November Designer Newsletter: Indie Design Gift-A-Long (GAL) 2018!


Hi everyone, and happy November! My monthly designer newsletter went out yesterday, and in it I provided some information on an event many of you will be interested in: the annual Indie Design Gift-A-Long (or “GAL”). Signups run between November 14th and 16th, so be sure to check out all the information before then so you don’t miss out.

And as always, I included my tech editing availability for the coming month. Get in touch soon if you’ve got a pattern nearly ready for editing!

The Indie Design Gift-A-Log (GAL) 2018

What is the Indie Design Gift-A-Long?

From the GAL Ravelry group:

“What is Gift-A-Long? It’s a multi-designer promotion to help you kick your holiday gift-making into high gear!

The Indie Design Gift-A-Long is a 6 week long KAL/CAL of holiday gifts made from patterns designed by a rather extensive list of independent designers.”

Basically, participants knit patterns by participating designers, share and chat about their GAL projects on Ravelry and social media, and are entered to win tons of great prizes.

I have participated in the GAL for the past 2 years as a designer, and it’s been such a positive experience.

What does being a “Participating Designer” entail, and what are the benefits?

Basically, you offer between 10 and 20 of your self-published patterns at a discount during the first week of the GAL, donate coupon codes for free pattern downloads to be used as prizes, and generally participate and join in the hype and fun.

Regarding the benefits, it’s a great way to expose your work to more knitters, build your audience, and enjoy a little boost in pattern sales. Plus, it’s a lot of fun. Having enjoyed participating in previous years, I would be devastated to miss out!

Here are a few stats from last year to give you an idea of the scope of the GAL (taken from this thread on Ravelry):

Check out this thread for lots more stats and fun facts about last year’s GAL.

How can I sign up?

The GAL doesn’t begin until November 23rd for regular participants, but chat among organizers and designers in the (impeccably-run, incredibly informative) GAL Planning Ravelry group is in full swing. You can find all important dates, rules, and announcements in this thread. The most important thing to note right now is that if you wish to participate as a designer, the signup window is small and the requirements are both specific and strictly-enforced.

In order to be included as a participating designer, you MUST sign up between 10 am (US EST) on Wednesday, November 14th and 10 am (US EST) on Friday, November 16th. See this post for all the details on how to sign up and when. There is even a checklist you can use to make sure you are ready to go when sign ups open:

While it’s important to read and follow all the rules, don’t be overwhelmed! The three basic things you must do before you can register are:

  1. Have 10 self-published patterns in your Ravelry shop;
  2. Set up the discount code for the sale period and your individual prize codes; and,
  3. Set up your GAL bundle.

As long as you do these three things (following the guidelines and tutorials here) before November 14th, you’ll be all ready to pull the trigger on signup day.

If you have any questions about the GAL, please don’t hesitate to send me an email at allison at kniterations dot ca. I am not involved with planning the event, but having participated in previous years, I’m sure I can help (or at least point you in the direction of the folks who can).

Tech Editing Availability

I have the following tech editing spaces remaining for November:

November 5th – 9th: full!
November 12th – 16th: 1 space remaining!
November 19th – 23rd: 4 spaces
November 26th – 30th: 5 spaces

Send me an email (allison at kniterations dot ca) if you’d like to reserve a spot!

– Allison


Pattern re-release: Powder


Chunky, soft, and quick to knit, Powder features Fisherman’s Rib stitch, which puffs up the already plump yarn. The ribbed stitch pattern alternates to create a natural brim in the fabric. This hat can be styled as a slouch or a beanie – and don’t forget the pom pom!

This hat is worked in the round from the bottom up.


One size (Adult)


51 cm/20” circumference and 23.5 cm/9.25” tall


Approximately 160 m/175 yd super bulky weight yarn

Shown in Cascade Yarns Boliviana Bulky (100% merino wool; 160 m/175 yd per 200 g/7 oz skein) in colour Silver (07); 1 skein.


One each 40 cm/16” circular needle and set of DPNs*, size 8 mm/US 11 (or size needed to obtain gauge)

*Or preferred style for small circumference knitting in the round


8 stitches & 24 rounds* = 10 cm/4″ in Fisherman’s Rib, after blocking

*When counting rounds in Fisherman’s Rib, one visible round is formed over two worked rounds. Therefore, each visible, counted round counts as two rounds for gauge.


