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The Debbie Bliss Story | A tale of grit, determination and creativity

The Debbie Bliss Story | A tale of grit, determination and creativity

My knitting journey began, professionally I suppose, when I was doing fashion and textiles at art college and I found there were certain things I wasn’t really very good at – pattern cutting being quite an essential one and wandered into one of the other studios where they had knitting machines and just started working on them. The idea that you’re able to create the fabric and create the stitches and put them together, I just found wonderful. When I left college I was doing knitted plants and I was selling those to some of the shops, I did some commissions for Liberty where I did things like trailing fuchsia And then, because I got publicity for that, that’s when I started being commissioned from magazines to do hand hand-knit design whereas before it had always been machine-knits. Building the brand was, it was an incredible amount of teamwork I was approached by a distributor in the UK – Designer Yarns and so I was then licensed to them until very recently. It gave me a chance to concentrate as I say on the more aesthetic and creative part. But it was incredibly hard, enormous amounts of work. The rewards have been, in terms of the ability to see the yarn being out there, to see knitters enjoying the yarn have been wonderful. Early in December 2017, Designer Yarns became insolvent which obviously had a huge impact on me, on the people that worked there and everyone that was involved in the business. It was incredibly stressful and a really worrying time for me and also for my family, you know, my daughter works with me – and also we’re a very close family too. One of the things that had been quite frightening too, I think, was that the brand was just going to disappear and I’d felt that, I’d built that up over the 40 years, through the hard work. I really wanted that to carry on. I’ve always had a really friendly relationship with the people at LoveCrafts and I was really delighted to see them come into the business because having been in it so long I thought it was refreshing to have, you know the next generation of entrepreneurs coming in and having really exciting ideas. They’ve always made me feel incredibly welcome so I did actually feel part of their family even before they approached me about taking the brand on themselves. And I’m just delighted to be part of that.

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