When Was I Last Excited by a Pattern?

What a thrill – knitting for decades, falling in love with a pattern newly introduced on Ravelry, buying it, and then a revelation.

I was madly in love with Sian.

I’ve bought lots of patterns on impulse. Not knitted many. I have almost as a large pattern stash as my yarn stash. Ridiculous.

But this one – in a completely different category from anything else I’d ever purchased. I hadn’t been this excited since I made my first cabled sweater.

I was one of the lucky ones who made a quick decision and managed to buy the pattern at a discount. But when I saw it, read it through, saw all that it contained, I felt guilty. I wanted to send the designer more money. I thought about just sending her some PayPal cash (But no.) I thought about buying more of her patterns. (Yes, I will do that, but that’s not enough). I was so in love, I suggested a knitalong to the knit night group I belong to. That’s part of the answer, but more.

I then I finally remembered this. What a dope. Of course. I’ve been absent more that present over the past year, but maybe some of you are still with me so here I am telling you about Sian.

Before the very long list, two personal tips.

  1. I had difficulty almost immediately and my friend Kim came to the rescue as she has before. I was overthinking the instructions. When I just read what was there, all was well. And then I did it a second time. Lesson – trust what designer Elizabeth Doherty says.
  2. I’ve never used a dramatically colour changing yarn before and I love it. They say it keeps you knitting one more row just to see what happens and yes, that happened; I recommend it for Sian. The photo above is my swatch.

Here’s the very long list  of Sian’s advantages.

  • Beautiful – subjective, I know. Zip down to the bottom to see the photo.
  • Comfortable and easy to wear – more subjectivity.
  • Stitch patterns inspired by Scotland’s Outer Hebrides.
  • 2 shapes – cropped and a-line. Two of our knitalongers are opting for cropped a-line. So a third option.
  • Slip stitch colourwork – so you are only using one colour per row.
  • Swatching options – flat, to test colours, and in-the-round, to test gauge and get the feel of knitting the slip stitches.
  • 12 sizes – from 31.25″ bust circumference to 65.5″.
  • Neckline options – keep it wide as the photo shows or create a shallower neckline – that was my choice.
  • Detailed, easy to follow, German short row shaping, for excellent higher-in -the-back neckline fit.
  • Underarm sleeve gusset for excellent fit.
  • Bicep measurements! When did you last see that in a pattern?
  • Slip stitch colourwork options – all one colour, colour change yarn, or different colours, as you please.
  • Excellent test knits on the Ravelry page. Different examples to inspire.
  • Three pages offer “thoughts and advice on customizing Sian.”  Invaluable.
  • A detailed chart guides size choice depending on gauge, any gauge, from 16 stitches to 26 stitches over 4″. Wow!

So just why do I think I know what I’m doing, and you ought to listen to me  when I rave madly about a pattern and recommend it so extravagantly?

Because I have read through thousands of patterns, likely not as many as magazine editors, but still – many thousands – in my capacity as newsletter writer/editor and new designer decision maker at Patternfish, sadly no longer a pattern publisher.

If you buy Sian and think I’m wrong, let me know. If you think other patterns are more deserving, tell me about that, too.

Knit happily.





6 Replies to “When Was I Last Excited by a Pattern?”

  1. Oh, I do love the look of it Gayle! And is it all slipped stitches and no Fair Isle?
    And you’re right! Encouraging new customers for the designer is an excellent way to spread the joy!
    And I’m told two orders I have are for the KAL so I will get on them tomorrow!

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