Stitch markers (1 unique, 3 matching), tapestry needle




Price: $7.00 CAD 15% off for re-release weekend only! Use coupon code POWDER. Offer ends Monday, October 22nd at midnight PDT. promo has ended

Available through my Ravelry store or directly via PayPal by clicking the “buy now” button below.

Kniterations is on Patreon!become_a_patron_button

Pattern re-release: Frost


The Frost mittens, inspired by classic Scandinavian motifs, feature a large Nordic star, bands of colourwork, and a lining for extra warmth. Worked in Icelandic Lettlopi, these mittens will keep your fingers toasty from the winter solstice to the spring equinox.

These mittens are worked from the cuff up with thumb gussets. The outer mitten is worked first, then stitches are picked up around the inside of the cuff and the lining is worked in the opposite direction. Once completed, the lining is tucked into the outer mitten.



Adult S/M [Adult M/L] to fit 19 [21] cm/7.5 [8.25]” hand circumference as measured at the knuckles

Sample shown is Adult M/L

Finished Dimensions

18.5 [20.5] cm/7.25 [8]” inner circumference, 21 [23] cm/8.25 [9]” outer circumference, 21 [23.5] cm/8.25 [9.25]” hand length, 26.5 [29] cm/10.5 [11.5]” total length

Choose a size with a finished inner circumference approximately 0.5 cm/0.25” smaller than the wearer’s actual hand circumference. This ensures the lining will fit snugly.


Worsted weight yarn in the following amounts:

C1 (blue): 124 [150] m/136 [165] yd
C2 (beige): 61 [73] m/67 [80] yd
C3 (red): 97 [117] m/107 [128] yd

Shown in Ístex Léttlopi (100% Icelandic wool; 100 m/109 yd per 50g/1.75 oz ball) in colours C1: Ocean Blue (9419), C2: Light Beige Heather (0086), C3: Crimson Red (9434)


One set 4 mm/US 6 needles*
One set 5 mm/US 8 needles*
Or sizes needed to obtain gauge

*Either one set of DPNs, two circular needles, or one long circular needle, in each size, as you prefer for small circumference knitting in the round.


23 stitches & 24 rounds = 10 cm/4″ in Frost pattern, after wet blocking, on larger needles
20 stitches & 29 rounds = 10 cm/4” in Stockinette Stitch, after wet blocking, on smaller needles


Stitch markers (1 unique, 4 matching), removable stitch markers (3), waste yarn or stitch holder, tapestry needle




Price: $7.00 CAD 15% off for re-release weekend only! Use coupon code FROST. Offer ends Monday, October 1st at midnight PDT. promo has ended

Available through my Ravelry store or directly via PayPal by clicking the “buy now” button below.

Kniterations is on Patreon!become_a_patron_button

New Pattern: Eversweet


Eversweet margarine, produced and distributed only in Newfoundland (in Canada’s first margarine manufacturing plant), was a staple in many Newfoundland homes before the plant in St. John’s was closed in 2004. Grandmothers across the province undoubtedly still have some of the signature bright yellow tubs squirrelled away for storing everything from sewing supplies to leftovers.

The sample was knit in a vibrant yellow reminiscent of its namesake’s iconic yellow packaging (so iconic you’ll find the logo on t-shirts, in artwork, and even painted on garbage cans). The two-round pattern repeat is easily memorized, making for great TV knitting. Eversweet looks great in solid and tonal yarns, or in a self-striping colourway for a zig zag effect.



Child [Adult S, Adult M, Adult L] to fit 18 [20.5, 23, 25.5] cm/7 [8, 9, 10]” foot circumference as measured at the widest part of the foot

Finished Dimensions

16.5 [19, 21.5, 24] cm/6.5 [7.5, 8.5, 9.5]” leg and foot circumference, length is customizable

Choose a size with a finished foot circumference approximately 1.5 cm/0.5” smaller than the wearer’s actual foot circumference. See Construction Notes, page 3, for more detailed information on sock sizing.


