I spent the day yesterday outside of Philadelphia, PA at a “professional development day” for crochet designers, publishers, editors, etc. (It’s part of the Knit and Crochet Show that’s going on this week.) At lunch we got to see a preview of the new magazine Crochet Today. Bret Bara, the magazine’s editor said they spent a long time with focus groups figuring out what should be different about the new magazine–two things stood out to me:

  • Their participants wanted (and are getting) schematics
  • Their participants wanted (and are getting) charts

By the way, the room erupted in applause upon hearing this news. Schematics, of course, help the crocheter to understand how the garment comes together–but it also makes it so much easier to alter sizing, change yarns, stitch patterns, essentially become a more active creative participant in the process of creating the garment–not just a stitcher. And of course, schematics have been a standard part of knitting patterns for a long time.

Charts, well, I love charts–charts can take hundreds of words and abbreviations and simplify them–charts are why we can read adorable japanese crochet patterns, charts could, possibly make it so crochet patterns don’t take up *three times* the space in print that knitting patterns do, perhaps encouraging editors of publications that carry both media to include more crochet. I was very excited.

What’s more, this morning, I got home and found Carol Alexander’s “Talking Crochet” in my inbox. Coincidentally, she said her readers are “demanding” schematics–and starting in November “Crochet!” and her other publications will have them. Woohoo! The power of the customer. Now let’s start demanding charts too.

By the way, I’ll have more fun news and pix from PDD soon–I got to meet Drew in person, (he’s just as nice as he seems, and very, very, funny), catch up with friends, and learn lots of great stuff. I just wish I could have stayed longer, it sounds like the rest of the weekend is going to be a blast. Enjoy, guys!

Crocheter’s demand "grown-up" patterns