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New Easy-to-Follow Patterns for Knit and Crochet Projects!

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New Easy-to-Follow Patterns for Knit and Crochet Projects!

We’ve developed a new system for bringing you easy-to-follow patterns for knit and crochet projects. The new pattern style features simple diagrams and less text, plus simplified written instructions so you can both visualize and understand each step.

We believe that you’ll find these patterns to be the easiest you’ll ever use, so you can knit and crochet with newfound confidence.

But don’t just take our word for it … below is a sampling of three popular patterns written in the new style. Click on the image or name and you’ll be taken to a PDF file featuring the new pattern style. Give it a try, start creating the easy way today!

Crochet Simple Shrug
Open as a webpage
Level 2 Easy Knit Poncho
Open as a webpage
Knit Cromwell Court Afghan
Open as a webpage

We’d love to hear your opinion of this new style of pattern writing, so please leave a comment below.

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  • I find following the diagrams for crochet difficult as I am left handed and the rows start for right handers and proceed in the wrong direction for me. I crochet left to right. The diagrams go from right to left.

    • I am also left handed, so I print out the diagrams backwards! Most printer drivers have a setting for “mirror” printing.

    • Also a ‘leftie’, I finally taught myself to crochet just a few years ago, at age 60+, by using the book ‘I Can’t Believe I’m Crocheting’ published by Leisure Arts. They have right- & left-handed instructions side by side, with pictures! Think it’s still available from Amazon!

      • Another leftie here, my mom taught me to crochet by mirroring what she did right-handed, and it seemed to work. I do like the new style – always got lost going back and forth between directions and the work in hand with traditional patterns, so I ended up making my own as I went along, and it never turned out very well. The shrug is actually something I tried to do “on my own” once before, and unravelled the whole thing once I was done. It was too bulky and heavy. Started this pattern a few minutes ago, and it looks like exactly what I had in mind. One caveat: for a true beginner, you need to explain “back loop” technique more clearly. This pattern assumes knowledge that may not belong to the “beginner” category.

    • Like other left-handed people, finding a way over the years to learn a new craft or hobby can be a challenge. As for crochet, the idea “just watch me and mirror me” just made no sense, and only served to frustrate me. So I crochet right-handed. People are surprised to see me writing or eating, then pick up hook and yarn and do the opposite.

      • I too am a lefty who was young and unable to “just watch and mirror me”. So I learned right-handed.

    • Join the CROCHET CROWD on Facebook … Almost all patterns are free and Mikey does videos for both left & right handed crocheters …

      This link shows the pictures in both right handed and left handed as I am left handed also this is great. Enjoy!

  • I learned to single crochet in 2005 but that was my one and only stitch, and I couldn’t read patterns at all. Lol, I became very good at sc although the best I could do was a simple, patternless scarf.

    In late September (2014) someone gave me a huge bag of ‘bin ends’ and the gift got me determined to really learn crochet. Practice makes perfect and I’m getting there but patterns are still a little iffy for me – it takes me forever to get through patterns marked for beginners. But this new way of writing patterns is fab and I ‘got’ it first read through! I do feel as though I could make this crocheted shrug without any headache…I’m headed out to the shops to find an N hook and some yarn that comes close to Homespun (very hard to find where I live) weight.

    I live in the UK now and finding Lion Brand yarn is next to impossible (sniffle) but this pattern has inspired me. I will find a way to get my fav yarn over here, and I will be looking for more of these patterns. Easy to read and follow, and the end result is something on trend to wear. Thank-you! I am so glad one of the things I did before leaving the US was signing up for the e-newsletter or I would never have known about this!

    • Try Deramores in the UK they have a good selection of Lion Brand yarns to buy online.

      • Thank-you for the link! AmazonUK carries a modest selection too, but I think I’m going to look into buying directly from here – if HRMC doesn’t hold me up with huge customs fees, that is! I’ve got Deramores open on another window and will do some number running to see which offers the better pricing for me. Thank-you again!

    • Try Banyan Tree yarns in a search engine. They are based in the UK and stock all the Lion Brand Yarns. I get all my wool from them for Lion Brand patterns. They are cheap on postage and quick to post aswell, so waiting time is minimal for online shopping.

      • Thank-you – bookmarked and will probably give them a try after the New Year:)

  • STEP 3

    Ch 1, turn, working in back loops only, sc in each sc


    Repeat Row 2 until piece measures about 38 in.

