Yesterday, I taught one of my knitters how to “reserve stitches” on a scrap piece of yarn for use later in the project (the scrap yarn pictured above, as well as a few scribbles of math). This is just one of a few new techniques my knitters are working on; some others include carrying two skeins of yarn along the side of a scarf for striped colorwork, Fair Isle, advanced accessory making (bags that include handles, etc.), and for some, mitten making.
It’s quite difficult teaching the art of pattern reading; my students have trouble “trusting” a pattern, which I don’t really blame them for since some are written poorly. However, I find patterns that are clear and detailed for them, most of which I’ve tested myself. This way, they don’t have to do much math and erratas are non-existant.
Still, some take to reading a pattern much better than others; and I don’t mean its the precise students that enjoy patterns, and the free spirited ones who just like to go for it. Some of my most precise students have the most trouble reading the pattern and following it–they question every line!
“Just go with it,” I tell them, sometimes to no avail.
Unfortunately, I can’t recall whether, when I first learned pattern reading, if I was hesitant in the same ways.