Lucy Fisher

Community Stories

Reinventing Knitting for the Future

Lucy Fisher, an RGU Alumni, was part of the Startup Accelerator programme this year. She writes of her experience of working with family to create a global community of knitters.

Hello I’m Lucy, and I was part of cohort two on the RGU Start Up Accelerator Programme. My business idea, Knit It, aims to reinvent knitting patterns.

Who is KnitIt?

Ever since I was eight and received my first knitting kit from my Grandma Marge I have loved to knit. But it wasn't always a walk in the park... I found it so hard to find inspiration, find a pattern that I liked and that I had the skills to knit. I'd struggle with terminology, abbreviations, instructions, get lost counting stitches and keeping my place. Until one day inspired by my Grandma's persistence, encouragement and help, I decided to stop following (or rather getting stuck with) patterns and start making my own - reimagining what a knitting pattern could be! And some were fabulous and some a fabulous disaster. But when it worked, oh boy did it work! This was because I was able to use my digital skills to incorporate tools that solved all my problems. That's why it's our vision to create the Knit It Platform, to reinvent knitting for the future, invite a new digital generation to learn and create a global community of knitters! The Knit It Platform will offer digital knitting patterns, tools, tutorials and more making following, finding and sharing patterns easy. Using modern technology and interactive tools we aim to remove difficulty making knitting enjoyable, faster and fun!

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Rather unusually for a start-up, our business is a family business. Our team consists of me, my Grandma and my Mum. We are a tight-knit family (pardon the pun) and have really enjoyed working together so far. I lead the business and creative side, and my mum who is an account looks after the finances. She has also had her own business so is quite a useful addition. My Grandma is super proud and is enjoying that we are all now connected by a craft that she has enjoyed for most of her life. She is still my go-to-guide for any knitting query and has been knitting along through video calls during lockdown.

The Startup Accelerator Experience

Overall, the RGU Start Up Accelerator programme has been so motivational and also very constructive. The guidance and direction were absolutely critical to getting what was in my head out onto paper then shaping it into a plan and creating a business. It has provided me with the tools and knowledge to progress. I have definitely gained confidence in pitching and presenting in front of groups and conversing with customers and mentors. I have a greater belief in myself and the idea now that I have started to test the desirability, feasibility and viability of Knit It, and have heard positive results. I have found the value of working with a team, with different skills sets and opinions really helpful and insightful as they consider elements I would overlook on my own. Even just bouncing ideas off each other sparks so much energy and excitement.

As a cohort we have enjoyed a chilled environment and have been able to network and help each other and even spent our first session getting to know each other banging 30 large bongo drums! I would definitely encourage anyone who has a potential business idea to apply next year as the support you get is the push you need to make it happen.

What’s next

Following our success at Startup Sunday Live where the esteemed judges awarded Knit It with the ‘Most Improved Idea’ prize and coming second in the ‘Audience Choice Vote’ we hope to put the prize money towards the launch of our pilot product the KnitPics! This will allow knitters to purchase a knitting pattern of their own photograph and enable them to knit their own masterpiece – we are hoping to have this ready for launch at the end of summer! We will also be trying to build our brand following and presence on social media with our grassroots digital marketing strategy across Instagram, Facebook and YouTube – you can find us at @hello_knit_it. Finally, we are working with web developers to build the minimum viable product of the Knit It Platform which we hope to have ready for Christmas!

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