Friday, 18 March 2011

I didn't hear from anyone who wanted to stand up for all the knitters who like following patterns. I like to follow a pattern too. I do it when I'm learning something new, when I want to relax, when I've been asked to make what's on the photo (how else does someone choose a sweater for mom to make), when I like the design and won't be designing anything close to that garment myself.

A knitting pattern can be likened to a recipe. Sometimes you just want to follow it exactly and get a good result. You know it's going to be a good meal. I find it's really relaxing to follow a pattern. And knowing that it's going to turn out really becomes important when you are knitting something for someone else.

The book we're doing is like a recipe. The first section will the the main recipe. The second section will be saying you might throw this in or substitute this ingredient for that ingredient and it will be slightly different and good. If you sub in chicken for beef in your dish it's altered without too much change in the preparation of the meal. We tried all the substitutions and they all work, there will be photographic evidence. Then we get to the last section where the substitutions are a little more involved and may hopefully lead you to try even more substitutions which take you further away from the basic recipe. I like this gradual approach. The basic recipe is still there and can be worked over and over until you feel the urge or occasion to try one of the subs again.

A sub into the basic cardigan.


  1. I am knitting many of the samples and loving it. I really like pattern variations, that is the reason why I acccepted your invite to participate. Ribbiting and re-knitting is a little bit overwhelming but the final results are totally satisfying and the journey is interesting to say the least.

  2. Your method of basic recipe followed by variations really helps knitters to become more intuitive. Great job.

  3. With your help, maybe I'll be more comfortable straying from the patterns. And I can always ask you (or Ann, British Knitter extraordinaire) when I get stuck. Looking forward to the book, Deb.

  4. I agree that's it can be relaxing to follow a pattern, just go along for the ride, and end up with the perfect garment---except it almost never works out that way for me. Either I need to make major alterations because I'm short, or the pattern is horribly written, or maybe it's just missing little details, or...well, you get the picture.


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