    (96.5 cm) from beginning.

    I get what you mean but it’s not very clear, You have written step 3, then start talking about ch1, but only mentioned it’s row 2 after the fact.

    • Ch1 is the turning chain done at the end of every row. Ch1 for sc, ch2 for double, and so on. You’ll have one loop on your hook BEFORE you do the turning chain, so when you do a ch1 for a sc turning chain, you’ll actually have TWO loops on your hook. Took me forever to ‘get’ that:)

  • Love the new directions for the patterns. Much easier to understand with diagrams in lieu of just text directions. Way to go Lionbrand!

  • I agree with you HappyHarriett! I couldn’t open the link either!

  • I am currently making the simple shrug and looked at that “new” pattern. This idea is genius!

    My mother always crocheted until she developed macular degeneration. Her last project was a blanket for my first grandchild. When the second was expected, I realized that if she were to have a grandmother-produced blanket, the job would be up to me, and I’d better learn to crochet. Because my mother could not see well enough to help me, I called on friends and the Internet. Even the smallest things were puzzling to me in the beginning, so I was happy to see your illustration of “the second chaIn from the hook.” That will certainly be of aid to a beginner.

    I look forward to following a much more complicated pattern written (and illustrated) in this clear and clever way!

  • I am a long time knitter and a wannabe hooker. Sure I have known the crochet sts for years but and this is the big BUT if I have trouble reading a chart and putting the sts together. The thing that helps me the very most are pictures along with charts. Having a picture of the steps allows me to see where the hook was placed and where the new st is added.
    I like your new pattern style but this is a very simple pattern how does it look for something a little harder like a blanket with a variety of sts. I just finished a large granny square blanket – large in that it is a single square gone very big. And am working on a smaller granny blanket with 4 different sizes of squares. Even with these 2 blankets figured out I still feel confused looking at patterns without pictures.
    Can’t wait to see what other patterns look like in your new style.
    Ps like that there are clear schematics to help with the sewing up.

    • The layout is new and fresh-looking, that’s for sure. Much easier to read.

      However, the new setup will be much more difficult to print, and use more ink.

      If there was a way to turn off the diagrams for printing, that would be helpful.

      Also, it would be interesting to see an example of a much more complicated pattern in this new style.

      Thanks for making the effort to update the patterns.


      • I agree – would like to be able to block diagrams I don’t need to see on the pattern to order to save paper and ink.

  • Hello! I have only learned to crochet about two years ago and now definitely have a knack for it. I love the way your pattern is – simple and to the point! Bravo!

  • I have followed Lion Brand patterns in the past without problem, but I like the addition of the diagrams. I can see this being useful for difficult patterns, in particular. Thank you for the update!

  • I think it’s a great improvement over traditional pattern instructions. Hope you continue with it.
    I agree with the poster that said it might be a nice to have the option to print it without the diagrams.

  • I have been crocheting for many years and do a lot of different stitches. This new style of showing the pattern in a diagram will be a godsend for many, even those of us who have a bit more experience. Looking forward to seeing what you come up with in the future. Kudos!

  • I understand it perfectly but then again I’ve been crocheting since I was nine and I’m now 53 the pictures should give anyone who is a beginner the

  • I actually understood the pattern! I may get brave and attempt it. I’m a knitter but each time I tried to crotchet I failed miserably…I didn’t understand the instructions. The only bit I’m not ‘getting’ on your pattern is chaining into back loop? Can someone advise? Other then that, I was able to clearly understand it for the first time ever! I hope you continue to use that method and congratulations!

    • When crocheting a row the normal thing is to put the hook under both top loops. The front loop is closest to you, the back loop is the loop away from you. So, by crocheting in the back loop, you put the hook under the back loop only. It creates a ribbed or ridged appearance.

  • Looking at the ‘new’ directions, my take on it says that Step 3 could read ‘repeat step 3 until…’. ‘Repeating row 2′ makes no sense. I’ve been crocheting over 50 years with European, American, British and diagrammed patterns and now use YouTube videos (a Godsend!!). Success comes with experience. And not stressing over having to frog back. Even the best pattern writers forget some little item of info that makes or breaks a project, every so often.
    I would also second The CrochetCrowds’ Mikey’s video tutorials as an extremely valuable resource, as are the Stitch a Day newsletters and website (sorry, forgot the link).

