I've been noticing that I approach my knitting the way I approach most of the things in my life...research, research, research! I haven't felt the need to write my own patterns yet; Part of the fun for me is becoming inspired by a pattern, choosing a yarn (rarely do I use the yarn called for in the pattern), and then looking at other knitters' finished projects to decide on any modifications to the pattern that I might need to do. Ravelry.com is perfect for me, as it is essentially a database of knitting knowledge.
Aesthetically, I seem to go to two extremes: either simple stockinette and interesting shapes, or cables and lace and romantic details. I love to pick a pattern that is both beautiful and would be fun to wear. I've been noticing that certain designers really speak to me with their designs--I've only done a couple of projects from each, but my to-knit list is getting long, thanks to these lovely women. Links to a few of my favorite designers' blogs/websites, in no particular order (sorry about the photos...most of these are pre-blog pictures):
Mercedes Tarasovich-Clark...she often designs patterns for hand-dyed yarn. Here is my Girl Friday Cardigan, of her design.
Jane Richmond...classic, often stunning garments. I knit a simple pullover that she designed, called the Oatmeal Pullover. There are several other of her designs that I can't wait to do--mainly scarves and hats.
Sweaterbabe...feminine, beautiful, well-written patterns. She usually incorporates cables or lace, and nice shaping. I'm currently working on her Lush and Lacy Cardigan, and I get to review one of her gorgeous new patterns! More on that one later this week.
Hannah Fettig...simple-looking but elegant garments; many are knit in lighter weight yarn, which is perfect for the climate in which I live! She also designs patterns that are sized from children's sizes all the way through plus sizes: a great value when purchasing a pattern. I knit her Whisper Cardigan last year (pictured below), and have her Featherweight Cardigan hibernating on the needles right now--I'll probably pick that up again this summer.
I hope I have inspired you and maybe introduced you to a designer you hadn't discovered yet! Who is your favorite designer?