Crochet patterns can be found in a variety of locations, some for free and some you have to pay for. Among those that must be paid for, how much is too much? I’ve heard a variety of answers to this question. One friend purchased a skirt pattern for $6 and after making it decided that $6 was too much. All of us like free patterns, but many people criticize the quality of the patterns we get for free. We have to pay for patterns that appear in print – in books and magazines – and on some websites like Interweave. Other sites have oodles of free patterns to offer. Garnstudio.com comes to mind.
This begs the question: How much are you willing to pay for a crochet pattern?
Most crochet magazines have a list price of $6-10 per issue and contain from 6 to 15 patterns (typically). Of course, there’s more in the magazine other than patterns, but the price per pattern then becomes at least $1 – and often more. You have to pay for patterns you know you’ll never make, for instance, as each magazine will contain patterns that just don’t suit you. It’s the rare magazine that I see that I’ll make as many as 3 of the patterns. The more patterns I make in each magazine, the lower the price per pattern if we calculate the price per pattern based on the cover price.
Books are another matter. They are more expensive and contain more patterns. But, very few crocheters are likely to crochet every pattern in a book. So, if you pay $20 (plus tax and maybe shipping) for a book containing 20+ patterns, you are again paying about $1 per pattern – but more per pattern unless you make them all.
At your LYS, you might be able to purchase an individual pattern for $3-$8. I believe I’m more likely to actually work up that project since I’ve selected it individually, probably for a specific person or event. I might also purchase the yarn right then too. $6 for a cardigan pattern and $50-$80 for the yarn at the LYS and I’ve got a great project with the pattern being the least expensive part of the equation. And, that pattern can be used more than once, so it’s value may increase in my crochet library. Any pattern we make multiple times definitely pays for itself.
There is also the issue I’ve heard discussed many times. Patterns we pay for are better written and have fewer errors than the freebies. I have not found this to be true across the board. Some publishers are better than others with editing their crochet patterns for accuracy before publication. Most books and magazines have readily accessible Errata resources for their patterns. But, it takes frogging and frustration most of the time before we think to check for Errata, doesn’t it? I have found that many free patterns I find online are actually better written – and the designer is more readily available to help – than the books and magazines I’ve paid for in my library.
Bottom line – how much are you willing to pay for a crochet pattern? I’d love to hear from readers, so I’ll offer categories to encourage your responses.
The patterns I use are – Free Only
The patterns I use are – Paid Only
The patterns I use are – a mix of Free and Paid
I’m willing to pay $1-$5 for a single pattern
I’m willing to pay more than $5 for a single pattern
That’s all. I’ll tally the responses and report the results. Feel free to send emails to me privately if you’d prefer to have your answers tallied anonymously. Otherwise, please post your responses in the Comments Section below. Thanks!