Category Archives: Crochet

FO and a little rant about patterns

I didn’t mean for so much time to pass before posting again. I’ve been a bit busy. I had some heavy-duty housecleaning to do, a visitor to entertain, and a pretty hefty book to read aloud with my daughter.

Finished Weasley SleevesI finshied my Weasley Sleeves but ran out of time to get them attached to a housecoat or sweater in time to wear them to the launch party for the new Harry Potter book. It was a shame, because I’ve little doubt that I would have been competition for the adult winner of the costume contest.

Oh well. I’ll fix them up for Halloween and then detach them and put them on a jacket for the little Grump. She really loves them and thinks that they will look extremely funky. (She wants them because they’re so different than anything anyone else is wearing. She doesn’t realize it, but it seems that the 70s styles are coming back!)

I didn’t follow the pattern as written. I omitted some rows to shorten the sleeves. It seems that the pattern was designed for someone with much longer arms. I have what I call “gator arms”… much shorter than the average. Fortunately, the pattern lends itself to that sort of modification.

One thing that bugged me about this pattern was that the designer assumed that everyone who purchased the pattern would either have a color printer or would have the pattern up on a monitor. The labels for each of the rows was listed according to the color, and the label was in the color that was supposed to be used. In most cases, this wasn’t a big deal, but it was a real PITB for the lighter colored rows. On my black and white printer, those lighter colored labels were almost white.

And now for my little rant…

I like supporting new pattern designers. I’ve been known to purchase a slightly better pattern from an independent designer even though I have a very similar pattern in a book or magazine. I appreciate the spirit of innovation and admire their craftiness.

But it makes me absolutely nutty when I pay for a pattern, and it’s riddled with bugs or poorly written. It makes me even nuttier when a pattern maker could make the pattern more clear with a picture or diagram but don’t.

Digital cameras are cheap. You don’t need to be Margaret Bourke-White to capture an image that will make the pattern more clear. Current tools make it easy to insert images into text documents. So why not use them as much as possible?

Judicious use of images would have improved this pattern 150%. The pattern used a wide variety of stitch combinations, and there were so many cases when I didn’t know if I was doing a stitch right. If there had been a picture of what the pattern should look like, it would have saved me quite a few hours on the project. (In one case, I ripped back three rows after figuring out that what I thought that I had been instructed to do just didn’t work out.) For those of us who are crochet infrequently, this would be a lifesaver.

I paid $7.50 for this pattern via electronic download. It was a fun, but it was also frustrating. I’ve paid much less for better patterns. That’s almost the price of a book! Frankly, I’m more than a wee bit disappointed.

Tomorrow (or the next day), I’ll fill you in on the projects that have captured my attention since I finished the sleeves.