One* 385 m/420 yd skein fingering weight yarn

*Some foot lengths may require more than one skein

Shown in Log House Cottage Yarns Squishy Sock (80% Extra Fine Merino Wool, 20% Nylon; 385 m/420 yd per 114 g/4.02 oz skein) in the Simply Speckled Dark Collection (medium yellow); 1 skein.


One set 2.25 mm/US 1 needles* (or size needed to obtain gauge)

*Either one set of DPNs, two circular needles, or one long circular needle, as you prefer for small circumference knitting in the round.


42 stitches & 46 rounds = 10 cm/4″ in Eversweet Pattern
32 stitches & 48 rounds = 10 cm/4” in Stockinette Stitch


Stitch markers (1 unique, 2 matching), waste yarn or stitch holder, tapestry needle




These socks are worked from the cuff down in the round with a Modified Eye of Partridge heel flap and gusset.

The Eversweet Pattern is a relatively dense stitch pattern. As a result, the stitch counts for each size are higher than would normally be used for fingering weight socks, and they are worn with less ease. Be sure to select a size based on the sizing information given.


Price: $7.00 CAD 15% off for release weekend only! Use coupon code EVERSWEET. Offer ends Monday, September 10th at midnight PDT. promo has ended

Available through my Ravelry store or directly via PayPal by clicking the “buy now” button below.

Kniterations is on Patreon!become_a_patron_button


How to give your pattern a unique, memorable name


Happy September everyone! It’s hard to believe that summer is almost over. For us in the knitwear industry, though, autumn is the best time of the year. The temperatures outside start to cool, and knitters start itching to cast on for warm woolies (yes, there are apparently knitters who don’t knit in the summer).

This is also the time of year when I get flooded with beautiful new designs in need of tech editing, so I’m thinking this month’s newsletter topic will be particularly timely.

When I’m trying to come up with interesting topics for my designer newsletter, I always go through a couple of questions in my head. Is there something specific I’ve helped someone with recently that they seemed to really find useful? What are the common mistakes I see over and over again? What do my clients seem to be struggling with? Well, this month I’m going to address something I struggle with as a designer: coming up with “good” names for my patterns. Read on for some tips and tricks for finding unique, memorable pattern names.

And as always, I’ve included my tech editing availability for the coming month. Over half of my September spots are already booked up, so get in touch soon if you’ve got a pattern nearly ready for editing!

Giving Your Pattern a Unique, Memorable Name

Naming my patterns is one of my least favourite parts of knitwear design. Sure, sometimes the name just comes to me in a eureka moment when I’m creating the design. Sometimes the name even comes first! But when it doesn’t, finding a “good” name can be difficult.

In my opinion, a “good” pattern name is memorable and unique, without being overly complicated. A unique name will stick in people’s minds, but you want it to be simple enough that they can easily go search for it – and find it – if they forgot where they saw/heard about the pattern.

Sounds like a tall order, and it can be, but for me, coming up with a “good” pattern name boils down to the following two steps:

  1. Brainstorming a list of quality possibilities
  2. Deciding on one that’s reasonably unique

1. Brainstorming a list of quality possibilities

If you’re having trouble coming up with a name for a pattern, start by doing a major brainstorming session. Write EVERYTHING down. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Draw from the pattern’s inspiration. 

    This may seem obvious, but think back to what inspired the pattern to begin with. Where did the idea come from? What else were you doing, or what were you thinking about, when you were developing it?

    Example: My Digger hat pattern was inspired by a stitch pattern I saw on the sweater of a character on Gilmore Girls. The character? Jason “Digger” Stiles. I didn’t really intend to name the pattern after him, but when I thought back to the pattern’s inspiration and development, I couldn’t get away from him!

  • Draw inspiration from the pattern itself.

    Again, this might sound obvious, but if the pattern hasn’t told you its name yet, look closer. Does the stitch pattern resemble anything in nature? Does the colour of the yarn remind you of anything? What properties does the fabric or the finished object have?

    Example: My Little Heart’s Ease mitten pattern. As I was knitting, I kept thinking how the pink colourwork pattern looked like little hearts, and Little Heart’s Ease is the name of a beautiful little community on Trinity Bay in Newfoundland.

  • Browse dictionary/thesaurus websites.

