Meet the Author
Hey there, can you introduce yourself?
I am a copywriter, turned political researcher, turned knitting writer. So I've tried quite a few things in my time, but creating and knitting is the place I love being - though I have no formal training in the area. I live just outside London with my husband and teenage son.
Tell us a bit about the book?
I think my Scarves and Cowls book really has got something to suit all tastes and most levels of knitting - from the super simple to a few give-it-a-go lacy styles. There are 36 projects in all, so there are lots of style to choose from and styles suitable for men, women and children.
What was the inspiration behind it?
The team at my publishers and I both knew that scarves are a really popular among knitters because they don't take too much time or too much yarn. But looking through available patterns, they seemed a touch too traditional. So we decided to come up with something that was a bit more contemporary, a bit more colourful, and lots of fun.
Which is your favourite project?
My favourite project in the book is the simple capelet scarf knitted in a lovely silky Rowan DK yarn in a soft orange. It's a simple stitch and there's absolutely no shaping - so it's a very straightforward knit. But I think it looks really stylish. As a redhead myself, I also really like all the scarves modelled by the very cool looking guy with the big ginger beard.
What is your craft space like?
My craft space - my little upstairs spare room - has become more of a yarn storage depot and there's not much room in there for me at the moment! So I tend to work at my kitchen table because it's nice and light and the table is big enough to host my yarns, papers, computer etc. It also means that I'm near the oven, phone, washing machine and front door - so I can carry stir the spag bol, put a load of laundry through and answer the doorbell, without having to move too far.
Have you always been creative?
I've always loved making stuff. I spent a lot of time with my granny when I was younger and she loved knitting, sewing, crochet - and also weaving and lace making. And I went to a convent in the 60s - a time when girls were supposed to prioritize skills like knitting over proficiency in maths and chemistry.
When did you first start crafting?
The first thing I made was a pale yellow knitted dishcloth which was admittedly a little drab. The first thing I made that I felt really proud of was some flowery fabric floppy-eared dogs - the sort that have come back into fashion on the recent retro vibe. I made them for my mum to sell at her church bazaar. I think I was about 11 or 12 at the time.
Who are your crafty heroes?
I love Debbie Bliss - she started out when knitting wasn't nearly as fashionable as it is now and has reinvented herself brilliantly along the way. And her knitting yarns are beautiful. I also love Cath Kidston, not just for her lovely designs but also for doing everything a little differently and making it work. And I have to mention my great friend Samantha Stas (she's on Etsy and also devises craft projects for quite a few magazines). We worked in a pottery together and ran a sewing business some years back. I taught her a bit about sewing - and, as a trained designer, she taught me loads about colour and design.
Where do you find inspiration?
I look in lots of different places for inspiration - old sewing and knitting books, the totally-addictive Pinterest website, and beautiful shops such as Conran and Skandium. The main problem these days is whittling down all the inspiration and keeping myself vaguely focused.
What's next for you?
My next book is called Beanies and bobble hats and, like Scarves and cowls, it has styles to suit all tastes and knitting skills. And I'm working on a book of knitted animal-style scarves. A couple of years ago I published a book full of animal hats - such as a fox, bear and tiger hats. So a scarf book along the same lines had to happen!
Whatever your skill level and however little spare time you have, Fiona Goble has a project for you. She has designed 35 scarves and snoods with something for everyone, from an animal scarf to a sparkly evening capelet, and from an extra-long "college" scarf to a cowboy-style bandana for kids.