Stitch Pattern Repeats

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Duration: 6:48

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Reading a crochet pattern can sometimes seem very daunting. There are so many abbreviations and a variety of punctuation is used, making it difficult to decode. Even stitchers who have been crocheting for decades sometimes find difficulty in reading crochet patterns. In this video, Mary Beth Temple discusses common notations used in crochet patterns and how to read them.

Mary Beth begins by isolating a stitch repeat in the pattern. She is using her pattern, the Sensible Shawl, as the example. For Row 1 of the shawl there are instructions that involve parentheses. She notes that the parentheses are used in order to indicate the eight stitches are repeated multiple times. This is a visual cue that isolates the stitch repeat. Mary Beth notes that you’re counting the number of stitches that you’re working into, not the number of stitches you are creating on the row.

Other commonly used notations are:

  • Straight-sided brackets
  • Asterisks

Mary Beth explains how both might be used in a pattern. Straight-sided brackets are frequently used when a stitch repeat already has parentheses contained within it. An asterisk is used for long strings of text to indicate that you’ll be repeating from the asterisk. Finally, Mary Beth suggests picking a pattern that is a little out of your comfort zone and to read it carefully. You might find reading a pattern a little easier now that you’ve watched this video!