idiot. I’ll take this opportunity to remind that person that (s)he is welcome to stop following your blog & designs if (s)he’s unhappy with what (s)he sees here. Ugh, I’m so annoyed that you’re even having to post something like this.

    Liked by 3 people

  153. I can’t believe anyone would be so rude! Well, I suppose I can… It’s more inclusive to show designs on your individual self than a model who can still represent one body shape, whatever that is. Obviously some garment shapes ‘flatter’ some shapes more than others, but it’s for the knitter to choose what to knit, not to criticise anyone who isn’t the same shape as them!
    I love your designs, and I think you model them very well, and hope to see lots more!

    Liked by 3 people

  154. Love your designs and your photos. Please don’t let those with negative voices get the upper hand. Your journey is inspiring, thank you for sharing your world.

    Liked by 1 person

  155. Hello Kate,
    I’ve never commented on your blog before but have been following you for quite some time, and thought I’d let you know (along with, as it seems, so many many more who think so highly of you!). I think your work, your writing, photos and bits of your life is inspiring and beautiful. I appreciated reading about your struggles during a period when my health was bad and I had months of not being able to walk, not finding help from doctors or other health care professionals, and making things was where I found some joy and beauty in my life. Your blog was a part of that inspiration, and your beautiful photos, with your particular body, and your great smile, brought some lightness to my day. So thank you, and I hope you continue for a long time.

    Liked by 2 people

  156. Thank you for this strong and honest post. I think you are beautiful in every way, courageous and smart and talented too. Just ignore the people that would denigrate you- how awful of them! Carry on with your amazing designs, knitting, research and writing and know that you touch so many people with your abilities and bravery!

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  157. There’s a nice Strathendrick thread over on Ravelry. Many of the comments run along the lines of “I don’t know if this would look good on me.” What I Love are the replies: “My body is shaped like X; this style is flattering.”

    I concluded long ago that oversized was a bad look for me, but it’s a testament to my respect for your design skill and my respect for those kind, lovely knitters on the Strathendrick thread that I’m going to invest the time in this pattern.

    I’ve always loved seeing you (and Tom and Mel) model your designs. They are clearly designed to be worn by real people, and I value that.

    Liked by 3 people

  158. kate, i weep as i read this news about the negative comments that you’ve been receiving. you. your brilliance. your eloquence in word and in deed. your place in this world, and the way that you synchronize your unique vision with that place and share it with us so that all of us may truly FEEL your expressions. in my heart and in my mind, you are one of my greatest inspirations. your presence in my mailbox. on my instagram. here, on your blog. on my body in the form of your designs and your yarn. these are some of the most beautiful pieces of my life! so much love to you, and tom, and bruce. xo

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  159. Ignore the naysayers! Stand strong in the wake of all the people who have commented on how much they love and support you. There isn’t a thing to criticize – the designs, the modelling, the photography, the landscape, and both Tom and Bruce. Keep on doing what you are doing because it’s all working beautifully. Love you and your knitwear forever.
    Cheers and white wine, Hazel.

    Liked by 4 people

  160. I do not like hearing that you have been criticized for your body. I know you aremore of a public figure nowadays, but I not think you have to be “representative” of anyone other than yourself. Also, this body is part of the rest of you so I can see that any comments directed against your looks are totally simply rude. I have been reading your blog for ages, since the Owls pattern and I have enjoyed getting to know you through your writing, designs and pictures. You have never been one to share just pictures if your physical self. I don’t look like you, but I do think you are representative and real. How is this? Anyways, thanks for sharing! This is really thought provoking.

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  161. See, we love you. Don‘t change a thing! Don‘t let those comments hurt you <3
    Most people probably envy you because they are fat like me and aren‘t empathetic enough to know how their comments may be percieved.

    Liked by 1 person

  162. Kate, you’re cute as a button. I love your poses–so obviously joyful at being out in these gorgeous places! It makes my day to see you and Bruce frolicking in beautiful knitwear. I do knit, so I love that part, too, but it is your honesty that keeps me reading. As someone who suffers permanent effects from chemotherapy (I was 37 when my health crisis hit, too), I feel particularly grateful for your ability to mention your disability but not let it control you.

    As for modeling, I’ll admit that despite always enjoying the pictures, it has occurred to me to wish I could know what this sweater or that would really look like on my frame (taller and broad-hipped). But because I’m not as thoughtless as those who’ve criticized rudely, I thought a bit and concluded that it makes sense for obvious reasons (time, practicality, money, and perhaps a little well-deserved pride in your beautiful work!)

    So know that we do, indeed, have your back, we love your photos, and we with our hips and muffin-tops are here for you if you ever decide on a more multi-bodied approach. (Katie Jones is my new hero!)

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  163. Kate, I’ve been following your blog since before your stroke, and it’s been particularly important to me following my own sudden disability and onset of chronic illness 6 years ago. I’m about your age, I was an early career academic, and I was suddenly in a body that felt so alien to me. You gave me hope and an example to study. Especially now, post-academia and trying to understand how to carve out a new career that better serves my body and mind. Your literal *visibility* here has meant a lot to me, and I hope a few haters trolling your so-very-real body don’t change how you present yourself here.

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  164. May the voices of love for your persistence, your sharing of your brilliantly beautiful landscape, and yes, your openness about sharing your struggles in regaining a semblance of life that includes your art and moving. I hope that you ignore those voices – push them right out of your mind. They do not speak for all. A good thing to remember is that we are all uniquely and wonderfully made.

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  165. Well said, Kate. Your eloquent and dignified response was is a far cry from what my two word, not-so-nice response would have been. Fat shaming is frowned upon, so should thin shaming. It goes both ways. I am a loyal fan of you and your knitting, no matter what your size!

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  166. The fact that anyone would criticize an independent knitting pattern designer of modelling her own work shows a surprising lack of knowledge about this industry (we all do it because it’s convenient and cost-effective and I also always feel uncomfortable doing it). But it’s the smallmindedness of such comments that sadden me. Your designs and your modelling are not only an homage to your talents, but they’re a testament to your courage and resilience. Keep on keeping on, Kate. You’re incredible.

    Liked by 3 people

  167. How awful that there are those who can hide in the anonymity of the web and make such comments. I love that you model your designs. Your pride, love,inspiration and hard work shine through Tom’s beautiful photos. My daughter has always faced the ‘why do you look so weird’ comments. She had seizures at birth and her body is a wee bit ‘wonky’ and ‘a little skinny’ (as you put it). We celebrate it as quirky and one of a kind. Your courage is inspiring and your designs beautiful, timeless, and universal.

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  168. I’m usually only reading, but was so moved by this post, that I wanted to respond and give you my support. I enjoy your designs, your writing and the beautiful photography of Scotland. It makes me sad and angry to read that people write this kind of comments. I love that you model your own designs, my impression is that you design with your heart and are highly inspired by what you see and feel and it is only right so see you modelling your own creations. It takes part of showing us, your readers, your point of view on your designs.

