stripes! from below

I have not finished writing the pattern/tutorial for Stripes! yet. Part of this is because I have been absolutely crushingly busy since getting back from the conference, but the other part is this: I have no idea what I’m doing. Well, that’s not entirely true. I’ve got the writing part down just fine. But the schematics…that’s what’s killing me. I can doodle out my schematics with pen and paper, but I have no idea how to turn those doodles into something on the computer that I can put into my pattern. I’ve not done much in the way of graphics stuff since my MS Paint days, back in the late 90’s (and am running a completely different OS these days, too), so I am rather out of date when it comes to knowing what’s out there. And I don’t have Photoshop, either, but I do have the GIMP.

Anyway, any advice? What tricks do you guys have for making schematics?

10 thoughts on “help!”

  1. I’m happy to help you out on the GIMP side if you know what you generally want the pictures to look like. :)

  2. Love, love, love your sweater. Go to Amazon and search “Design Your Own Knits”. The book is absolutely wonderful and may be helpful to you.

    Good luck!

  3. hmm i’m not very familiar with GIMP, so i can’t help! i’m not sure how people create schematics for their patterns.

  4. My friend Deb Wilson ( showed me some knitting pattern software, and it looked like nothing so much as a bitmap editor (for making icons). So that’s what I use – a bitmap editor KIconEdit (on Linux/KDE).

    Really good knitting software would have the following features:

    Colour abstraction: allow you to call the colours “colour 1”, “colour 2”, “main colour”, “accent colour 1” etc. and then allow you to assign the actual colour later – and switch them around too.

    Repetition: you define colours for a few stitches, then tell it to repeat across the row, or up a few rows.

    Aspect ratio: you should be able to change the aspect ratio of the little boxes in the icon editor to whatever your tension is.

    That sort of thing.

    Also, xfig has some knitting symbols in its library.

    The only knitting software I’ve seen is the one Deb showed me, so perhaps there is already some sw that does that.

    Well I’m a programmer but I’m not a UI kind of programmer, so this isn’t really up my alley, unfortunately.

  5. And *this* is why I’ve never tried to write down anything I’ve made up to knit! I so hope you have better luck than I, though, because I do love that sweater :)

  6. I’ve just used PowerPoint to create schematics. Use the shapes to create the sweater, then fill them all with the same color (and use the same outline color).

    You can include measurements in a text box.

    Select them all and go to arrange–>group to put them together.

    Then save it as a .jpg file or whatever you need.

    I think this is easier than using Illustrator, if you’re not familiar with graphic design software.

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