How to create a crochet pattern part two
Last time we talked about the various steps it took to create a crochet pattern in How to create a crochet pattern. This time we’re going to take the basic steps we learned and analyze why we need them and what to do with them.
I’m not going to go all the way back to the first step, I’m going to start with step 4 – Stitches and Material, so we can dig deeper into what we want to achieve. Because I’m creating a pattern for my daughter’s dress to be worn to a wedding I have an idea of how I’d like her to look. I want the dress to be comfortable so her silhouette is easy and open. My sketch is very crude since I’m no artist, but it gives me the basic idea of what I want and a place to start when it comes to measurements and gauge. First considering the stitch is important because different stitches work up differently when it comes to measuring. So, before you work with gauge you need to have an idea of the stitch you want to use. Because this dress is meant to be worn in Summer I want a stitch that allows breathing but gives good coverage. The stitch will always vary with what you want your material to do.
I also take some time to think about the material because seasonally there are different materials that are better than others. The yarn I’ll be using is Debbie Bliss Pima (discontinued) which is a Bamboo/wool mix with wool being the lesser of the two materials. Because I know that bamboo has a beautiful drape I feel confident in my choice. However, I won’t know for sure until I get into the gauge.
So, what I want you to remember here is when you’re writing a pattern the material you use is important in order to give the right feel, drape and texture to your completed item. Before you settle on any one yarn, check the gauge. . .
Step 5 – Gauge, I touched on gauge very briefly the last time, but I want to elaborate now. Once I decided on the style of my daughter’s dress I took her measurements. If you’re making a pattern for commercial use, you can find a size chart online that will give you a place to start when it comes to sizing. Here’s a quick example of one I found (http://quoteko.com/holiday-clothing-sizing-chart-kinds-toddler-boys.html). However, like I said I simply measured my daughter and moved from there.
Gauge is, simply put, the number of stitches in a certain number of inches. I’m sure you can guess why that’s important but I’m going to tell you anyway. Once I’ve measured my daughter, I create a swatch of material from the yarn I’m going to use in the suggested hook size. Usually I work up 20 stitches and 20 rows (some people cut the swatch, I don’t I just measure then pull it out and reuse, unless I need to wet the swatch to determine “blocked” size) Then I take the measuring tape and measure the number of rows and stitches there are in an inch. That way, when you take the measurements that you have you can easily determine how many stitches you need to get the width you need and how many rows to get the length. Knowing that information makes it possible to size your pattern accordingly.
[wp_ad_camp_5]Step 6 – Start your project – After I’ve selected my stitches, materials and measured my gauge I jump right in! Now, since we’re writing a pattern starting your project will be a bit different. You’ll need to write out everything you do.
Start writing your pattern:
- Write out your list of materials, if you add more then add them to the list as you go
- Write the abbreviations to the stitches you’ll be using, put in explanations if the stitches aren’t typical stitches
- Write out your gauge information
- Then begin with the first step and at each step or interval write out what you’re doing.
The reason I encourage writing as you go is if you wait until the end to write things down you’ll forget small steps in-between. Remember, the person that picks up the pattern may not be experienced and they are looking to you to offer all the steps as clearly as possible in order to complete the project. So, it’s very important to write as you go. If you find it too difficult to stop and write things down, use a tape recorder or a voice recorder on your phone to speak the instructions then you can go back and type it later. What’s important is that you get all the instructions in.
Today we talked about:
- Figuring out which stitches you want to use depending on how you want your piece to fit
- Figuring out what materials to use (wool, cotton, rayon, silk etc) depending on how you want the piece to feel and drape
- Figuring out your gauge so you can easily know how many stitches you need to get the right size
- Writing out your list of materials, stitches used and all instructions for the pattern as you go
Awesome! You’re well on your way!
Next week, we’ll talk about sizing and assembly! In the meantime, do you have questions? Come by the Facebook Page and ask, I’ll be more than happy to help you on your journey!
Are you creating a pattern? What are you making? We’d love to hear about it in the comments! 😀 CLICK HERE: Part 3
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