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  169. Well said, Kate. I’d admire your eloquent, and dignified response to the negative comments. I would have responded in a not so nice, two word response. But I’m a bit on the brassy side. Fat shaming is frowned upon, so should thin shaming be.

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  170. Oh Kate, I have followed for a long time because of your personal touch in everything you do. I love your designs , seeing you in your favourite places, your tenacity in troubled times . Thank you for sharing so much and please don’t let those hurtful posts change the person so many knitters love x

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  171. I love seeing you model your designs! It’s a strange thing when there’s been so much focus on the need to represent more body types in the media that some of us are still being told that we’re not ‘real women’. I’ve had this before because I’m quite slim, apparently this means I’m not ‘real’ either. There have been a number of hurtful comments right to my face but because they’re based on me being skinny they’re seen as ‘just a joke’ or, in an even weirder way, complimentary!
    Anyway, I particularly love Strathendrick, it’s not a shape I’d usually have considered for myself but seeing how you wear it in these photos I know it’s going to find it’s way onto my project list! x

    Liked by 3 people

  172. Thank you Kate for your wise words as well as your wonderful work. You mention having the courage not just to stand in front of the cameras but in front of ourselves, and I suspect that is part of the reason behind the comments. When society and culture condition us to think that certain shapes, sizes and appearances are better than others and we struggle to accept ourselves as we are, it is easy to feel threatened or unsettled and to respond in odd/rude ways. I am a very different size and shape to you and have had years of being unhappy about what I saw in the mirror. However I have finally come to be more accepting of myself and to delight in who I am and it is incredibly freeing. I have every intention of knitting this stunning pattern and wearing it with great joy, just as I fully intend on modelling all my own designs and helping others see that we are all ok as we are.

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  173. Kate,
    I don’t knit! My dear friend (who is a wonderful knitter) shared your glorious website with me. I love to look at the fotos, read about what you are doing and your life, and of course Bruce! All I can say is YOU are the reason I read religiously!
    You are the creator so who better to wear your own clothes??? Are people really that stupid to think that way, and even worse email you? Ughhhhhhh.
    Jean

    Liked by 2 people

  174. I wonder what ‘real’ is in the mind of these people.
    It takes up a lot of courage to model, and I can only guess it takes even more to do so when you’re disabled.
    It’s good you mention you got these remarks, but be sure there is a very large group of knitters who got your back.

    Liked by 3 people

  175. I’ve been following you since before your stroke, and you are still one of my favorite bloggers. Anyone criticizing your body is simply totally insensitive, miserable, or jealous. Thank you for sharing so much of yourself, your incredible talent, and your gorgeous surroundings with us. <3

    Liked by 3 people

  176. Dear Kate
    I was so saddened Reading you blog today. You just can not beat narrowmindednes, can you?
    I, for one, enjoy reading your blog, looking at the beautyful pictures of the garments you make, which so suits the landscapes, and also you. Never have I thought anything “bad” about you as model. Of course you use yourself as model, it’s the nearest thing to do. And you do look so pretty and often a little shy, as if you don’t really like being photographed.
    I hope you keep on doing what you are so good at: designing, writing and inspiring lots of people.
    All the best from Denmark

    Liked by 3 people

  177. It’s quite shocking to me that you’ve been receiving these comments, especially when the knitting community is usually so supportive. I, for one, am very happy that I can see you modelling your own designs, as I actually think it makes them more real (and I quite enjoy your styling and the settings you choose). And I loved both Carbeth and this latest design, so thank you so much for sharing them with us !

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  178. What the -!? are people thinking? There is nothing wrong and much right with you modeling your own designs. Are you a different shape from me? Absolutely. Do I look at your pictures and designs and wonder how they would look on my shape? Yes I do. Do I think there is anything wrong with that? OF COURSE NOT! Why would I expect everyone to only use me as a model? When I design sweaters I can model them.

    For heavens sake, what ails people?

    You should stand proudly in those gorgeous clothes, in that stunning landscape and pose like mad for that talented photographer you married. You have accomplished amazing things. Don’t let the trolls take anything away from you.

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  179. Ah, I love that you’ve made what you do into your own thing. I love your knitwear designs as a standalone thing, but what I love even more is that you merge it with your surroundings and essays and photographs. I like that you, as a ‘model’, are an integral part of that and I really like the rest of your styling too. There will always be someone somewhere who comments inconsiderately.

    Liked by 3 people

  180. I think you are gorgeous and brave and brilliant and you inspire me every day. Seeing you model your hand knit designs in the places that gave them their form and substance makes them come alive. Anyone who complains does not deserve them.

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  181. Dear Kate

    You are damned if you do and damned if you don’t. It is a sad reflection on our society that people see others overcoming obstacles and becoming successful. And they cannot wait to put them down. I am afraid I can only explain such behaviour as a result of jealousy and insecurity in these people.

    In trying to be a good, kind and decent person I would say that I am sorry for such people – who have nothing better to do than to be unnecessarily unkind. (Luckily, you didn’t get me on an off day. You would have had to delete the post).

    Continue doing what you are doing. Your success is down to hard work, perseverance and finding a few talents you may not have known you had. (Modelling being one of them). Your business is going from strength to strength and you modify, change and develop to keep it interesting and fresh.

    Best wishes for your future and continued success.

    Liked by 3 people

  182. Good grief! I’m so grateful for you and others like you and I appreciate your willingness to share yourself and your loved, thank you! You keep my world fascinating and open, thank you.

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  183. Knowing that people would criticize you, just makes me angry. This digital world has created an atmosphere that spawns hurtful comments without informed responsibility.

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  184. I know it’s easy to say “Take no notice” but really, that’s the only logical thing to do-ignore comments that come from mean spirited people. There are many generous and complimentary comments on your blog that should delight you. I love getting your messages in my inbox and whilst everything you design may not be to my taste, I generally love all that you do. Keep trucking, as the roadies say!

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  185. Dearest Kate, thank you for being you. I’ve said this many times before in all sincerity. You are truly an inspiration to me and many, many others. I have most of your patterns and books and always look forward to the next sweater and Club, photos, and commentary. I admire your tenacity and expect to see you modeling all your new sweaters in the future!!

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  186. Kate, just adding my support. I think you are amazing. I love reading your blog and seeing your designs, and seeing you model them!! I love keeping up with Bruce and Tom ( not necessarily in that order:) ). You are an inspiration to us all. Some people are jerks- hard to believe that a knitter can be a jerk, but there you go, an outlier!!! Keep modeling, love the newest design, if I wasn’t in FL, USA, I would be knitting it asap!

