Saturday, May 2, 2015

Knitting Patterns are a Tool and A Granny Shrug

I am here today to set you free and help you realize that a pattern is a tool, your tool, do what you need to do, to make it easier for you to understand and use. :)
I wanted to share how I made the directions for knitting my Astor Jacket work for me. You see, when I was knitting on my Astor Jacket, I found part of the directions difficult to use and a bit confusing. One issue that I encountered was that I needed two different pages at the same time! 
This meant I was constantly flipping back and forth, and back and forth, between the two pages. I had a paper clip on the pages, because one page was the first page and the other needed was the third page. Even then it was still aggravating.
What I did to remedy that problem was that I took the two pages, ripped them up and cried!  Hahaha! Nooooo, I didn't really.  ;)
What we have to remember is that the pattern is a tool, our tool, your tool, my tool.  Make it work for you. For this pattern, I was able to fold each page in half lengthwise, lay them on my copier/printer, so that the areas I needed could be on one page. For another pattern, I may have to fold the directions differently to do this, but for Astor that was my solution.  You see before you the one page.
The next issue that I had with the directions had to do with the cable pattern on the center fronts.
On the right hand side of the paper below, you see the cable pattern itself. Then on the left side of the page you see the two rows, that you repeat over and over, for the remaining stitches on the front. This actually was part of what I was having to flip back and forth for.
I decided to color code my rows. When I worked the orange row, on the left, I knew to go to the orange row for the cable pattern and then again for the yellow highlighted rows.
I also, write on my patterns, any hints to make knitting easier. That is all the scribble that you see. This pattern is written saying, "make left front same as right front, reversing all shaping." So, many of the scribbles, are helps for that. I marked which cable row, I added the pocket, which cable row that I started the armhole, that sort of thing. Basically, any thing that I thought would make life easier.
After all knitting is to be fun, right?  And relaxing, right??? 
While I was working on knitting my Astor, I would put it down for an easier project. That was my Granny Shrug.  This is a free pattern that can be found here.

I decided to use stash yarn and I had several balls of Lion Brand Thick and Quick hanging around. Because my yarn was thicker than the pattern designer's, my shrug is much bigger, which I figured it would be, and that is what I had wanted. 
The idea of using up my stash didn't really work, though.  I ran out of yarn and had to go purchase more to finish the shrug! So, now I have the same amount left in my stash........


  1. Great info on how you make the pattern work for you!

  2. Yes, Thank you for all these little tips. It's helping me not tear up the patterns. Lol. But I loved the tip, to mark your row for the second section I have to do on the jacket. Thank you for this tip and all the tips that you pass on..

  3. I love the granny square jacket as well. Great colors, would love to see it.