    Look back at all the words and ideas you wrote down while brainstorming.  For each word, think of every related word you can come up with, and write those down, too. Once you’ve got a long list of related words, start looking for synonyms and idioms related to those words (check out my two favourite online thesauruses here and here). You might start with a relatively generic word and stumble across a neat synonym or interesting idiom related to it that would make a great pattern name.

    The Free Dictionary has a great idiom finder that I find really helpful.

    Example: When trying to come up with a name for my In a Fog mitts, I couldn’t get past the fact that when the stitch pattern was worked in a solid and a speckled colourway it looked a bit blurry, or “foggy”. “Foggy” didn’t seem like a great name, but when I typed “fog” into the idiom finder I immediately saw “in a fog” and knew it was perfect.

2. Deciding on one that’s reasonably unique

So you’ve come up with something you think will make a great pattern name. Not so fast! Before you commit, I recommend doing a search for it on Ravelry. While the name doesn’t have to be totally unique, you don’t want to end up on the 6th page of search results when a knitter goes to look it up. I like to use names that have less than a full page of results so that my pattern will end up on page 1 when someone searches for the name.

If you type in your favorite contender and end up with 15 pages of results, don’t get discouraged! This a great time to head back to the idiom finder or a thesaurus to look for less common variations.

As with most tasks, having a method and a basic set of guidelines can help make pattern-naming a bit less daunting. I hope you find my suggestions helpful.

Do you have any tricks you use for coming up with great pattern names? Leave a comment or send me a message to let me know!

Tech Editing Availability

I have the following tech editing spaces remaining for September:

September 3rd – 7th: full!
September 10th – 14th: full!
September 17th – 21st: 1 space remaining!
September 24th – 28th: 5 spaces

Send me an email at allison AT kniterations DOT ca you’d like to reserve a spot!

– Allison

New Pattern: Wreckhouse Mitts


Wreckhouse is an area of Newfoundland named for its extreme winds. While the Newfoundland Railway was still in operation, the winds would occasionally blow railway cars off the tracks, and to this day transport trucks are still blown off the road from time to time.

The Wreckhouse mitts are knit in thick, dense Honeycomb Brioche Stitch, making them a stylish but also truly functional winter accessory. The honeycomb pockets trap warm air, creating an effective barrier against the briskest of winter winds. With options for both fingerless mitts and full mittens, this versatile pattern is great for all seasons.



Child [Woman’s M, Man’s M] to fit 16.5 [19, 21.5] cm/6.5 [7.5, 8.5]” hand circumference (measured at knuckles)

Finished Dimensions

12.5 [15, 17.5] cm/5 [6, 7]” hand circumference (measured at knuckles), height is adjustable

Honeycomb Brioche Stitch is a relatively stretchy stitch pattern. Choose a size with a finished hand circumference approximately 4 cm/1.5” smaller than the wearer’s actual hand circumference. Sample is size Woman’s M modelled on a 19 cm/7.5” hand.


Worsted weight yarn* in the following approximate amounts:

Fingerless Mitts

90 [100, 110] metres/100 [110, 120] yards

Full Mittens

125 [145, 160] metres/135 [160, 175] yards

*Shown in Cascade Yarns 220 Heathers (100% Wool; 201 m/220 yd per 100 g/3.53 oz skein) in colour Rainier Heather (9454).


One set 4.5 mm/US 7 needles* (or size needed to obtain gauge in Honeycomb Brioche Stitch)

One set 3.75 mm/US 5 needles* (or two sizes smaller than needed for gauge)

*Either one set of DPNs, two circular needles, or one long circular needle, as you prefer for small circumference knitting in the round.


16 stitches & 24 rounds = 10 cm/4″ in Honeycomb Brioche Stitch, after light wet blocking, on larger needles


Stitch markers (3, including one in a unique colour to mark the BOR), tapestry needle




These mittens are knit in the round, beginning with a Brioche Stitch cuff. The rest of the mitt is worked in Honeycomb Brioche Stitch. Thumb gussets in Brioche Stitch ensure a great fit, and a purl stitch faux side seam eliminates the jog that occurs when knitting Honeycomb Brioche Stitch in the round.

Honeycomb Brioche Stitch is a relatively stretchy stitch pattern. As a result, these mittens are worn with more negative ease than most. Be sure to select a size based on the sizing information given.

