Keeping Track of Hundreds of Patterns

How do you keep track of your patterns? Are you digital and just store them on your computer/phone/tablet? Or, are you like me, and you prefer working off a printed pattern – printed so that you can highlight and mark it up to your heart’s content.

If you’re like me, and you’ve printed off your fair share of patterns, then you might also be like me and are starting to struggle with trying to find a pattern when you want to repeat it.

I keep my patterns in journals, smashbook style. I cut and paste them into spiral ring notebooks, and there I can make my own notes, keep track of sizes, if any mods were made for something that needs to be made twice (like sleeves), and I can also write out any improv patterns I might have tried my hand at. I’ve been using these for almost a decade. Safe to say, this is my method, and, for me, it works.

The glitch in the system comes when I want to repeat a pattern, which is what happened this weekend. I had some amazing Christmas coloured self striping yarn, which I knew would make amazing ornaments. The pattern I’ve used a handful of times is Balls Up ! (RAV LINK) by General Hogbuffer – a few metres of left over sock yarn, a 3″ Styrofoam ball, and a few hours of knitting, and you have a simple ornament for the Christmas tree.

But, the question was, what journal is that pattern in?

So, before settling in to knit the ornament, I turned to a project that was long overdue – inventorying my knitting journals. I created a Google Sheet where along the top, I have each knitting journal, and down each column is a list of which patterns are in that journal. I’ve highlighted the patterns that I know I’ve made time and time again so that they are easier to find. By making it a Google Sheet, I can access it from different devices.

Oh, and I found the pattern. It was in Knitting Journal 5.

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