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  187. I hope you aren’t too bother by the comments on you being not a proper ‘representative’ model. I’ve seen similar comments criticising the use of a ‘too skinny’ model directed an another small, independent company. It’s great that people are questioning the prevalence of fashion/lifestyle images that only show a narrow range of people, but they must have forgotten that to be representative, you have to have a really wide range of people. Differently abled, different races, different sizes – that would be a lot of models to find, and a lot of test knits to photograph! And I’m sure if you chose to use an ‘average’ model, as in the UK average of a size 16, somebody would speak up to say that you were promoting an unhealthy body…

    Liked by 1 person

  188. Like many of the other comments above, I feel compelled to add my voice of support to you Kate. Your work is an inspiration to me and I feel incensed that you could have received such negativity, which is, quite frankly, rude. I admire most the flattering ways you present your designs in the best light possible, while showing a strong link to your surroundings. Your work makes my heart sing.

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  189. I, too, just want to voice my support. You are my favourite knit designer, and I look forward everyday to all your emails, posts, and photos. They serve as a daily source of inspiration to me, not only in my knitting, but in my life. I love the beauty you share with us, whether it be a new pattern, or yarn, or the beautiful countryside you live in. No person should make another feel ashamed or confused about themselves . And you are real, but I know you know that. I think that is why I enjoy all your posts and writing so much…they are full of real life and the genuine undertaking of what that life has put in your path. You are beautiful and so is your work. I look forward to your next project. Hugs and support.
    Emily

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  190. Kate,
    I do not knit, but I follow your blog and designs for the beautiful photography and craftsmanship. Modeling your own designs is as authentic and real as it gets. I love that you are able to do what you do (knitting and walking those hillsides) post stroke, I am a physical therapist as well, and I think one can really not underestimate the impact of any disability on a person’s life and outlook. Thank you for sharing all that you do with us!

    Liked by 3 people

  191. When you model, I expect to see you and that’s it – the fact that your modeling is ccompanied by beautiful knitwear, gorgeous photography and lovely words is a bonus :-) If you had a bunch of models hanging out with you and knitwear knit to size for each of them… it would be interesting to see how your knitwear looks on different body sizes and types – oh wait – I can see that on Ravelry! Thanks for keeping on doing what you do Kate – I for one, as a very differently shaped and sized person than you, love it!

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  192. Hi Kate, I’ve enjoyed your modeling and think you look just grand in your lovely jumpers. My body is not landmarked by things like waist and hips and I’ve learned how to look at designs and understand ways to modify them for my shape. To me your outline is a classic feminine one that reflects how most garments are designed in the indie world. Can’t understand what people are complaining about unless it’s the lack of very tall, very thin professional models or plus-sized models or ??. For me your modeling is an integral part of your designs and just wish my shape were as nice. btw don’t think anyone would know looking at the photos that you have had health issues and your recovery is remarkable!

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  193. Dear Kate, I’m sorry that this happened. I love seeing you in your designs, and I love knitting your designs. Remember the Oa, I loved knitting it and I love wearing it. When I was in the V&A in October (my first time I was allowed to be more than 500 km away from the hospital in 8 years) I got recognized by a fellow knitter because I was wearing it, and because you wrote about mine on your blog. I sure have a different body from yours, but what the heck has weird something to do with that??? Thank you for telling us, so we can all boost your and our own confidence about our body and our body shape. Lots of love to you, Josh

    Liked by 4 people

  194. Kate,

    Lovely post that gives an insight into your working mind. I, for one, have one of those “less real” bodies, rather thin, but not at all “runway worthy” if high fashion standards apply. I find it helpful to see the jumpers that you design because I know I could wear them in similar fashion. On the other hand, I acknowledge that female forms are wildly varied and models are just that – models. Carry on, Kate.

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  195. Please please ignore those negative comments a great deal of unfortunate jealousy t think. I love all your designs kate followed you from the start thankyou from the bottom of my heart for your wonderful inspirational designs I feel so cross I’m going to order my yarn for your latest beauty later today we love you kate and Tom and beautiful Bruce sending the warmest of thoughts

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  196. Thanks for the thoughtful and thought provoking post.
    Just to say i have always admired the styling of your photos. I recognise the time and thought that goes into it and appreciate your talent in the area… as well as your ability to model even if you don’t like doing it.

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  197. I am astonished that people would comment on your modeling of your incredibly beautiful designs at all. It just would never have occurred to me. I love the photographs of your designs, I see nothing at all wrong in your modeling them. I’m so sorry that anyone would be at all disparaging about how you present your beautiful work. You are a beautiful, gifted, and courageous human, who clearly also is packed with incredible strength, and I’m so grateful that you share your talent with all of us. Don’t ever stop. Much love your way.

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  198. A beautiful design and a troubling bit of information. I had not realised that you were getting that kind of feedback. I had noticed that these last few designs have the most positive ease of any of your pullover designs. It felt like a bit of a new direction or exploration for you but not an unwelcome one. You have always modeled your own work. This seems a strange and new kind of criticism and it leaves me wondering why. Could people be reacting because they expect you to design a certain way and then they do not like the direction you have taken in this club so far? Could it be because this collection is a series of surprises and some people are uncomfortable with those surprises if they had another thing in mind? If that is the case they need to get some perspective. That is the gift and right of any designer – to go in the direction their muse takes them, make what resonates with them at that time, and express their vision. You are not here to design for our approval. Strathendrick did not strike me as a design I totally want to wear and cast on right away. So what? I can still call it beautiful, appreciate the thought and craft and decisions that went into it, and be affected by its aesthetics.

    There is absolutely a valid concern that various types of person see representation in media, particularly those who have not had fair representation before. You however are not “all media” and you are not individually responsible for representing all people in your work. If you were the head of a much larger yarn line or design group, that would be a different story. But you are the sole designer, it’s called Kate Davies Designs for heaven’s sake! Part of what makes your work powerful is its very uniqueness and the authenticity you bring by being exactly yourself, with your eye in your environment. That is one of the beautiful things about a very small business.

    I have a good number of your books and love reading your blog. Some of your designs are exactly what I want in my closet, some are never going to be my style without some serious alteration. So what? I don’t think it is the job of a designer to make every design pleasing or suitable to all people. That is impossible to do in any “real” way. What I want to see is you! Not that you have to model everything although I think it is great that you often do. By seeing you, I mean I want to see your style, your vision and your ideas. That is a vulnerable thing to do and I applaud your repeated willingness to be open and honest and true with us in the joyful things and the painful things and the concerning things all together. Thank you for your courage, your thoughtfulness, your honesty and your style.

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  199. Dear Kate. I think that you are an absolutely incredible woman. Anyone who can do everything that that you do, and have done previously, is nothing but truly remarkable. I am always amazed and delighted by your posts, and I rhank you, and Tom, for every single word, and ever single photograph.
    Take no notice at all of those who would criticise. They are only interested in themselves. We fans are interested in you! With best wishes.

