Episode 40: The Prince of Brioche – An Interview With Stephen West

'Thighlighters' by Stephen West. Image Copyright Westknits. ‘Thighlighters’ by Stephen West. Image Copyright Westknits.[/caption]

A chat with Westknits at Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2015

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Don your finest swants my friends, because it’s time to pull up a pew and chat with Stephen West. Edinburgh Yarn Festival was the venue and Westy brought his A game when it came to the brioche.

The Interview

First up Stephen introduces his alter ego, Eastknits. You can find out more about him on YouTube – episode 1 is embedded for your viewing pleasure. Who doesn’t love a good parody?

Stephen first took up knitting as a backstage activity to pass the time, whilst he studied dance and musical theatre. Unlike other crafts he had tried, knitting was ‘the one’ and he was hooked. He designed his first pattern for a local knitting shop and it grew from there; initially following ‘the rules’, as evidenced by his earlier, more conservative designs, to the more exploratory and boundary extending recent works.

When he’s not on tour, Stephen spends much of his day knitting and designing by the seat of his swants. He never frogs knitting and embraces the act of moving forward in his work. He also works a couple of days a week at his yarn shop in Amsterdam. His favourite Amsterdam knitty emporium is De Afstap.


What’s the Desert Island Skein? Stephen declares Tosh Merino Light in Edison Bulb, without a moment’s hesitation. I can see why.


Regarding the brioche, Westy pays homage to Nancy Marchant. If you want to find out more about it, Nancy’s website gives a good rundown. It’s the stitch of the year 2015, so watch out for Westknits’ take on the brioche coming up.

There’s also a Craftsy class on brioche with Nancy Marchant.

Brioche Knitting: Exploring Color & Texture (w/Nancy Marchant)

You can find Westknits on the web as well as on Ravelry, where you’ll also find links to all the mentioned social media channels.

And I leave you with the Swants Dance…

Enjoy this episode? Check out these interviews with Kate Davies, Justyna Lorkowska and Victoria Magnus of Eden Cottage Yarns.


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