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Price: $7.00 CAD 15% off for release weekend only! Use coupon code WRECKHOUSE-MITTS. Offer ends Monday, August 13th at midnight PDT.  promo has ended

Or get all four patterns in the Wreckhouse Collection for 25% off when you purchase the eBook (see below).

Available through my Ravelry store or directly via PayPal by clicking the “buy now” button below.


The Wreckhouse collection is now available as an eBook! This means:

Kniterations is on Patreon!become_a_patron_button


August Designer Newsletter: 10 Apps to Help Streamline Your Design Workflow


Hello everyone! The heat and humidity have finally arrived in my neck of the woods, and I can’t be the only one looking forward to cooler days and wooly hand knits. I make no apologies – I am a well-known lover of winter and am not built for temperatures over 25 celsius!

My August Designer Newsletter went out earlier today, and this month I shared some of my favourite apps that help me keep all areas of my business running smoothly. From photography and graphics to productivity and organization, these are 10 apps that I love and use regularly (there are even a couple that are knitting-specific). No sponsorships here, just my genuine stamp of approval.

(Not on my mailing list? Be sure to sign up here to avoid missing out on future newsletters!)

And as always, I’ve included my tech editing availability for the coming month. I’m taking a few days off in August, but I still have lots of spots available throughout the month. Get in touch soon if you’ve got a pattern nearly ready for editing!

10 Apps to Help Streamline Your Design Workflow

1. Buffer

What it is: Buffer is a social media management platform. It allows you to connect various social media accounts, post from all of them in one place, and analyze your posts’ performance.

How I use it: I mainly use Buffer for scheduling Instagram posts – when I have a pattern release or test knit coming up, I’ll plan out a few posts at once and then “buffer” them so they go out when I want them to.

While I do like posting to Instagram a little more organically most of the time, I find that a social media management platform like Buffer works well for planning my marketing posts.


2. Linktree

What it isLinktree is an application that allows you to add more than one link to your Instagram profile. It’s essentially a mobile-friendly landing page where you can add as many links as you like.

How I use it: I find Linktree very helpful for making sure my followers can always find the information they need about the different areas of my business. This way when I am promoting a new pattern, for example, followers can still find my technical editing services, newsletter signup link, etc. directly from my profile.


3. Yarnpond

What it isYarnpond is a brand new platform for managing the test knitting process. It allows you to publish testing calls (publicly or only to your preferred testers), review and accept/reject applications, set testing milestones, collect pattern feedback, and rate and review test knitters (a huge bonus for those of us who have been burned by unreliable test knitters in the past).

How I use it: I have only used Yarnpond for running a couple of test knits so far, but I definitely this it has the potential to be a great tool. Running test knits can be frustrating at times, so when I heard about Yarnpond, I knew I had to try it. The platform is brand new, so it’s still growing and there are still a few kinks to be worked out, but I think it has the potential to be an indispensable part of my test knitting process. The more people to register, give it a try, and submit feedback to the developers, the better it will become!


4. Canva

What it is: Canva is a web-based graphic design tool.

How I use it: Canva is one of the applications I use the most. I use it create all my graphics and collages. You can use your own dimensions, but Canva also has lots of templates for different types of social media posts to help ensure your graphics are the right size and resolution for what you’re using them for. It’s also great for helping you keep your graphics consistent – you can simply copy previous graphics and modify them!


5. Trello

What it is: Trello is a project management application. It’s difficult for me to explain what Trello actually *is* in just a few short sentences, so I recommend you have a quick look at their tour here:

How I use it: Trello has completely changed the way I work (for the better). I use Trello to plan my work day/week, to capture and organize all my repetitive and non-repetitive tasks, and to manage creative projects. I have checklist templates for repetitive tasks that I can copy and use over and over again so that when I do something like tech edit a pattern, I never forget any steps (see photo below).

And Trello is not only great for business. I use it for organizing home projects and tasks, too!

(If you’re familiar with David Allen’s “Getting Things Done” time-management method, you might recognize the contexts I have added to the tasks in my templates. If you’re not familiar with this method, I highly recommend reading Allen’s life-changing book.)


