Thursday, October 23, 2008

Lazy, lazy, lazy

While I *have* been lazy, not updating my blog very often, today's blog is about another kind of lazy person... the lazy knitting pattern writer.

I am sick to death of reading patterns that go something like this:

Row 1: K5, P4, SSK, YO, P4, K5
Row 2: P all
Row 3: K4, P6, SSK, YO, P6, K4
Row 4: P all
Row 5: Same as Row 3
Row 6: Same as Row 2
Row 7: Same as Row 1

Is it really that damn difficult to write the actual stitches over? Or *copy and paste* them?? If I print my pattern, and the page happens to cut off in the middle of your little "listing" I'm going to end up flipping papers over and over and over. I shouldn't have to print my own set of cheat cards in order to make your pattern usable.

Another example of lazy pattern writers is the people who excessively use "AND at the same time...". For example, a pattern I recently attempted which was a snug-fitting vest/top in a famous knitting book, should have been a fairly simple project. Oh heck no. Instead of writing line by line instructions, they tell you to knit X number of stitches in a rib pattern. Oh, but by the way you should be decreasing every six rows *here* and oh, by the way, please leave a panel here in stockinette. Never mind that the two last-minute additional instructions start to conflict and cross over each other, do it anyway. Oh, and by the way, you'll need to start increasing over *here*. Just FYI. Oh, PS. Did you remember to change needle sizes in the middle? Oops, start over please.

I am not a lazy knitter. I *do* read through my patterns completely before casting on. But reading it when you just have a piece of paper in your hand, and reading it while trying to actually do what they say to do are two very different things. Stitch markers flying everywhere, three different strands of yarn for those pesky color changes... practice is much different than theory.

If you write patterns, please help preserve my sanity... write out every line of instructions. If your stitch pattern reverses itself in the middle and starts repeating the first six lines in reverse order, write them out that way. Don't just use "ditto". Or whatever.

If you have a complex series of decreases, some starting in several different rows, please for the love of all, make a damn chart. Or put the decreases in the lines, not in some lame "PS" maneuver four paragraphs later. I don't care if your publisher told you to cut 14 pages, drop one of the patterns instead of making all the existing ones a muddled, confusing mess. Or better yet, drop some of those crappy B&W photos that do nobody any good anyway.


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