Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Lily Chin is SO RIGHT

At CGOA's Chain Link conference (July '06 Valley Forge PA), I took a 2-day, 12-hour designing workshop with Lily. It's one of the best, if not THE best thing I've ever done. One of the tips I learned was to use giant graph paper that comes on a giant easel pad from office supply stores. Each page is marked lightly with 1-inch squares.

THANKS TO THIS TIP, I GOT A SET-IN SLEEVE RIGHT ON THE FIRST TRY! You know, those weird-shaped sleeve pieces that have sleeve caps, and the calculations for them can be as mathematically esoteric as you want them to be? I was resigned to needing 3+ tries before getting it right so I put it off until I had the necessary patience.

Well, not only did I use the graph paper to sketch a rudimentary sleeve-cap-looking curve freehand AND IT WORKED, I could sit in my comfy chair crocheting it up the whole time while the sketch stayed on the floor at my feet. If you want to, you could crochet a bit then see how the shape is matching up to your sketch, because on 1" graph paper it becomes a paper pattern; BUT DON'T GET UP! Merely glance at your sketch, and the gauge info you've written next to it, and you can see: hmmm, looks like the sleeve cap curve is now about 8 squares (inches) wide, and 2 more stitch pattern repeats should bring the next row up to 8".

WHEN I DID GET UP, my piece magically matched my sketch. BEST OF ALL, I tried seaming it to the body of the sweater and it looks great! Like I spent a lifetime designing set-in sleeves just so that this one could come out looking effortlessly chic!

Wish I could show ya a pic of the project but it's under contract. Is it a tantalizing revelation that it involves a certain excess of collar?


  1. Woohoo! I'm taking a shorter version of this class at TNNA, I can't wait.

  2. Anonymous11:41 AM

    That's a fantastic tip! Thanks for sharing!! :)

  3. I wanted to take Lily's class but when I finally decided I could go to Chain Link the class was all filled up! I hope she's there again this year. Thanks for all the tips, Vashti!

  4. You're welcome, I'm still applying new tips from that workshop. Lily will be teaching at the July '07 Chain Link conference but I don't remember if she'll be offering that workshop again.
    Amy, I'm going to be watching your blog for posts from TNNA because I won't be able to go until June!

  5. Future Vashti here (2012)...I see that the original link to the 1"-grid easel pad is broken. When I looked online, I found some of these at Amazon--Adams brand--but $36 for 100 sheets seems pricier than I remember paying locally at Office Depot, or think I should pay! So look in your local office supply store, or CHECK THIS OUT: a big ROLL of it at an educator's supply outlet: Jumbo Graph Paper Roll 1 Inch 200' Roll [105827] - $38.99 : Educators Outlet, Buy More For Less .


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