The Guide is the beginning of every pattern from Jill Wolcott Knits. I set out to make my patterns simpler, but ended up with more content! I am always asking what if __________? And, how to give knitters / users access to the information they need. Then there is basic usability stuff that has to be considered. I am sure I am answering some of this incorrectly, but I am trying!
I rearranged the cover elements a bit:
This contains at-a-glance information and has moved to the upper left. Details of what it contains.
- level of difficulty. There is a pdf you can download that explains my levels of difficulty. The words I use are meant to describe the project, not the knitter. Engagement is how much attention you need to pay, and will vary throughout the pattern and be different for each knitter.
- type of knitting. In the round, flat, moebius, pieces, etc.
- techniques inside. This tends to be just the highlights!
- other information. Whatever else I think you might want to know in a couple of words.
I wish there was a formula I used to write this! I also wish I knew what knitters want me to tell them.
Photo & Project Name
There should be a good photo on the cover that makes the knitter want to knit the project! Cost is high, and finding a model is tricky.
The project name moved into the center of the pattern, sitting over the photo on the left edge.
Photo credit. Instagram hashtags. Inside Scoop sign up, copyright footer and website.
Table of Contents
This is a relatively new addition. Having a TOC allows me to hyperlink every page. All pages are linked to the actual page, and each section of the pattern is linked to text and/or charts.
The sections here are named. I try to keep things in the same order in each pattern, but sometimes I have to get creative. In Chinchero Mini, I put my commentary following the TOC of Directions. The pages in this part use lower-case Roman numerals. At the bottom of each page the footer defines what is found on that page.
Right pages / Odd numbers) have the pattern name running up the right margin; the footer has my web address, the version number, and page and contents information.
Left pages / Even numbers do not have a pattern name on the side, so it is in the footer in ALL CAPS. Also in the footer is the copyright information.
Following the TOC for the Guide is the TOC for the Pattern itself. The headings contain a corresponding letter (accessories) or number (garments) plus the section names. The text and Action chart page numbers are linked for each section. I.e., A – BOTTOM TRIM or 1 – BOTTOM TRIM.
There is A Formatting System
This is a page of explanation of text styles used to differentiate types of information in the Guide and the Pattern. I give a visual example of each below the explanation.
How to Proceed
Generally, a knitter’s first response is to assume that the Pattern is exceptionally difficult due to the number of pages. While I believe this is completely not the case, it can be overwhelming to see the bulk! I have been thinking about this material for weeks, months, sometimes years and I have put it all together so you have access to my knowledge and process. A mind meld would be easier.
There are two downloadable versions of each pattern (the entire Guide and Pattern). I can make the layout so you can 1) print it page-by-page (choosing what you wish to print) or make the 2) layout side-by-side so that written instructions and Action charts appear together on two pages for using a on device. I personally like to use both, so I have make it possible for you to as well.