We all do it, it is one of the reasons Ravelry exists. We have a list of things we wish to make; be it for ourselves or our loved ones and that list is long.
If you are like me it is also quite complex because I NEVER knit to gauge, for anything. This means I need to adjust almost every single pattern I use.
So I am going to show you the tools I use while knitting that isn’t needles and string.
Firstly I start with what is usually considered a big profanity in our little group a
gauge swatch little square of TEST knitting.
I cast on 10 more stitches than the
gauge pattern suggests should take up 10 cm or 4 inches. I then knit in garter stitch for 5 rows, then switch to a stocking stitch with a 5 stitch garter stitch border.
I will knit as many rows as I cast on stitches, then I will switch back to garter stitch for a further 5 rows, (give or take, depends on where I’m knitting and what’s on the telly.)
Now I take me
gauge swatch test knitting and count using the handy little gadget pictured above, it highlights the stitches and rows so I get a fairly accurate count.
Next comes the fun part, the math. Using what I get from the little square I take the pattern and convert it to what I need.
My chicken scratch for all to see.
I read the pattern, channelling my inner Dumbledore, and figure out where measurements are needed. (It is usually very easy because a typical pattern will give multiple numbers for all the sizes the pattern accommodates.) I then substitute my own numbers in and transcribe them in to my knitting journal.
My knitting journal is a simple moleskine with a grid inside, and in it I put any changes to patterns that I make, charts I need, what row I am on, and all the information a busy knitter needs to know when they pick up a pattern again after putting it down three months ago.
Grab one at Amazon*
Now, I don’t transcribe the ENTIRE pattern into my book, just my adjustments. So I usually have a printed copy of the pattern washi taped into the book. The pages get a bit beaten up and usually get thrown out when the pattern is complete. but I keep all my important stuff in the book itself.
Now all of this can be done on Ravelry, but I make changes on the go and I like the feel of paper and pencil so this works best for me.
But this isn’t all I do.
I also use my trusty Filofax* and the inserts from the Make Your Shining Year Planner, *(or for those of you not interested in product placement, my daily diary).
Inside this fantastic little book is where my life gets sorted, and in it I log when I start a project. I use the sweetest little planner stickers from SymposiPress, an Etsy store that does sweet watercolour stickers for your planner.
The stickers are so fully of whimsy and so gentle I can’t help but love them. They also come with a CAST ON sticker, then an image of the object and a blank space so you can track how far you are on your project. Then an adorable little FINISHED! sticker.
I don’t know if it something for those of us who got stickers at school to signify a job well done but the level of satisfaction when placing a FINISHED sticker in my planner is close to the satisfaction of finding that perfect rainbow. (Which I am still hunting for.)
So how do you track your knitting progress? What about changes you make to the patterns?
Do you know a great planner sticker store? Let me know.
*these links are affiliate links.