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Of course, many of these knitters chose their own colors for their projects, and others used entirely different yarn than the pattern called for. Still other brave souls made more extensive alterations to the patterns—from replacing the star motif on the wrist cuffs with little Pacman figures to lengthening the Under the Hoodie sweater so that it was less cropped, making a mini version of Meema’s Felted Marsupial Tote for a toddler, shortening the extra-long sleeves on To Dye For, and adding shaping to the loose, oversized Skully sweater.
It was clear that at least a few knitters were ready to look at patterns, not as a be-all and end-all to their knitting projects, but rather as a starting point from which to make their knitting dreams come true. And from the questions and enthusiastic comments about these revised SnB projects that were being posted on knitters’ blogs, it seemed that many other Stitch ’n Bitchers were hungry to do the same, if only they knew how.
I also found, unfortunately, that some folks who had completed projects from that first book were less than pleased with their results. One knitter discovered that the Skully sweater was much too loose and oversized for her to wear; yet another, posing in her newly completed Skully, proved that the sweater fit her just fine. So why did one knitter get such unhappy results, while another knitter didn’t? I realized that if knitters could figure out from a pattern how a sweater might fit them before they made it, they’d encounter less frustration. Better yet, they’d know how to pick the right size to knit from the list of available sizes.
In fact, it seemed that all across the country, a nation of knitters—both brand new and more seasoned—were beginning to get restless. They were crying out for knowledge. They wanted to have the power to really understand what it was they were making, so that they could take their knitting to the next level, and make changes if they wanted to. They yearned to be free to use a yarn of their own choosing, whether or not it matched the gauge stipulated in the pattern. They longed to be able to make simple alterations to patterns—lengthening a body here, shortening a sleeve there. And they were itching to make projects that would fit and flatter their bodies. They didn’t want to spend countless hours working on sweaters only to have them be more appropriate for an elephant or an Olson twin than themselves.
In this chapter I’ll try to arm you with some of that knowledge. I’ll help you understand the secret language of knitting patterns and tell you a few things you need to think about when you’re choosing a different yarn for a project. I’ll show you how—with the miracle of math—you can rewrite a pattern to use thicker or thinner yarn than the pattern calls for or make simple alterations so that it will fit you better. I’ll even explain the mystery of pattern fit and sizing, so that you can choose the correct size to knit from the get-go. Finally, I’ll teach you how to change particular details of a sweater—like switch a turtleneck to a V-neck or replace a ribbed edge with a rolled one. Eventually, you’ll be changing so many things about a pattern—using thicker yarn, shortening the sleeves, popping on a crew neck, lengthening the body, adding a different edging, replacing a picture of a rock star with a picture of your doggie—that it may become an entirely different project altogether. In fact, you may have changed it so much that you will have practically designed your own sweater. With a bit more practice, and a bit more willingness to take the leap and depart from following patterns to the letter, you’ll be ready to do just that.
Very few of the patterns in this book were made by folks who are knitwear designers by trade. Most of them were contributed by knitters who were just brave (or stubborn) enough to get an idea into their head for a project and not let go until they had figured out how to make it. Soon you’ll be one of them too, or maybe you already are. And perhaps it will be one of your patterns that will appear in a future Stitch ’n Bitch book, for others to knit, and, of course, change completely to suit their whim and fantasy.
So what are you waiting for? It’s time to get your knit on.
|Part I||A Knit At My Way||1|
|How to Make any Knitting Pattern Work With Your Yarn, Your Gauge, Your Body, and Your Style|
|Part II||The Pattenns||31|
|Scarves, Hats, and Mittens|
|Scarf It Up|
|Yo, Drop It!||34|
|Mom's Sophisticated Scarf||37|
|Butterflies Are Free||40|
|Bzzz Hat for Queen Bees||44|
|Valentine's Hat and Mittens||54|
|Head Huggers: Neckwarmer and Earwarmer||58|
|Headline News: Cabled Newsboy Cap||66|
|Later 'Gator Mitts||70|
|Sweaters and Ponchos|
|Fairly Easy Fair Isle||82|
|Lucky: Clover Lace Wrap||102|
|That Seventies Poncho||114|
|Sexy Summer Knits|
|Mud Flap Girl Tank Top||132|
|Quick and Dirty: 2-Needle Fishnet Stockings||136|
|Itsy-Bitsy Teeny-Weeny Purple Polka-Dot Tankini||140|
|Accidentally On Purpose: Drop Stitch Vest||144|
|Totally Tubular: Miniskirt/Boob Tube||148|
|Legs, Bags, and Beyond|
|Candy Stripers: Messenger and Laptop Bags||152|
|Letter Have It||158|
|Om Yoga Mat Bag||168|
|Going Out with a Bag||178|
|The Bead Goes On: Beaded Wrist Cuffs||182|
|Roller Girl Legwarmers||186|
|Felted Furry Foot Warmers||192|
|Hurry Up Spring Armwarmers||196|
|Belt de Jour||200|
|Babies, Dogs, and Cats|
|Li'l Devil Pants||204|
|Baby's First Tattoo||208|
|One-Hour Baby Booties||216|
|Gifts and More|
|Knit Your Own Rock Star||234|
|Knit My Ride: Fuzzy Dice and Steering Wheel Cover||240|
|Two for Tea||250|
|Part III||The Knitty-Ghitty|
|A Refresher Course||253|
|Yarn Store Nation||270|
Posted March 4, 2005
This book is for anyone who has ever seen a pattern and wanted to change the size or use a different weight yarn. In terms that a non-math person like myself can understand, she explains how to convert patterns to fit your needs. Many of the patterns aren't my style, but the technique tips alone are well worth the price.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 24, 2005
Posted January 4, 2005
I bought this book in late November and have already completed six of the projects, started a seventh and bought yarn for two more! It would be worth the purchase price just for the guidance on how to change patterns (I change patterns with astonishing regularity, not always with the best results, so I appreciated the guidance!) and the beehive hat, but I love almost every pattern in this book. They're unusual but mostly useful, and the not-useful ones are still a blast.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 23, 2004
Luv this book...if your a Debbie Stoller fan and have been eagerly awaiting something new to hit the shelves-her it is! This was well worth the cash...just recieved it in the mail last night and flipped through it several times. More cool projects and lots of pics of other B&Stitchers from across the country. Def add this to your knitting library if you define knitting as a cool pastime!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 5, 2008
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Posted February 15, 2010
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Posted December 26, 2011
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