This is Monica Kennedy’s Girlie Flower Babyghan which I have made several times. Well written and quick to work up. Her other round ripple patterns are glorious!
I probably own patterns from every well-known crochet designer. I own books, magazines, leaflets, and those free tear-offs. My house contains more patterns than I could ever possibly use in this or sever more lifetimes! How about you?
Amidst all these books, magazines, and other pattern sources, including internet sites, I find myself returning again and again to the patterns of a handful of designers. Their designs appeal to me for a variety of reasons. Maybe I just like the designer’s color sense. Maybe a certain artist designs sweaters the way I like them to fit. Perhaps a designer always includes stitch counts at the end of rows, making it far easier for me to follow his or her patterns as the project grows.
I’ve written before about the elements I look for in a pattern – like those stitch counts at the end of rows. I’m less concerned with so-called ‘Difficulty Level’ than the language in which the pattern is written – a language that can include schematics, charts, and graphs in addition to words and numbers.
I also have favorite designers for different categories – shawls, round ripple afghans, full size afghans, baby sweaters, motifs, etc. I also am a huge fan of freeform crochet and have learned a great deal about color and the substance of crochet from Prudence Mapstone and Margaret Hubert among others.
What do I do if I love a pattern but it’s poorly written or inaccurate? There is a shawl pattern that is one of my favorites, but the pattern required a great deal of ‘interpretation’, shall we say. Fortunately, with the help of real and virtual crochet friends, I was able to successfully make the shawl. I would likely not have been successful if left solely to my own devices – just me and that pattern. Despite the difficulties I encountered, that remains my favorite shawl.
Kim Guzman’s Adult Jiffy Jacket works up quickly and beautifully, adaptable in many ways. The stitch pattern is reversible and Kim is always responsive to requests for help with any of her patterns. This was the first sweater I ever made (other than baby sweaters).
It may be quite difficult to choose a single favorite from among the wealth of great crochet designers on the planet. Fortunately, we don’t have to limit ourselves to a single favorite. I’d love to hear from my readers as to who their favorites are – and why – along with a source of or link to a good example of that designer’s work. I’m sure there are designers out there whose work I have yet to appreciate. Looking will be all the more fun if we know what it is about the designer’s work that appeals to you. So, let us hear from you so we can all increase our knowledge of crochet and designers.
Ken Jones is a versatile designer. He seems to really enjoy designing garments for women. He’s very approachable, offers inexpensive but well written patterns, and is a funny, upbeat kinda guy. He teaches crochet on a regular basis which I feel keeps him connected to the potential problems crocheters might encounter.
Some of my other favorite crochet designers include the likes of Patricia Kristofferson and Sheila of Sheila’s Schnauzie’s for doilies, Bonnie Pierce for squares, and the only beanie pattern (as simple as that should be) that I’ve been able to recreate consistently is designed by Croshay Lady Laura Killoran. Her beanie pattern was offered for free once upon a time, but due to violations of her simple and reasonable rules for copying and distribution of the pattern, she was forced to charge for it.
Of course there are all those ‘nameless’ Russian, Japanese, and Brazilian designers whose work appears in magazines I’m occasionally able to purchase online. Since schematics are the international language of crochet, I’m able to follow the patterns of these brilliant designers. The internet has also allowed many crocheters who would otherwise remain anonymous place their talent into the public forum. Maybe there’s a crochet superstar waiting to be discovered. In fact, I’m sure of it!
My mind is getting foggy now with the dozens of names of fantastic crochet designers! I know I’ve omitted the names of luminaries I love. But, for now, I’ll leave it to my readers to round out the list by posting in the Comments Section below. I’m hoping to find one or more designers whose work I’ve never seen.
By jd wolfe