THE PEOPLE BEHIND RADÅM MAGAZINE
I'm Zanete Hussain and I call myself a knitwear designer. If someone had told me a few years ago that knitting would be my career, I would have laughed out loud. My entire professional life of 15 years up until about 4 years ago was in software development. I had worked as a programmer, architect, team leader, analyst, product manager, you name it. But from an early age, I loved various arts and crafts, such as playing piano and all the needlework on this planet. In the end knitting took over as the one skill I mastered and became the biggest passion.
4 years ago, while waiting for the birth of my second child, I found myself with a lot more time on my hands and rediscovered knitting in the age of YouTube and Instagram. It was like a whole new world: amazing needles and beautiful, high quality yarns were now accessible to me, I learnt of new cast-on and bind-off techniques, and new methods of constructing garments, etc. I was so enthralled that in the end I could no longer return to the field of technology.
Knitting patterns were a new discovery for me, too. I first saw a pattern when I picked up a knitting book in a yarn shop in England. The pattern looked so complicated that the first impulse was to close the book and pretend nothing happened. That's what I did.
At the same time, one of my college friends kept asking me to tell her how I knitted things I had posted on Instagram. I knew how to knit, but to explain to someone else what and how to do to get to the finished piece is a completely different matter. But upon realising that most people wouldn't knit anything without a pattern, except for maybe a straight scarf in garter stitch, I decided to learn how to create knitting patterns so that I could communicate with other knitters about how to make my designs. The response has been unexpectedly and overwhelmingly positive, and I continue this passion to this day.
My name is Anete Barina. I have been hooked on needlework since I can remember. At school I attended all the clubs I could, I was active and creative, and even played the violin. We were taught crafts at school and I remember never having enough time to finish the work during the classes, so I spent a lot of time on crafts at home, too. I was so interested in how to knit a sock as a young girl, I sat for hours at my neighbour while she patiently explained.
Eventually I studied to become a cultural and social anthropologist, but ended up working in management at a large company. I found time to knit a pair of socks every six months. I started knitting a lot more when I was expecting my first son, I wanted to dress my baby in handknits. But once he was born, I was too busy taking care of everything, as well as continuing my studies at the same time, so there wasn't much left for knitting.
I restarted knitting again when I was expecting my twin daughters. It was then I became interested in knitting as a "science", in a completely new way, where I continuously learn and develop new techniques by knitting from patterns. When my twin girls were four months old, during sleepless nights I came up with the idea of the Joy To Knit (Radītprieks) knitting diary, because I struggled to keep my notes structured and understandable. It was especially relevant for me at the time, because I had twins and I often needed to repeat the same garment twice. The brands Radītprieks (in Latvian) and Joy to knit (in English) was born with an online shop where I also offer various accessories for knitting.
I have also created some knitting patterns myself and am very glad that my childhood passion has turned into a hobby and a small business at the same time.
Zanete and I crossed paths in 2019, when she published her first knitting pattern, and I won it in a giveaway. Slowly we became real knitting friends and collaborated on a few projects. When I created Raditprieks, she helped me with advice, and we realised that we really like working together.
It was a casual chat about knitting magazines where one thing led to another and we decided to try our hand at creating our own trendy knitting magazine in Latvian. Since that day, we have been working hand in hand on this project every free moment. A year later, we shared the first issue with joy and excitement!