6. Inkscape

What it is: Inkscape is a free, open source professional vector graphics editor.

How I use it: I use it for creating schematics for my own patterns and also for my tech editing clients. Inkscape can be a bit overwhelming when you’re starting out – it’s very powerful and I only use a small fraction of the features for my schematics. For an overview of the basic features you’ll use to create schematics, I recommend this tutorial from Joeli Creates.


7. knitCompanion

What it is: knitCompanion is a mobile app that helps you track rows and counters while you are knitting, including for instructions that are worked simultaneously.

How I use it: knitCompanion is indispensable when knitting from large charts, but how does it help the design process? When it comes to designing and tech editing, I like to put charts into knitCompanion to more easily check the line-by-line written instructions against the charts without losing my place.


8. Stitchmastery

What it is: Stitchmastery is knitting chart software. It allows you to create charts and generate matching written instructions, or even enter written instructions and generate charts!

How I use it: I use Stitchmastery for the charts in all my patterns. I also sometimes create charts for my tech editing clients based on their hand-drawn charts or written instructions. When tech editing a pattern, if I’m having trouble with a particular stitch pattern, I’ll often plug it into Stitchmastery to help me visualize things and determine where the issue is.


9. AirServer Connect

What it is: AirServer is a screen mirroring receiver for Mac and PC. It allows you to receive AirPlay and Google Cast streams, similar to an Apple TV or a Chromecast device.

How I use it: I do all my own pattern photography using just my iPhone, a tripod, and a shutter switch. AirServer allows me to mirror my iPhone screen to the monitor of my Macbook Air, allowing me to see how my photos look on a big screen when I’m in front of the camera. This is extremely helpful as it allows me to direct my own photography in a way – I can see how my pose looks and adjust my body and the knitwear without needing someone behind the camera looking at my iPhone screen!


10. BeFocused

What it is: BeFocused is a focus timer app (available for iPhone and macOS) based on the Pomodoro time management method. The idea is to divide your workday into highly focused 25-minute segments separated by short breaks in an effort to increase productivity.

How I use it: I use the BeFocused app to keep track of my “pomodoros”. It keeps track of how many time chunks I’ve completed and prompts me to take breaks in between. It’s great for completing those dreaded tasks you keep putting off. Just start your timer, put your head down, and bang out 25 minutes of that task you’ve been avoiding! This is another one I use for personal tasks – you’d be surprised how much house cleaning you can get done in 25 focused minutes!


As mentioned above, none of these are sponsored endorsements. All of these applications are ones I personally use (some of which I’m not sure how I’d live without at this point). Hopefully, I’ve helped you discover your new favourite tool!

I have the following tech editing spaces remaining for August:

August 6th – 10th: 3 spaces
August 13th – 17th: 5 spaces
August 20th – 24th: 5 spaces
August 27th – 31st: 7 spaces

Fill out the form here or send me an email at allison (at) kniterations (dot) ca if you’d like to reserve a spot!


– Allison

Regatta Day Sale: 50% off all patterns!

Happy Regatta Day! I’m celebrating this unusual holiday with 50% off all patterns in my Ravelry shop. No coupon code required! promo has ended


So… what’s Regatta Day?

The Royal St. John’s Regatta is the oldest organized sporting event in North America, dating back to 1818 (learn more about the history here).

More than just boat races, “the Regatta” is an annual community event well known for its large crowds and lakeside entertainment (from food and drink to games of chance and everything in between).

Regatta Day is also a civic holiday in St. John’s and falls on the first Wednesday of August – weather permitting. If the weather isn’t suitable for racing, the races – and the holiday – are postponed. Playing “Regatta Roulette” refers to the practice of partying on the Tuesday night before the Regatta is supposed to be held in hopes that the races, and the holiday, will go ahead as scheduled!

As if that weren’t enough, many stores in the greater St. John’s area that don’t observe the holiday hold massive Boxing Day/Black Friday-type sales on Regatta Day. This year I figured I’d jump on board!

For today only, get 50% off all individual patterns* in the Kniterations Ravelry shop! No coupon code required. promo has ended

*Excludes the Wreckhouse Collection eBook

Happy knitting!

