Day 9 :: Writing Shorthand Pattern Notes

This is Day 9 of the 31 Days of Amigurumi. This 31 day series is full of how-to's for designing and creating your very own amigurumi. Whether you're a beginner at ami's or just need help on a certain technique, there's something here for everyone.

31 Days of Amigurumi is the place to learn all about creating your own Amigurumi. 

Before we get to the crochet portion of this series we have one more post to set you up for success. Today we are going to talk about writing out your pattern notes. The best way to do this is to use what I call shorthand.

Like I said yesterday, I like to use the blank areas on my pattern sketch to write out my notes, so I don't always have enough space to write my notes out fully. I don't know about you, but when I'm crocheting I don't usually wanna stop, especially not long enough to write any lengthy amount of notes.

Here is how I write my notes, but I want to first let you know that you don't have to do this! Find something that works for you! However you best understand it and want to write it then by all means do that. there are several ways you can go about taking notes for your work, but in the end you have to be able to understand what you wrote when it comes time to recreate that ingenious design you started. :D

Writing Shorthand Notes

Ok, so for me, I find it easiest to write my shorthand notes using diagram symbols. But why, you might ask. Well that's because I already know the diagram symbols for crochet and it's easiest for me. If I post a picture online of my work then chances are that most people might not understand what I wrote enough to steal my work. Hence this photo from last week.

I don't know if you noticed the X's and the V's in my notes? These are diagram symbols for sc's and inc's. If I post this photo on my instagram or in a crochet group then I usually rest assured that people don't understand what it says. Of course now that I'm posting this here on my blog and telling all my secrets to you, that's ok by me. ;)  You can of course use it without any problems. Here are two different keys you can use to write your crochet in shorthand.

This one is for the diagram symbols I was talking about. You can write the letters like you see or the actual symbols. For a more extensive list of diagram symbols you can do a google search.

If the diagram symbols are too much for you or maybe you just don't want to learn an entirely new symbol then you can always use the first initial of the stitch you want to write. That is a super easy way to go about it as well.

How am I supposed to use these?

This part might take some getting use to. A normal round of pattern might be written kinda like this.

Rnd 1: make a ML and sc 6 into the loop.
Rnd 2: inc in each stitch around
Rnd 3: (sc, inc) around
Rnd 4: (sc 2, inc) around
...and so on.

When I write in shorthand I would write it like this.

ML, 6X
(X, V)
(2X, V)
...and whatever else there would be.

See the difference in the shorthand? It's much briefer. I don't worry about writing out my rows, because personally I don't need them as long as I'm writing them vertically this way. In round two I only wrote increase, because I know that if that's the only stitch then it's repeated around. This also goes for the other rounds. The parentheses show me that I repeat what's in them around. I don't always use them unless there are other stitches that won't be repeated.

You can always simplify rows as well. For instance if you had to sc for rounds 6 through 10 or something then just write 5 rounds of single crochet. In abbreviation I would write "5 rnds X". Does that make sense?

Remember the sketch from above? On the right side next to the hand You might see some more familiar pattern notes. This is where your personal needs comes in to play. For things that require special instructions, like maybe the feet or the hands, you can write it out however you best understand it.

Lets go over a more difficult round for some more practice. How would you write this row?

Rnd 8: sc in next 6, sc dec 6 times, sc in last 6 sts.

First break it down. The first part says sc in next 6, so that's just 6 sc's so that would just be 6X. The next part says sc dec 6 times, so that's just 6 A (or an inverted V). The next part then says sc in last 6 sts, so that's 6X again. That would all be written as such...

6X, 6A, 6X

...super simple!

So that seems to be it for my lesson on shorthanding your notes! I hope it's easy to understand, but of course if you have ANY questions then please feel free to leave a comment or message me on any of my social media platforms. Thanks for being here.

Tomorrow we are going to talk about the good stuff, and that's crocheting balls and ovals. this is great for beginners who are just now getting in to amigurumi or want to learn how these shapes are created. There's lots more info to come! Stay tuned! :D

Happy crocheting,
~Chassity O.

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