    Liked by 3 people

  200. Only want to add my voice of support for your beautiful work, stunning photos and thoughtful words. It does seem to me that your honesty about your stroke is an act of bravery. Keep up the wonderful work!

    Liked by 3 people

  201. I cannot believe that people have posted comments about your body shape etc in the photographs you use to display your work.

    My first thoughts whenever I see your posts are always wow. Firstly for the knitting, secondly for the photography, thirdly for the scenery (loch Lomond is one of my favourite places and I only live about an hour away) and fourthly because I like your individual style. I also admire the fact that both you and Mel model your work for your books and patterns as I feels it makes it feel more real. You are a small, family run company and I like that about you. Please try to ignore their horrible, small minded remarks. Keep producing your wonderful patterns as so many of us love seeing them and your photos.

    Liked by 4 people

  202. It’s probably already been said, I’m at work
    and really should be working so haven’t
    gone through all the comments but how real are
    images on clothing websites of 5ft10
    models wearing a size 8. I love your modelling
    images, I love your sense of style and think
    you look amazing and in resent images I
    think you look like you’ve gained another
    part of your pre stroke self back.
    Unfortunately there seems to be some really
    thoughtless people out there.

    Anyone reading this, apologies it hasn’t come out the way it was typed!

    Liked by 3 people

  203. Hi Kate, I was moved by your posts today and deeply saddened by the criticisms you have been subject to. Peronally I admire what you do and love to read your words, especially when they express your deep love and connection with your environment. Todays post touched me deeply because I understand total involvement with landscape and history. For me it is more easily recognised than articulated, but your passion is instantly flagged up and acknowledged. Thank you.
    When life is complicated by illness or trauma or abuse, it it hard to untangle the complexity. Physical, emotional, spiritual reactions at times are hard to untangle. This is where the tools of humanity, compassion and strength come into play. We all just have to try, one step at a time.
    You have made your journey largely public but never self indulgent. You never set yourself up, but have always remained human and one step at a time your self-healing spirit comes through. We all have difficulties and frustrations in life, and you have worked with these things to allow them to shape you but not define you. This is a great example. Whats to criticise? I don’t understand.
    For what its worth Kate, I admire your walk and your spirit and find strength in your posts. I am sorry you have been exposed to unkindness, it is hurtful. Please continue to take stength from yourself and your life and surroundings with the grace and humility that you hold with value and care.

    Liked by 3 people

  204. It’s probably already been said, I’m at work
    and really should be working so haven’t
    gone through all the comments but how real are
    images on clothing websites of 5ft10
    models wearing a size 8. I love your modelling
    images, I love your sense of style and think
    you look amazing and in resent images I
    think you look like you’ve gained another
    part of your pre stroke self back.
    Unfortunately there seems to be somebreally
    thoughtless people out there.

    Liked by 1 person

  205. It’s probably already been said, I’m at work
    and really should be working so haven’t
    gone through all the comments but how real are
    are images on clothing websites of 5ft10
    models wearing a size 8. I love your modelling
    images, I love your sense of style and think
    you look amazing and in resent images I
    think you look like you’ve gained another
    part of your pre stroke self back.
    Unfortunately there seems to really
    thoughtless people out there.

    Liked by 1 person

  206. Dear Kate. I love your creations, but I am not good enough yet to knit it. But I always read your posts and admire your work (and that of the photographer). There are so many strange people out in the net. And obviously some of them also knit – or at least read posts about knitting. Just ignore them. So many people love your work and admire you for your fight. You are not only a great model you are a role model.
    Proof? Foot voting. The events with you on the EYF were sold out in no time.

    Liked by 3 people

  207. What an extraordinary thing for one person to say, let alone several – what on earth were they thinking (or not as the case may be). I love that you model your designs, even if it’s not your favourite thing to do, because it’s the completion of the cycle, from inspiration to reality (because no one ever imagines a sweater design as it would look folded up in your bottom drawer) and that in itself is inspiring. Every person (not just women) when they see a garment hanging in a shop or on a mannequin has to think “how would that look on me? would that work for me?” even if they do it subconsciously (I’m 6’0″ and plump so it’s very conscious for me!) so why should knitwear be any different?

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  208. Thank you for this and I hope the process of writing and the great comments above was positive. As an obviously intelligent person you ‘know’ the negative comments come from complex places. As an older and and slim person who makes a living standing up in front of 18-21 year olds on an endless cycle I pride myself on my refusal to conform and yet I know I can carry off whatever I wear due to context and assumed privilege of whiteness, not seen disability and intellect. However instead of relying on this I talk to my cycle about it – my assumption is that one day they will remember it and smile. I am linking your post for them (not the least because I am asking them to learn to knit]. Please carry on documenting the success of your vision with Tom .

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  209. Ignore the negative comments and celebrate the beauty which you and your husband have created. I enjoy your blog and I am in awe of your creative designs. As I fellow stroke survivor, I commend you on your recovery and aspire to be as positive as you are.

    Please continue to share your story and your lovely patterns.

    Liked by 3 people

  210. Everyone has a right to their opinion. But that said: not every opinion needs to be made public. People seem to tend to forget that there are other people with feelings behind that screen so conveniently screening (ha :-)) them from the world outside.
    Everyone has a body and every body is real. My body differs a lot from yours, Kate. But I know what I like on my body and can decide for myself if I want to wear a design. Of course, that would be easier if I saw a design on a body a lot more like mine. But that is the magic of Ravelry and the online community in general: I can see many different versions of a design (maybe I need to wait a while) on as many different bodies.
    As someone else already said: You modelling your designs yourself is your brand and strengthens that brand. I love seeing you in the lovely places you can access for your walks and your work. I am full of admiration for your recovery after your stroke!
    It would be different if you would hire models for your photos: I would really be angry if you would choose only one model with a body type representing e.g. what the public sees as “normal”. That would be exclusive and discriminating.
    But as you model your designs yourself, I see no problem at all. On the contrary: I like seeing designs on the designers themselves, it keeps things personal and – real.

    Liked by 2 people

  211. Kate, I’m not in your clubs but I do follow your blog, and am very sorry to read this post. Your work and life give such inspiration and encouragement to everyone.

    Liked by 2 people

  212. This is too ridiculous for words! Your patterns, blog, books and pictures are true and real and honest and thought provoking on so many levels.
    Such a ‘weird’ mechanism in human nature to lash out and totally forget the person you are judging is a human being like you. Do to others as you would have them do to you. I do admire your calm summary of the comments!