– Allison

Common pattern mistakes and how to avoid them

Tips from a Tech Editor.png

Hi everyone! My July Designer Newsletter went out this morning. I had a very busy month of tech editing in June and it got me thinking about some of the common pattern mistakes I tend to see over and over again. In my newsletter this month, I shared the list I compiled, in hopes that I can help you ensure your pattern is in the best possible shape when you send it to me for editing. A more polished pattern takes less time to edit which means lower tech editing costs for you!

And as always, I included my tech editing availability for the coming month. I’m already fully booked for this week and nearly fully booked next week, but I have some spots available during the rest of July. Get in touch soon (fill out the form on this page) if you’ve got a pattern nearly ready for editing!

Common pattern mistakes and how to avoid them

As a tech editor, I see it all. From having no yarn listed to forgetting to bind off, I’ve seen every pattern mistake under the sun. But that’s ok! Everyone is human, and this is why you hire an editor. However, the better shape your pattern is in when you send it to me, the more quickly it can be edited, which helps keep your tech editing expenses down.

Lately, I’ve been seeing a lot of the same avoidable issues over and over again, so I thought it would be a good opportunity to compile a list to share with you. If you’ve made these mistakes before, don’t worry! I’ve made many of them myself in my own patterns. My goal here is to help you make sure your pattern is in the best possible shape before you send it for tech editing.

1. Lack of consistency in measurements, unit conversions, and rounding

I didn’t know there were so many different ways to calculate/convert/round measurements until I became a tech editor.

Do you calculate both the imperial and metric measurements directly from your gauge? Or do you calculate all your measurements first in inches and then convert to cm? If you do it the second way, do you convert to cm before rounding your inch measurements, or afterward? Do you use 1″ = 2.5 cm, or 1″ = 2.54 cm? Do you round inches to 0.25″ and cm to 0.5 cm, or do you use a different way of rounding?

I won’t get into the pros and cons of each, but I will say that no matter which method(s) you use, it should be done consistently throughout the pattern. When I plug your stitch/row counts and gauge into my spreadsheet, I should be able to reproduce your measurements consistently to a fraction of a unit using the same formula.

2. Abbreviations list is not accurate

Your abbreviations list should contain all the abbreviations used in the pattern – nothing more, nothing less. It also helps to have things alphabetized (easier for the knitter to look things up, quicker for me to verify).

3. Needles list is not accurate

As with the abbreviations list, the needles section should contain all the needle sizes and styles required. Everything in this list should be referenced at some point in the pattern, and every needle referenced in the pattern should be included in this list.

Also, if your pattern calls for circular needles, be sure to include the cable length as well as the needle size. If cable length isn’t important, it’s still helpful to include a minimum size that will work.

4. Tools/notions list is not accurate

This list should always contain the basics (e.g, tapestry/yarn needle for weaving in ends), but often designers will use a template, or copy and paste this section from another pattern, and forget to update it. Does the knitter need stitch markers, buttons, blocking tools, waste yarn, etc.? If they do need stitch markers, how many? Do they need different colours/styles to mark different pattern elements? Be specific.

5. Using “Row” and “Round” incorrectly

Flat knitting instructions should reference “rows”, and circular knitting instructions should reference “rounds”. This goes for pattern instructions AND gauge. A simple find and replace in your word processor can help you easily verify you are using these terms correctly.

6. Forgetting to label the RS and WS for flat knitting

This should be done for at least the first two rows, although you can get away with just labeling the first RS row. If you follow these row instructions with something like “work Rows X-Y Z times”, I also recommend indicating RS and/or WS again on the next row.

7. Neglecting to denote stitch count changes.

Most patterns have increases and decreases that change the stitch count and it’s helpful to provide knitters with stitch count information so that they can be sure that they haven’t made a mistake. It also helps me verify that the instructions and stitch patterns that follow will work over the new stitch count(s).

How to indicate the stitch count change depends on the type of instruction:

  • When an instruction is worked only once, include the new stitch count. The new stitch count is by far the most useful piece of information to give the knitter when the instruction is worked just once.
  • When an instruction is repeated later in the pattern, include the number of stitches increased or decreased. When you want to repeat the same increase or decrease instruction more than once, the new stitch count total is only accurate the first time the instruction is worked. For this reason, including the number of stitches increased or decreased becomes more useful (and correct).
  • When an instruction is repeated a fixed number of times, include both. If an instruction (or group of instructions) containing an increase or decrease is repeated a fixed number of times before moving on, you can include the number of stitches increased or decreased in the line-by-line instructions, and then list the new total stitch count at the end.

