A word or two about patterns…

 This is completely my opinion and you can agree or disagree, I really honestly don’t care where you stand on this issue. I am secure in my opinons, and like discussion…so disagree or agree away.

I’m beginning to write patterns very differently than the “industry standard.” I have my reasons, and let me explain them to you.

Most of the crochet patterns printed post war, excepting magic crochet, are written akin to knitting patterns. Ok, this makes sense to some degree if you are a knitter.

Do you realise how many of us are not cross crafters? AND, even if you are a cross crafter, it doesn’t mean you do both equally well. I can knit a swatch, but in the time it takes me to knit a 2×2″ swatch I can have ten done in crochet. (Ok, I crochet really really quickly!).

I would NEVER presuppose to say I was a knitting expert. I am a crocheter, who can knit a swatch. Do you see what I am getting at?

Because of the old bias, that thank heavens is FINALLY lifting, a lot of crochet  was considered polished if it was written up like knitting patterns. Folks, that’s a recipe for disaster.

Crochet patterns for garments, especially, need to be written dimensionally. You still make a swatch, you still watch your gauge, mainly because no one shares the same tension!But, it’s important to remember that we can work in inches and cms.

I never have understood why the dimensions weren’t included. Sure you can say that 20 stitches and 10 rows equals four inches, but to go for 15 inches  up a sweater back do you realise the math involved? Heck just tell me the sweater width needs to be x and the length needs to be y, and a good gauge needs to be z. I’m off an running.

Why? Because, like many CROCHETERS I didn’t learn to read patterns until I wanted to write them. I have always crocheted by eyeballing it, and making it look the way I want it to look.

Ladies and gentlemen, please please please, don’t listen to fuss budgets who tell you it has to be a certain way. The reason I can make funky funky stuff, and cool designs, and stitches that I haven’t named, or seen named is because no one ever told me I couldn’t do it.

If it has integrity, fits together, and looks good, who’s to say don’t do it?

What am I doing about this? Well, I write with a mix, I still put a stitch count for those who are diehards, and dimensions for people who sew or understand that line of thinking.

But here’s the real deal…if you don’t read patterns,  you’re still awesome. You are real, you make things just as nicely as those who do read patterns… I felt like many crocheters do that I wasn’t all that good because I hadn’t made anything from a pattern…what never crossed my mind, was this: For all those years I was making MY designs, not someone elses. Hmmm…now that’s food for thought.

Of course sometimes someone’s designs are fun to make…or change or embellish…so if that’s your goal (as mine was) then learn to read them…a good way to start learning? Get a magic crochet book, it uses symbols, then try a written out pattern.


About thegoldenme

I love crochet and hand-spinning. I am visually impaired, and thus extremely tactile. I love texture and color, and creating things that feel good, and look good has made life richer and warmer.
This entry was posted in Articles, Cool Stuff, crafts, Creativity, Crochet, Free Form Crochet, Funky Fashion, Handcrafted, Handcrafts, Handspinning, handspun yarn, patterns, Spinning, thoughts, Traditional Arts, traditional crafts, WA, Washington State, Yarn. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to A word or two about patterns…

  1. trinichiqn says:

    I agree with you. I don’t knit and less than half of a pattern is understandable. I usually eyeball and figure out what I want and go from there too. Sometime I watch the intended finished product and figure out how to get there, It may not be the same but once it looks enough like it I’m happy, like a knock-off red carpet dress.

  2. Sandra says:

    I agree with, however I feel I may be the odd ball (nothing new with me). Although I can knit (sort of)I’m a die hard crochetier. I’ve used all methods, written, dementional and symbol and I like them all. However, they all seem to have a place in the grand scheam of things. I’m in the process now of writting down my own patterns. This is a new challenge. As you I’ve been creating from others patterns and modifying as I go along for years but never wrote it down. Now I’ve been asked for patterns. Good luck and I hope to start seeing more of your patterns soon.

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