    And it is so sad – to put it mildly- that we as a culture/society seem to judge (and usually not in a positive way) women in the first place by how they look: body shape, size, clothes, shoes, make up or no make up, glasses, crutches, hearing aid and so on.. To me it seems that women do this to other women at least as much if not more (or perhaps different) than men do this to women. I do not notice this same mechanism when it comes to ‘judging’ men.
    That’s enough of philosophising. Strathendrick is a brilliant design. I wish I could cast on immediately.

    Liked by 3 people

  213. There are some strange people with strange ideas
    out there. To me, when I see you modelling your
    patterns my first reaction is “how stunning is that
    jumper/shawl” second “can I knit it with my limited
    skills” third “stunning photography and landscape”
    which I think is most people’s reaction to your
    very talented work. That’s what you should take joy
    and strenght from.
    from. I hope you can ignore any negative
    comments

    Liked by 4 people

  214. Aaaaaargh! I find it quite scary in general how our whole discourse in a wider, political sense has changed so dramatically in recent times, how the boundaries of what can be said, who can be excluded or attacked etc. are constantly being pushed. I’m particularly saddened that this tendency is also rearing its ugly head in our beautiful little corner of the world, the knitting community; e.g. that quite a few comments on Ravelry design pages seem to be getting pretty unkind and personal, even hostile. Just think of the whole unpleasant Hygge debate … Kate, I admire you and your design work, and love Strathendrick and how you’re dealing with the bizarre negative reactions.

    Liked by 3 people

  215. Ah, this is sad. I’m so sorry. This kind of thing is something I’ve been thinking (obsessing?) about in recent weeks and it has changed my whole thinking and feeling about the public and private sides of running a creative business. Whether people are either being unthinkingly rude or deliberately trying to wound by making personal comments is immaterial; there is something dissociative about being behind a keyboard that empowers people to write things they would not have the gall to say to a person’s face I feel.

    I love seeing you (and other designer/makers) modelling designs. It makes them real and individual and also instantly marks a design as your brand and intellectual property. I’ve always viewed it as a privilege to be allowed into a moment of another person’s life through their writing, photography or creativity; there is a vulnerability about exposing one’s creative identity in order to share it with others. Because someone runs a business through those means of creative expression does not diminish that sense of respect nor should it make them “fair game” for what amounts to abuse.

    Liked by 4 people

  216. I was not aware that you get such comments, because in my eyes you look always brilliant in your handmade garments. There were similar thoughts on IG how one is looking and you are right, it is always weird to look at yourself. But I like to see the same hand knitted design in all sizes and the proudness of the knitter. Besides the fun of knitting and the love for yarn that is my main reason for making my own clothes: to fit the bodyshape I currently have. I admire your knowledge of knitting and yarn and your designs are lovely and the patterns are for XS and XXXL people. So what? As read in the comments you have enough support to forget these rude remarks.

    Liked by 3 people

  217. It mystifies me why some people take so much time to write such annoying and insulting comments, when they could easily just move on if they don’t like what they see…
    I think it is great and very brave ( no, I don’t like looking at myself in pictures either, and don’t know if I’d have the guts to model like you do ) to do the modelling yourself ! Oh, and I think you look wonderful in that sweater.

    Liked by 4 people

  218. Be proud of your designs, photos, yarns, colors , the person you are. That is all that counts.
    And as a compliment: they really fit you perfectly and that makes the pictures and the inspiration. Leave all the negative thoughts. As my mother always said: you know what really matters. Don’t explain this all the time to others because that takes so much time. Be yourself and that is all that matters.
    For me you are a great person with charisma. How about that?
    Bye. Miriam.

    Liked by 4 people

  219. It has always baffled me that people waste their valuable time sending negative comments and criticism over the internet… No one forces them to be there and look at the supposedly ‘offending’ pictures after all. But that someone would decide to go out of their way to personally criticise you for modelling YOUR OWN PATTERNS is impossible for me to understand. We should all learn to be comfortable with our own bodies, and if you ask me, those comments say a lot about them and nothing at all about you.

    Please continue doing what you’re doing exactly as you are doing it – knitting, designing, charting, modelling, writing… You are such a huge inspiration to so many of us, and it will take more than a couple of rude comments from insecure people to change that.

    Have a wonderful wonderful weekend in the WHW! :) :)

    Liked by 3 people

  220. Well done Kate and shame on those who have made unkind comments. It seems to be that there are a lot of “sick” people out there as is evidenced by other stories of social media abuse. You’re proud of what you do and rightly so. All power to your elbow. Your work is lovely Perhaps some people are jealous of your success and your abilities, and you can only feel sorry for them.

    Liked by 3 people

  221. I’m so inspired by both your knitting designs and your personal courage. I’m saddened by the people who are compelled to criticize. I hope you know they are simply wrong.

    Liked by 3 people

  222. I guess that women are still largely judged by how they look, not what they do, and I’m reasonably confident that those who blog about clothes for curvier women get abuse too.
    I walk with a stick and I’m have a troublesome menopause so my body is frequently not a pleasure to be in, but I still enjoy using it to create and enjoy adorning it with me-mades. One of the many joys of being a maker is that you get to choose on the basis of colour, fabric or pattern, not what some faraway designer decides is appropriate for your size or age.
    People who are implicitly (or worse explicitly) criticising your body shape have perhaps absorbed the notion that there is an ideal shape for a woman, and that you are nearer to it than they are – it’s envy then maybe? We would help ourselves as women if we could appreciate (as you say in your piece) that beauty comes from diversity not mandated sameness.
    I have not always agreed with your views, but love your knitting and design – more power to you!

    Liked by 4 people

  223. I can only heartily echo all the comments above. It saddens me that in 2018 women are still targeted in this manner – particularly so in the knitting and craft world – and like someone else above, it nearly brought me to tears thinking how awful it must be to receiving end of that sort of spite.
    How very sad it must be to be the sort of person with such nastiness going round in their head? What on earth has happened in their life to think it is acceptable to post such things, indeed to get some sort of pleasure out of it?
    You are an inspirational and talented person, who also happens to be a striking and beautiful model, please keep up your wonderful work!

    Liked by 3 people

  224. I am so angry that people think that they have a right to bully (yes I do mean bully) you or anyone else about how they look or what they wear. You have a wonderful talent to create garments that are a pleasure to knit and beautiful to look at. You live in a beautiful part of this country and I think that Tom’s photographs are wonderful. All I can think is that the bullies are jealous of what you and Tom have achieved. Please don’t take notice of what these bullies say. Live your life the way you want to. You give a lot of pleasure to many people and I for one hope that continues for a long time to come.

    Liked by 4 people

  225. I’m sorry to read that you’ve been the recipient of negative personal comments. Obviously, someone’s idea of normal or real body types depends to a great extent on how they look themselves, and I’m guessing that each of us would always like to see a design as it will appear on our own body. A quick walk through a busy city should convince anyone that that’s impossible. We’re all so different. The tops you’re showing here are lovely. You only need a little imagination and experience to guess how they would look on other shapes. Keep on showing your work, it’s beautiful.

