Thursday, December 9, 2010

Brr...Scarf weather and how to make a crochet pattern map

For those of you that don't know me personally:

I live in Alaska.

Have you ever been to Alaska? You really should visit.

In the summer.

Don't come now. You'll freeze before you even step off of the plane.

As I type this, the temperature is sitting at a nice cozy -27 degrees F. That's -33 degrees C, in case you were wondering and didn't want to do math.

It is this time of year that I wonder to myself, "WHY?"

But the silver lining to this frozen ice cloud is that this just lasts for a few weeks at a time. And if you really want to put things in perspective, we haven't even hit our cold snap yet. That comes in the end of January.

Seems kind of needless to say this now, but I will any way:

This is perfect scarf weather.

Well, as long as the scarf isn't the only thing you're wearing, that is.

Here's my scarf:

It's a prototype of one of my many ninja related ideas. I call it a prototype because I always make up a project like this and then fiddle with it until I like the end result.

My method for mapping out a pattern just takes an idea, some graph paper (or blank paper and a ruler), and a pen or pencil.

For instance, take my scarf. I made the ninja heads first and then made the rest. My stitch pattern map for the ninja heads looks like this:

Except I did mine by hand so it's a lot messier! I also used a different count--the numbers are there for show and not function. This pattern map would make a very small ninja.

I used a simple single crochet stitch and took it row by row working the ends in as I went. Remember, your pattern map is written in pen or pencil--not stone. You can change it up as you go based on how the piece is taking shape. 

Once the whole thing was done, I single crocheted around the outside to give the piece a clean, round look. And since I worked the ends into the back of the piece, it made the scarf single sided.

Okay, I had no idea what a pain in the ass a single sided scarf can be until I wore this one around for a little while. I am constantly turning the faces so they are right side out. I'd much rather make the pattern double sided to avoid that altogether! My solutions so far have left tons of loose ends to work in later on, so I'm still in the figure it out stage of things with the pattern.

Happy pattern mapping!!

Stop back by and share what you've made in your free time. I'd love to see!

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