Confused? I blogged about this topic back in 2017, including examples: Indicating Stitch Count Changes

8. Including charts but not telling the knitter how/when to use them

My clients will tell you that I am a vocal advocate for writing patterns from a neutral point of view.

This means that when including two representations of the same information (i.e. charts and written instructions to represent a single stitch pattern) I always recommend designers write the pattern in a neutral way so that the knitter can follow the pattern from start to finish regardless of the representation they choose.

At the very least, it should be obvious how each representation can be used by the knitter. I often see patterns written from start to finish, and then charts are included at the end, seemingly as an afterthought, with no indication of which part of the written pattern they can be used to replace.

I actually created a resource to help explain this concept, so if you’re interested in learning more, you can click here to download the PDF: Writing patterns with both charts and written instructions.

9. Key pattern elements missing

Omitting key elements of a pattern is more common than you would think. When you’re knitting your cuff-down sock sample, you *know* you’ll be closing the toe using Kitchener Stitch, but it’s one of those things that’s so obvious that it’s easy to forget to write it down. Here are a few of the most common offenses I see:

  • Components missing (needles, yarn, gauge, abbreviations, sizes, finished measurements, etc.)
  • Yarn listed, but actual amounts required not given
  • Actual garment elements missing (sleeves, heels, thumbs, etc).
  • Finishing instructions missing (binding off, Kitchener Stitch, weaving in ends, blocking, etc.)

10. Yarn names styled incorrectly

When listing an actual brand name of yarn, it’s important to style the name the way the dyer or yarn company does. This not only helps knitters locate the correct yarn, but it’s respectful to the dyer/yarn company to write their name exactly as they prefer to have it written. Plus, misspellings of brand names and companies look unprofessional!

Would you believe me if I said this is just scratching the surface? In all seriousness, I want to repeat that if you are guilty of any of these common mistakes, please don’t feel bad! I have done many (ok, most) of them myself in my own patterns, especially when I was starting out. We’re all human, and this is why you hire an editor.

Tech Editing Availability

I have the following tech editing spaces remaining for July:

July 2nd – 6th: full!
July 9th – 13th: 1 space remaining!
July 16th – 20th: 4 spaces
July 23rd – 27th: 6 spaces
July 30th – August 3rd: 6 spaces

Fill out the form here if you’d like to reserve a spot!

– Allison

New Pattern: Walter


Walter is a sweet, colour-blocked baby blanket with endless colour combination possibilities. The geometric motif is a neutral choice for any baby, making this blanket a great shower gift for parents-to-be. Worked in a soft, superwash wool for both warmth and ease of care, Walter is a great size for cribs, bassinets, and strollers.


One size


67 x 90 cm/26.5 x 35.5”, after wet blocking


Worsted weight yarn in the following approximate amounts:
C1 (White): 355 m/388 yd
C2 (Navy): 470 m/514 yd
C3 (River Rock): 120 m/131 yd

Shown in Cascade 220 Superwash (100% Wool; 201m/220 yd per 100 g/3.53 oz skein) in colours C1: White (871), C2: Navy (854), and C3: River Rock (874).


One set 5 mm/US 8 needles* (or size needed to obtain gauge)

*Either one long circular needle (cable length at least 80 cm/32”) or one set of straight needles, as you prefer for flat knitting.


18 stitches & 36 rows = 10 cm/4″ in Garter Stitch


Tapestry needle, blocking wires and pins (optional)




This blanket is worked in four pieces. Each piece consists of four triangles that are joined seamlessly by picking up stitches. The pattern contains a schematic that gives a visual representation of how each triangle is picked up and worked. The pieces are then blocked and seamed together using a type of Mattress Stitch for Garter Stitch seams.


Price: $7.00 CAD 15% off for release weekend only! Use coupon code WALTER. Offer ends Monday, July 2nd at midnight PDT. promo has ended

Available through my Ravelry store or directly via PayPal by clicking the “buy now” button below.

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