    Liked by 4 people

  226. Why do people enjoy being unkind?
    What is normal? Or why do we have to conform?
    As a child I loved knowing people that were eccentric but now if you are different you have to be labelled with autism etc.
    We are ALL different.
    There is no normal. We are all individuals.
    I love you modelling your designs as it shows you are proud of them. They are wonderful. Thank you for designing my favourite pattern: Strathendrick.

    Liked by 4 people

  227. I love that you model your own designs precisely becuase the photos are ‘real’. The wonderful locations, Photography and your sense of style inspire me to become a better knitter so I can tackle some of your designs. Knitting in multiple colours is now on my list so I can knit this!
    My body shape is completely different to yours but I’d still much rather you modelled your own designs yourself. If I want know what something might look like on me I can always look on Ravelry.

    Liked by 2 people

  228. oh for goodness sakes! I’m 57 and 5 foot and probably twice your size, and I could not care less. We are both real. Your blog is your story about your thoughtful designs in your beautiful landscape (also very different to my home in baking South Australia; also real). We are not all the same. That is fine. I’d be as horrified if you used standardized models as if I did!

    Liked by 4 people

  229. As a plus-sized person I recognise that most patterns I want to sew or knit will not be modelled on a person of my size and shape. But, I have a tape measure and am able to work out (especially due to your well thought out schematics!) if a garment will fit me. I admire the hard work you put into to being so open about your process and the inspirations behind all your wonderful products. I love knowing that I can knit your patterns as is with no-mods because they are so well crafted and tested, something that often is overlooked is lieu of fancy styling. You’re one of the only designers I know who actually scales necklines and shoulder shaping correctly for plus sizes. No massively gaping necklines for me!

    It’s easy to be a critic, but it’s hard to be original. Looking forward to the happiness knitting my next Kate Davies project will bring.

    Liked by 3 people

  230. One of the things I love most about the indie designer garment designer companies (both knitted and sewn) are that the projects are shown on unprofessional models – be them the designers themselves or their friends. To me these are the best examples of how a design will look on someone that doesn’t have the time to curate their image daily – and if I need to see the garment on someone with a body type closer to mine I’ll allways have ravelry and instagram hashtag searches. Please don’t ever consider hiring and making photoshoots with professional models, your husband’s photos are gorgeous and you are the best model you will ever find, no one will convey the love for the wool and for design as well as you. To me you’re a huge source of strenght and inspiration. Don’t let the trolls get to you, they’re just unhappy and unsatisfied people that think the best way of dealing with their insecurities is to pick on someone else’s.

    Liked by 4 people

  231. Dear Kate…. people are sometimes not very nice to each other – and it is easy and “cost nothing” to write angry things on this digital media. I just dont understand why people, who has this problems contact you, instead of finding patterns somewhere else.
    I am a size 44 and have most of your patterns and books. I have no problems to find size for me – or change a bit.
    Love the way you design and the landscape in Scotland.
    Have bought flying tickets and festival tickets to me and my daughter for Festival in Edinburg.
    The biggest reason to come was to meet you on your stand – see your stand and hear your show Friday or Saturday. Unfortunately I did not get tickets for your show and I can’t see your name on the list over stands!!!!
    You cant be lucky every time…….
    Now I will order your Strathendrick on Ravelry……

    Liked by 4 people

  232. I am so sorry to hear that you have had these distressing comments.
    I have been amazed at the amount of body-image anxiety in the posts for the WHW club! As a short and roundy 70 year old who used to be sylph like, but now doesn’t care, l shall be knitting Strathendrick for myself and loving it! Please try not to mind about these sad people with their mean minded comments, let’s be grateful that we don’t have to live inside their heads? Meanwhile you are a huge inspiration for me and many other people.

    Liked by 4 people

  233. Your designs are carefully written and tested for a wide range of body sizes, and for men, women, whoever – the quality of the work speaks for itself. Everything else should be a side issue – how people can “judge” you for what you look like in a picture – well, I thought we’d passed all that and left it behind!

    Appreciate your work, the fact you’ve set up a business, your passion in finding the right people to work with, your blog and your attitude. I couldn’t have written so perceptively and calmly about others judging me.

    Liked by 3 people

  234. I am immensely sorry to read that you’ve been getting jerky comments and I hope you are able to shrug them off to some degree. It – horribly – appears to be an almost inevitable side-effect of being a woman with a public profile that people feel they are qualified not only to judge but to pass on to you their opinions that they would never have the bad manners to express otherwise. Utterly unacceptable. I love your designs – even those that I know I couldn’t personally carry off! – because they are always beautiful and super-skillful and above all thoughtful. You do an amazing job.

    Liked by 3 people

  235. I think, Kate, you have very eloquently highlighted this blight of the modern internet age where people think they can say something online that they would never dare say face to face. It must appear to these very small minded people that we are interested in what they say – it really is best to ignore them, as hard as that can be when it is a personal remark. I am so surprised that this happens in the knitting community. And you are not alone, recently the knitting magazine ‘Laine’ were shocked at the horrible remarks online about their model. The knitting community I know and love is made up of talented people of all shapes, sizes, religions, abilities, genders etc, we all just love yarn and pattern no matter what size we are. So please carry on doing what you and Tom to so well, you both have marvellous talents and so many of us get a lot if pleasure from reading your blog, your books and patterns and Tom’s photographs.

    And finally I just have to say that Strathendrick is a modern colour work masterpiece!

    Liked by 6 people

  236. yeah, all of the above
    I am continually astonished at the rudeness of people. I can say as a fellow stroke survivor you not only model your beautiful clothes, but also the potential for full living following a major injury
    thanks mate
    Tony

    Liked by 7 people

  237. Frankly, I cannot imagine anything more “real” than a designer proudly presenting her own designs. This as real as it gets. I love to look at your photos, they’re not only beautyful, they’re “honest” – you don’t pretend anybody – you are yourself in your environment in harmony with your designs. Don’t ever let other people project their own insecurities and feelings of inadequacy on you.

    Liked by 4 people

  238. Ignore them! These guys need to get a life.
    Off to feed my sheep wearing your Carbeth sweater and if I don’t look as good as you do in it who cares. Certainly not my snowbound sheep.

    Liked by 4 people

  239. Your design is beautiful and would suit a very wide range of body shapes. I am constantly disgusted at people who abuse the Internet to post negative and offensive comments. My only advice is to ignore these people and focus on the comments from those of us who enjoy your creations and your modelling of them.

