I blogged a while back about a reversibly cabled scarf I created for a class I taught this fall. I gave no thought to selling the pattern, as I created it because I wanted to teach a class on reversible cables and I couldn't find an existing pattern with enough interest in it. The existing patterns were either nothing but plain rope cables, or they were all-over woven cables. I wanted something that would hold my interest over 5 balls of yarn, something that would teach knitters something about cables in general and reversible cables specifically.
So I designed this scarf:
(Isn't that cool? You can buy it from Ravelry, even if you aren't a member)
Which I think of as the Scarf o' Love, because of the OXOX cable pattern up the center. (Makes a great Valentine's Day gift, don't you think?)
I had in mind that the people who would sign up for the class would have had previous experience with cables and would take this class to discover the secret of making the cables reversible, perhaps preferring to convert cables of their choice into their own scarf pattern.
Turns out people signed up for the class because they liked the scarf. Most of the students had never done a cable of any sort. No one was interested in designing their own.
Sophia (my finicky 11-year-old) asked me to knit one for her.
I brought Sophia's scarf (which ended up being the scarf I demonstrated techniques on to the class) to knitting group one morning, and the women in my knitting group wanted to know if they could have the pattern.
The sales staff in the shop told me people were asking to buy the pattern. People on Ravelry were sending me private messages asking if I was planning to sell the pattern.
I really couldn't have been more surprised.
Because I hd originally created the scarf as a teaching tool, I had to modify what I had into a pattern that was just a pattern, and not a series of handouts. I watched my students to see where they had difficulties or confusion following the pattern and altered the instructions accordingly.
Then I signed up as a Designer on Ravelry so my pattern could be listed, and then I signed up to have my own Ravelry Shop so I could offer the pattern as a downloadable PDF.
So as of today I am a Ravelry Shop Keeper. Go me!