  • I like the new way these patterns are laid out with the corresponding diagrams. Especially the turning row diagrams as it clearly shows which stitch you need to be going into. Would it be too difficult to have a link on the pattern for left handers to click on to get the instructions/diagrams in the left hand style. That way everybody has the chance to try the pattern and be confident in doing so. If the pattern is in right hand only and they are left handed and new to crochet it could put them off having a go!

  • I like the new format but it is really a lot to print out and store in a file. I don’t like the option of printing without pictures because that defeats the purpose of the new format. Rather, could you not spread it out so much over the page whenever it looks like the pattern is going over four pages (or two back to back printed pages). Thanks for asking. Love your efforts!

  • Will you be updating all of your current patterns like this? I love the new layout, very easy to read and follow. I am an avid user of your crochet patterns and would like to have the new format for some of the patterns that I have currently saved to my favorites on the Lion Brand app!!

  • I think the new pattern format is great, very easy to follow. One thing missing is what size yarn is used (the #) like bulky is a 5 or 6, regular is 4. I think homespun is bulky but don’t remember. I have lots of leftover yarn and it just makes it easier to use yarn I already have.

  • I am a lefties also and find the diagrams zero help at all.Evn if I was “the other handed” I do not think I would use them either.

  • amp
    I, too am a leftie and looking at the diagrams would not help me. there is a program some groups and designers use to show how to do the instructions left-handed. It must be easy to get as a lot of them add it to patterns. You should do this.

  • Very good! This will help with my style of teaching! Students get to learn 3 styles of crochet, visually (teacher), symbolic (charts), and written (traditional) Thank you!

  • I am a highly experienced crocheter and have taught several people to crochet. I think the illustrations will greatly assist beginning crocheters. I look forward to see your new directions for more advanced techniques. I would love to learn a few new tricks!

  • Big improvement on previous style.. With this, your patterns will finally start to reflect the user-friendly and welcoming attitude of the rest of Lion Brand. With the old style, I could sometimes imagine I heard the strict impatience of an experienced crafter for a novice. The addition of more diagrams is a blessing, too. THANK YOU!

  • While this might be good for some people, I personally don’t like it. If you do this for all your patterns I hope you make it so we can choose what version we want. I looked at all 3 patterns and I don’t need a diagram to get how to do them.

  • I made this pattern some time ago with Heartland type yarn. It is so soft and comfy. I need to make another one.

  • I reviewed the knit poncho and afghan patterns. Liked the poncho, graphics and explanations seemed easy enough for most inexperienced knitters. However I did not have the same feeling about the afghan pattern. The written part was no different from any other pattern I have seen, and I found the drawings irrelevant, unhelpful. (By the way, I have been knitting for 50+ years. Perhaps a newer knitter might find more value in the drawings included in the afghan pattern).

  • Could you include a link to buy the yarn and hooks?

    • If you click on the pattern you would like to make, scroll down to the materials section and you will be able to directly add the materials to a shopping cart. Hope this helps.

  • I think this may be useful – but in the pattern of the Shrug, you give instruction called Step 3 but you fail to indicate that this is Row 2 – next you instruct to repeat Row 2 without our seeing anything called Row 2

  • I don’t like the change at all. If all patterns are this way I won’t be using patterns from Lion Brand any longer.

  • I thought these were awesome. I believe the diagrams would encourage beginners

  • I agree with Iris in regards to the shrug pattern. If Step 3 started with the words “Row 2:” as Step
    2 starts with the words “Row 1:” It would avoid any confusion about what the pattern is asking you to do.

    Also, the picture of the shrug on the web site is very attractive to me and something I would definitely want to make. The downloaded pattern shows a much different- looking garment. It makes me leery of trying out this pattern for fear I will not end up with the shrug I was attracted to
    from the blog picture.

  • I’m not good at following diagrams, and do much better with the old-fashioned written directions. That said, I applaud that you have added the new style for those who are just beginning in the crafting, and also those who may be better at crafting than reading. Just please don’t do away with the non-diagram patterns.

  • loving the new way of doing patterns… is almost exactly how i translate patterns before I attempt to knit/crochet. 🙂

  • I prefer printed but getting both like shrug shows is interesting…or it could be a choice thing..push this button for printed and one for diagrams and one for both…..

  • not only am I a left-hander but also a mirror dyslexic. My mom is ambidextrious and tried using both hands to teach me, but without any luck. I found loom knitting 6 years ago and I love it.

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