Robin Stroot: Manufacturing ‘log’ can note changes in models | Opinion

Artisans often keep notes of items made and worn or given as gifts. Spinners (those who spin the fibers into yarn) will keep a log of the specific fibers (eg, what type of animal fiber, dyeing process used to dye the fiber).

One of the reasons a craftsman might keep a journal is to make specific notes about how the project was done, the model used, and any specific adjustments to the model. I often use sticky notes to make my pattern notes/modifications. I often take a flat knitting pattern (made in pieces) and adapt it to knit in the round, i.e. with as few seams as possible.

When the project is finished, I take a photo and put a copy of the photo with the pattern. That way, if I want to redo the project, I have my personal adaptations written down and attached to the pattern. If you’re like me, you take a lot of pictures with your cell phone. Just be sure to use a SIM card in your phone or back up your photos to a computer or other storage application. (Photo SIM cards may not come automatically with your mobile phone. You may need to purchase a photo SIM card separately.)

Many years ago, my late mother-in-law showed me a collection of photos of all her completed sewing projects. This was at a time when a camera with instant print photos was popular. You were taking a photo and thick paper was coming out of the camera. We watched the image slowly develop on the surface of the paper. No need to take the roll of film to develop in store. The other benefit of instant-on photos was that if the photo was out of focus (or someone’s eyes were closed), you could immediately take another one to get the perfect shot.

One of the reasons my late mother-in-law kept the picture journal was to keep track of the various projects she had done, especially fiber goods for her grandchildren. She made afghans, sweaters and hat sets, as well as toys for her grandchildren. She took notes that accompanied the photo, on the type of yarn and the pattern (including which magazine or book contained said pattern). She also kept a written journal with her craft projects. (That was long before we used our cell phones to keep track of these things.) When she died, I inherited many of her knitting/crochet magazines and books. I still come across models with their own notes written in the margins. I’ve even come across a few custom knitting patterns made especially for my own kids. Each gift is a special reminder of how much she loved crafts, especially for her family members. Her picture diary reminded her of every item she lovingly knitted and shared.

About Tracy G. Larimore

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