Monday, December 04, 2006

Happiness is...an obsession satisfied.

I knew there was a good reason for knitblogging, along with getting to show your pretty finished objects. This weekend, I was overwhelmed, impressed, and thrilled by the feedback I got on my Sweet Mary Jane obsession. I thought about adding an update to the original post, but decided, no. This is too good. Let me walk you through it.

First of all, thanks to those of you who indulged me with sympathetic comments of the "that blows" variety. I knew you all would understand better than anyone the disappointment of a discontinued pattern. But before most comments had been posted, I got an email from the vice president of Knitpicks. Yes, you read that correctly. She wrote:

I saw your blog post about your frustration in trying to obtain the Sweet Mary Jane pattern. I am sorry our customer service rep did not give you more information. Knit Picks licensed that pattern for one year, and now the rights have reverted to the designer, Celeste Culpepper. I bet she would be willing to sell you the pattern.

Which explains why a pattern might be discontinued with a particular company, but not totally dead in the water. Anyway, the VP gave me the designer's email address so that I might contact her directly.

Can I tell you how weirded out I was by this, initially? I certainly didn't email the company; I'm guessing that they must do Technorati searches for their name to see what people might be reporting. But the more I thought about it, the more impressed I became.

Because, and I know you will be stunned by this news, I have not yet bought anything from Knitpicks. Not a single skein of sock yarn. And yet this woman wrote directly to me to help with an issue that wouldn't directly profit her company. That, my friends, is customer service. And, additionally, an understanding of the market, which must be increasingly driven by blog buzz.

I also want to send a warm thanks to saleknitter, a commenter who didn't leave her email address, otherwise I would email her directly. She suggested a number of helpful things, including searching for other bloggers who have made the pattern and seeing if they might part with it; looking at the errata pdf and deciding if I really still had to have the pattern; and posting on Ebay's Want It Now (which I didn't know anything about...what a great idea!).

Finally, Jennifer actually has that pattern and has offered a swap, so if we can work something out, I think this is the way I might go.

Really. Who knew that one little whiny post could lead to so much good information? You all are beyond fantastic.

12 Comments:

At 2:12 PM, Blogger Nancy said...

You know what they say - the whiny wheel gets the grease! Glad you found the pattern!!

 
At 2:53 PM, Blogger Laura said...

holy cow. i am so impressed with knit picks. i have never heard of a knitting business that is so in touch with their potential customers. truly, truly wow.

that is a lovely pattern. it would be a shame if the designer did not sell it herself.

 
At 6:32 PM, Blogger Ashley said...

That is good to hear about KnitPicks--I tend to put them into the "icky business" category since they made KnitPixie/kpixie change their name, but it is nice that they are in touch with their customer base, and especially nice that they'd make this kind of gesture that doesn't profit them directly.

 
At 6:31 AM, Blogger Jennifer said...

Wow! That is incredible customer service!

 
At 7:06 AM, Blogger Saun said...

This is such a coincidence. I had to talk with someone at Knitpicks last week and before I could get out my name, she said she knew who I was. It really threw me. I tend to forget that the folks in the corporate offices are knitters at heart and are into the blogs and everything. It's the customer service folks that tend to give them a bad image. I'm so glad you found a way to get the pattern.

 
At 11:52 AM, Anonymous amanda cathleen said...

wow, now that is incredible customer service!! Glad you where able to find the pattern. Nothing makes me want to knit something more than either the pattern being discontued or the yarn! : )

 
At 9:01 AM, Blogger msubulldog said...

That's definitely some customer service! Color me impressed. :)

 
At 1:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Awww, Olga, yayyy! That's phenomenal! And now we also know which question to ask when a pattern has been discontinued. I like Knitpicks very much, although the whole Knitpixie thing... Ehhh... Did she get the name before or after the company was started? I get most of my yarn from them and from yarn.com. Not from my LYS, I'm afraid, but lemme tell you, there is something really heady about cones of mill end yarn. At any rate, it is most impressive that they got in touch with you so fast and that you found a solution! Knitta sista powa!!

 
At 1:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I cannot believe it! I love that Mary Jane Cardigan pattern. I have been drooling over it for ages in one of their old catalogs...and after deciding to make it my next project...I headed over to KnitPicks last night (12-09) to order a download. I was quite disturbed to realize that it just was not anywhere to be found! Still obsessed, I googled it today and found your blog. Ahhhhh, another knitter with the urge to knit that cardigan...who can relate to my chagrin! Would you pass on the name of the designer so this knitter can hopefully buy a copy. Thanks! I learned a lesson...buy things you know you love when you first see them... and add 'em to the "stash"..even if that stash is overflowing! Heck, for all the time I spent chasing the pattern, I could have already had a good portion of it done!

 
At 11:56 PM, Blogger Sara said...

OK, I am joining the queue. I, too, was wanting this pattern. I emailed knitpicks and was told the same thing except they didn't give me a way to contact Celeste Culpepper. I would very much like her contact info, too...Thank you!!

 
At 11:19 AM, Blogger Sara said...

Hi Again, Fellow Knitters,
I re-contacted Knitpicks re: the Sweet Mary Jane Cardigan and they did indeed give me Celeste Culpepper's email. I emailed her and she kindly sent me the pattern and errata as PDF files. What she asked in return in lieu of payment is a small donation to "Knitters Without Borders" on the Yarn Harlot website at http://www.yarnharlot.ca/blog/tsffaq.html Rather than post her email here on the open web (and leaving her open to mailbox stuffing), you can email Knitpicks customer service and they will send the address to you. I hope this helps!

 
At 8:38 PM, Blogger Marlene said...

Just in case somebody is still looking for this pattern it is available for free now at the designers website:
http://www.celesteknits.ca/

Beautiful! I plan to knit it soon...

 

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