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  240. Unbelievable! How dare people criticise you or your body size? Your designs, your skill and your amazing style should all be celebrated! Yes, I would love to be delicately built like you and able to wear clothes with such panache – in fact I was showing a friend a photo of me standing next to you at EYF 2016 where I look like have eaten 3 of you! I had to dramatically edit the photo to crop 2/3rds of myself off before I could post it on Instagram!!! 😂
    You are strikingly good looking, incredibly stylish, fantastically talented, brilliantly intelligent and such an utter inspiration to us all with how you have fought back from your stroke.
    Ignore the muppets!!
    Fan girl comment over!!

    Liked by 6 people

  241. Hi Kate,
    I’m so angry I can hardly type….
    I love your blog, everything about, it even though I never comment. Can’t believe people, (presumably women) can be so ignorant. I’m sorry you have been hurt by these comments. You are an inspiration to me and many others. As someone who has had debilitating illness, and an ex model, I say “Don’t stop” ! You are wonderful……

    Liked by 6 people

  242. OMG 😲
    I follow you on Twitter, receive your
    newsletter and how BAD am I that I don’t
    think about your figure as a model!
    I love Tom’s and your own photography
    and I study both whatever knitted garment
    you are wearing and the landscape. Unless,
    of course, Bruce is in the photo. How remiss
    of me to fail to pass judgment on your
    modelling!!!! I apologise most sincerely,
    but have to inform you that my behaviour
    is not about to change 😂
    I think some people need to get a life!

    Liked by 6 people

  243. I love that you model your own designs. I think it is wonderful that the maker is the wearer. There is authenticity in your photographs and I think that comes from your inimate knowledge of the garment and your pride in creating something beautiful and useful.

    Liked by 4 people

  244. I love to see your designs photographed in such beautiful locations. I am of a similar height and it is refreshing to see your designs.Look forward to next pattern

    Liked by 3 people

  245. Sorry to hear about the comments makes me sad. I love your designs and applaud post stroke recovery and continued strength. Shoot Who better to model your designs than you? You designed them right? I think you do an excellent job with sizing to accommodation large or us plus size gals. Do people even know what work it is in writing and pattern grading? People are always going to complain about something even if you had a plus size model. Trust me the world would be boring if everyone was the same. Keep doing you and they don’t want to buy then don’t buy. Gosh how awful faceless people can be when they never lived a day in your shoes. Stay strong My best to you always.

    Liked by 5 people

  246. Your posts are always inspiring Kate but this one is particularly so on many levels. It is a real privilege to have you share your wonderful images of yourself modelling beautifully crafted designs in your stunning environment. Your achievements are considerable by any standards but after experiencing a stroke at such a young age are quite literally inspirational. Thank you.

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  247. Hi Kate

    I find this post gobsmacking. I think its very telling that on your IG page, people often ask where you get your clothes from, your patterns are hugely successful and that’s because they love your style! We all want to find coats and skirts like yours to go with your knitwear. That anyone would make disparaging remarks just astounds me. Please change nothing. People!

    Off to go an have a brew.

    Liked by 5 people

  248. I have to say I’m saddened and horrified that anyone would think it was ok to approach you (well they’re obviously not brave enough for that by hiding behind their screens) and and think that it was ok to say these things to you! They should be ashamed of themselves! Personally I have nothing but admiration for you and your journey both physically and through KDD.
    As for your amazing design this week…well as I said on Ravelry…..it is the most beautiful sweater I have ever seen.
    I’m off now with a cup of tea to read about Strathendrick!!

    Liked by 3 people

  249. wow, and here i was thinking ‘how does that woman keep her shape so lovely and slim..must be all the walking in the Scottish lands.. ‘… i did know you had a stroke, i didn’t know your body is disabled and i never saw anything on photos that struck me as …. ‘weird’?? what is weird anyway.. weird is a weird word.. ;-).

    Carbeth had to grow on me, but that has nothing to do with your body-shape.. i always knit fitted vintage-style cardigans and jumpers (i am 44, 1,82m height and think i need to loose weight) and jumping over from negative ease to positive ease turns out to be a big step for me….. but.. i have picked out my yarn and Carbeth is on my ‘to do list’ on no 1 spot after my current (fitted) project.

    Strathendrick had to grow on me even more and i am starting to love that too.. i am expanding my horizon it seems.. lol.
    It looks so comfortable and i love the color choices and pattern.. i think it looks great on you and the very very positive ease will be a joy to knit for a change :-). no worries about hip, waist and bustshaping here yayyy..

    Keep your spirits up. You live in the most beautiful place on earth (we need to get on a ferry and in car to get there), you design fantastic knitwear and you can’t please everybody, so please do not try.. ;-).

    To quote Thumper: If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nothin’ at all .. and i am Dutch for crying out loud (Dutch equals ‘direct and rude’ in the worlds opinion, doesn’t it?? lol).

    Liked by 5 people

  250. Kate, you said this very well and I agree with you-some comments I’ve read lately have seemed rather critical. The style of the Strathendrick is so beautiful to me on all body types, so flowing, oversized, and extremely comfortable. When I read your newsletters I look forward to seeing you model your designs, you are very striking to me…

    Liked by 2 people

  251. I agree with you, everybody is a different shape, but what matters the most , is the ability to look past the model ‘s body shape and look at the design, the design is the most important, in the eye of who is looking , not the model shape , if that was the case then how many of us would be wearing clothes , not every one is 5ft 10in or above and a size zero , what you design and wear can be worn by anyone, It is just a matter of personal taste, ie = do you like the colours , shape, could you see yourself wearing and using the design, in my eyes Kate, you are a normal woman with dare i say it, a natural flair for knowing how to model what ever it is that you are wearing , not everybody can do that , I for one enjoy seeing you modelling what you have designed and made .This for me is what makes Kate Davies Designs different and stand out from the crowd , so please continue to do .thank you for all the pleasure you have given me .Best wishes xx

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  252. Well said Kate , I love this design , in fact I love all your designs , can’t wait to get started once my yarn arrives . You are an amazing lady and have an amazing talent whether it be design or writing , thank you for everything you put out there in to the big wide world.

    Liked by 6 people

  253. How weird and horrid. I remember how appalled I was by the way the term ‘real women’ was applied to women of size 16+ a few years ago in many magazine articles and elsewhere, when plus-size clothing was trumpeted as ‘designed to fit real women’ – as if to say ‘you’re the real women, those slim ones you’ve envied for years are androgynous in their slenderness and lack of curves.’ I recall a comment by a naturally slim woman saying ‘actually, I’m a real woman too…’ One joy of the blossoming of knitting design over the past 10 years or so has been the way that thoughtful designers like yourself have embraced the needs of many and diverse body shapes and sizes, and risen to the challenge of designing sweaters that can fit and look good on anyone; often with helpful notes about where to add length or short rows to alter the shaping to suit the wearer.

