Starting a new pattern can be so exciting and it’s easy and natural to have the desire to jump in and go. However, it’s worth your time to give your pattern a little run through before diving in.
1. Make sure you have all the required materials and whatever else will make your life easier while working on your project. Yarn, hook, scissors, stitch makers, etc.
2. Go over all the stitches used within the pattern. Make sure you are familiar with them and double check to make sure there aren’t any stitch modifications. For example, the number of “yarn overs” in a bobble stitch can sometimes change depending on the pattern and designer. Also, if there is a stitch that you don’t yet know, check for a tutorial from the designer or head over to YouTube to find a video.
3. Speaking of stitches, pay attention as to whether the terms are written is US or UK versions. The stitches are the same but the terms are a little different. I have a handy little chart for you if you need a refresher! Stitch Conversion Chart
4. Check the pattern for alternate sizes within the written instructions and highlight the sections you are working on in the size you need. Some patterns have stitch counts shown in brackets throughout and these represent the different sizes available. It can be very easy to accidently switch over to a different size halfway through. Pay close attention and colour coordinate the size notes throughout the pattern to keep you on track. For example: child size – highlight yellow. Youth size – highlight blue
5. If something doesn’t make sense to you in the pattern, check for feedback or reviews on the pattern. Maybe someone has the same question and an answer as been provided. Alternately, don’t ever feel shy about contacting a designer for clarification.
6. If required, check your gauge. This will save you a lot of heartache in the end, especially if you spend time working on a beautiful cardigan and the sizing is off upon completion.
Once you have gone over your pattern and feel comfortable with the instructions, grab your hook and yarn because it’s time to crochet! Yay!