A Very Reductionist Pattern

I have long been a proponent of the old-style Norwegian patterns used when I was a child.  Eclectic blogger Connie Krug sent me another version of a reductionist pattern.  It too is short but is set up differently than the old-style Norwegian patterns.  This cardigan pattern is from Junghans-Wolle (www.junghanswolle.de) and available for free on the website.

For discussion purposes, I split the PDF into two one-page .jpg files.  This picture shows page 1 of 2:


Here is page 2 of 2:


I don’t read German – unless the word is very close to its Norwegian (a Germanic language) word.  Connie kindly translated the instructions into English, but I wanted to see if I could figure out the pattern without her translations.  I looked up a few terms from Heathman’s Knitting Languages, but I found myself needing to refer to Connie’s instructions.

Starting at page one of the pattern and from top down, this is what Connie explained:

  • The header provides the model name (Modell 434/2) and sizes available (from 36/38 to 52/54).
  • The table below the header provides the yarn and amounts  needed for each size.
  • Below the table all materials required are listed.  The text gives information on the stitch pattern use, gauge, how to work the button bands and neck band and finishing.
  • The chart for the stitch pattern follows.
  • Below that come the schematics.

You will note that there are two sets of schematics.

  • Why?  Because the pattern provides 5 sizes and the range is large.
  • The first set of schematics is for sizes 36/38 through 44/46, the second set is for sizes 48/50-52/54.
  • Each sets of schematics includes a schematic for the back, for the front and the sleeve.
  • For each part, the size in cms is given, as well as the corresponding number of stitches and rows.

Going between the pattern and Connie’s translation of the schematic for the back in the smallest size, see if you can follow the instructions:

  • Cast on 81 stitches (=23cm), knit 8 rows (4cm) in stitch pattern 1.
  • Then switch to pattern 2, decreasing 4 times 1 stitch on each side every 6th row, starting on the 3rd row. Knit a total of 22 rows (8cm).
  • Knit 12 rows of pattern 3 over now 73 stitches
  • Continue in pattern 3, increase 1 stitch on every side four times in every 6th row.
  • Knit a total of 26 rows (11 cm), now 81 stitches.
  • For armhole, decrease 2 times 2 stitches in every 2nd row, then 3 times 1 stitch in every second row. A total of 10 rows (4cm) knitted.
  • Knit 36 rows (15cm) in pattern 3.
  • Neck: cast of middle 31 stitches, then 2 times 3 stitches every second row at the same time the shoulder decreases are worked: decreasing 4 times stitches in every second row.

As Connie notes, this style of pattern writing means she needs carry only a short pattern with her as she knits.  (Nice!)

I have sent this pattern to a few knitters for their input.  While overall I like this pattern writing style, other knitters offered some critical comments.  My next blog will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of this pattern.

And, of course, many thanks to Connie for both sharing this pattern with me and providing translations!

This entry was posted in Crocheting, Knitting, Miscellany, Pattern Construction and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to A Very Reductionist Pattern

  1. Pingback: Three Examples of Excellent Narrative Pattern Writing | The Sweaty Knitter, Weaver and Devotee of Other Fiber Arts

  2. monsteryarns says:

    Looking forward to it!


  3. I had a difficult time figuring out the abbreviations used, but got help from some multi-lingual knitters. Then it “clicked.” I think it’s a brilliant way to write patterns (at least the simpler ones). A couple more blogs and examples to follow. 🙂


  4. I am doing a follow up post (or 2). I love this “reductionist style, though I am sure many will not. 🙂


  5. Hmmm, I am not sure there is a u oversaw knitting ‘truth,’ 🙂 though I think the centrality of a certain style of knitting or of patter construction is very individual. I am in the process of merging the three main schools of pattern constructing and look forward to readers’ I put when I post it … I hope next post. 🙂


  6. monsteryarns says:

    I like this as rather than turning on to automatic and just worrying about row and stitch counting, the pattern actually draws you in and makes you think. Double thumbs up.


  7. cleo14 says:

    A shorter pattern is definitely more convenient. The schematics look simple to understand (if you know German) and Connie’s description seems very in depth yet clear. Wow.


  8. This is knitting geekery at its very best. I am enjoying the reductionist knitting pattern series of posts immensely. It feels like we are heading toward discovering some absolute knitterly Truth that will transcend language and culture…oh my! I can’t wait for the next installment.


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