    I am also amazed at how rude people can be to total strangers I would say its the anonymity of the interwebz thingie, but I’ve heard so many comments in supermarket queues, bus stops and other public places over the years that I fear rudeness will find a way out in a myriad of places. I used to work with the recently bereaved, who were sometimes on the receiving end of the most unbelievable comments and observations.

    I love seeing the photos of you, in your colourful and happy skirts and coats and handknits – I am not petite and slim, but I find your beautiful pictures an inspiration, and I love wearing the sweaters I’ve made from your patterns.

    Liked by 6 people

  254. Just keep doing what you have always been doing Kate – living a creative, honest way of life. You are an inspirational woman to me and I am sure to hundreds of other people.

    Liked by 5 people

  255. Well… all I can say is… never mind them. Obviously as a small company, you can’t have every size modelled – that’d be a fortune in yarn, time to knit the sizes, and finding people to model them all…

    Besides, have any of those people ever looked at your patterns? I’m on the large side, and your designs are some of the few I know will be sized big enough to fit me. You are one of the most inclusive designers I know of, in terms of accounting for diversity of body shapes. Most of your patterns include “how to adapt this pattern for length” details, which not everybody bothers to do…

    So yeah. Carry on, as you are…

    Liked by 7 people

  256. I’m sitting here on my own reading this over breakfast and I feel like standing up and giving you a standing ovation. Thank you, Kate, for what you do, what you write, and how you wrote it.

    Liked by 3 people

  257. This thoughtful post has spurred me to write a comment which occurred to me when you mentioned that this design suits your mother—I bet I am a similar age, size and shape to your mother, and I would love to see it on her, if she is not too shy, or someone equally similar. Not instead of you and your friends, all of whom have become very real to me over the years, but in addition. I don’t look at you and see a disabled woman, I see Kate, who is an honorary member of our knitting group, as we decided when we realised that we never get together without your name coming up. I hope you enjoy your time with us! We are huge fans and read your every word.

    Liked by 6 people

  258. Well put Kate, thank you. Love the vintage colour work. As far as I’m concerned these pics are works of art. The way that you engage with your life and work evidenced by what you have written in this article, imho, completely supports this view. Your openness, straight forward honesty and integrity is an inspiration.

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  259. A beautiful jumper, beautifully modelled by a strong and real woman. You are inspirational and your gifts to the knitting community are not just your awesome patterns but your whole story. Keep on doing what you do and know that those negative comments reflect the views of only a tiny minority of your readers and say far more about them than they do about you.

    Liked by 4 people

  260. As someone who has followed your post-stroke journey and had her own to navigate, the pictures of you modelling your own designs and the story of your business are inspirational. I look forward to new posts, new patterns and more wonderful photos. Thank you.

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  261. Well, I love Strathendrick. I adore your patterns and sense of colour. Your writing is phenomenal. One of the bonus’ about the lovely Kate modelling her own designs is that I share a similar figure and for once, I get to see how a garment would look on me. So to all the nasty commentators out there, here’s a big, fat raspberry from me. “Real women” may have curves, but they may also be skinny, or slim, or slim on top and curvy on the bottom, or curvy on top and slim on the bottom. Come on women, until we start backing each other, those creeps in their dressing gowns will beat us!

    Liked by 7 people

  262. Average, by definition, is what is not “real”. As someone who has lived long enough to go from super slim to dumpling lady, I appreciate that not every style will suit every body or, indeed, everybody, but that’s what’s so great about making your own clothes. You can alter designs, add or subtract ease, length, whatever… I think you have a wonderful, personal sense of style and I always enjoy seeing your designs modelled by you. Unique and lovely is far preferable to “average” in my book!

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  263. Kate, you are such a pretty women, dont worry about negative comments.
    Every body is unique, and we have only that one :-)) i think.
    The modeling pictures are perfekt, with such friendly an peaceful atmosphäre. Thats a gift.
    And your question , —does anyone really like looking at pictures of themselves—–for me personaly no :-)))

    Liked by 3 people

  264. I think you may be reaching a much wider audience than before. I commend you for, among many other attributes, the eloquent restraint in your response to – shall we say – unfriendly and pointless feedback. My Scottish grandmother used to say “Good riddance to bad rubbish.” Press on, just as you are, and continue to inspire the worthy of the masses.♡♡♡
    Cheers,
    Terry/tadpoletroll

    Liked by 6 people

  265. I just think it’s very realistic to model your own designs if you are a small company, they look very nice on you. I think you are very brave after all the things that came on your path. Keep on doing it! I really enjoy it that you model your own knitwear, it looks more wearable than with a fancy model, and after all, we are all people that are not perfect, but that is just what makes us unique! Keep on doing it you always look lovely!

    Liked by 5 people

  266. hello Kate, as I am french, I hope my words will be right!
    i can’t understand why people are weird against you
    you and your models are wonderfull, do people hope you will show modeling , tall, small, fat, skinny people? if so they are crazy!!:)don’t worry , your work is amazing and you are a beautifull woman outside and Inside
    I follow you since…………………………………;) and I am impressed by what you have done
    stay as you are, keep your modeling as it is, all is perfect
    tom’s photos are stunning too
    once again I do hope I have writting what I mean :)
    love fanfan

    Liked by 6 people

  267. I’m stunned that people comment like this about you, it’s so……………….well words fail me. As women (and i know that men are part of the knitting family too, but a generalization is women) we should be kind to each other and recognise that we all come in different shapes and sizes, we all like different garment styles and sizes – we are all unique individuals, and there should be no need to make personal comments. You clearly have the confidence to ignore these comments, but people have to realise the damage they could cause to a more fragile psyche, and think before they type or speak – I was once told by a very wise women if you can’t say something good then don’t say anything at all, and in this instance it applies.

    Liked by 2 people

  268. Congratulations on all you have achieved – I think you are amazing. You must be very strong and very determined to have come back to being able to knit these wonderful designs. Well done!.

    Liked by 2 people

  269. I can’t believe anyone thinks they have the right to comment on your body or you modelling your own garments! What right do they have to pass judgement?! It’s just pure ignorance, I think. I love the photos, they’re beautiful yet informative and, whether it’s you or Mel or whoever modelling, they clearly show the shape and form of the knitting and how the colour combinations work, which is surely the whole point of the image in the first place. Here’s to more fab photos of you and your beautiful knitting Kate!

    Liked by 6 people

  270. I’ve never written a response to your posts before, but this post is upsetting, take no notice of the cruel remarks. I’m sure most people who follow you are like me, a keen knitter who appreciates the design and colours of your work, and of course the beautiful photography. Long may you both continue.

    Liked by 8 people

    1. What’s the matter with some people? I so agree with Joyce Russell. Love your designs, really inspiring, your husbands photography the whole package. You look wonderful. I’m new to Fair Isle, thought it was beyond me, but just finished your Peerie Flooers and I love it. Am hooked! thanks to you.

      Liked by 1 person

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