View Full Version : Pattern Writing For Math IDIOTS

saracidaltendencies

04-09-2009, 02:10 PM

Does anyone know of a book or resource that would be good for someone whose math skills are completely embarrassing yet wants to write out their own patterns?

I really want to create my own pattern for a tank top/camisole with waist shaping...I did find a site that tells you how to figure waist shaping, but, she started throwing out so many numbers and multiply this or divide that, subtract this, add that and I just couldn't follow....Seriously, when I start seeing so many numbers and mathematical instructions, no matter how hard I try not to, I completely tune it out...I don't have the patience to follow along.

I've tried searching for patterns online, but, I just cannot find exactly what I want...I sketched out a design that I really like but just thinking about having to do the math is too overwhelming...Math is not and never has been my strong point.

I can accept some simple math (like 2+2...haha) but anything seemingly complicated just makes my head spin.

What's the best way for a math idiot to learn how to figure out their own design?

Thanks!

Jan in CA

04-09-2009, 02:32 PM

Oh I hear you.. math is not my friend either. I've learned over the years to figure some things out.. percentages for instance - but I do it my own way. :teehee:

I've toyed with the idea of getting this software, but haven't. I see they have a demo version which might help decide.

http://www.knittingsoftware.com/knittingmathwizard.htm

mwhite

04-09-2009, 02:36 PM

I don't know of any books....best advice: one step at the time!

Alot has to do with multiplication so that is the biggest step and force to overcome.... Remember those aptitude tests we had in grade school? You know the ones that say:

How many minutes does it take Mary to get to Demonica's house if she's going 25mph on her bike and Demonica lives 43.5 miles away????

Geesh, hated those...

saracidaltendencies

04-09-2009, 02:37 PM

hahaha...Mhmm, I hated those dumb word problems too! :teehee:

saracidaltendencies

04-09-2009, 02:38 PM

Oh I hear you.. math is not my friend either. I've learned over the years to figure some things out.. percentages for instance - but I do it my own way. :teehee:

I've toyed with the idea of getting this software, but haven't. I see they have a demo version which might help decide.

http://www.knittingsoftware.com/knittingmathwizard.htm

Oooh, thank you, Jan, and, I have a b-day coming up, maybe hubby can get it for me! :teehee:

mwhite

04-09-2009, 02:45 PM

Another thing...I used to consider myself a COMPLETE math idiot but strangely enough, sewing and knitting have greatly improved my math skills and I even understand Pi!

Well you need to be able to do simple math or you'll never get your size right with your guage.

Sweater Design in Plain English by Maggie Righetti is good and it explains the math.

If you can design a sweater you can do anything.

I'd say with that book you'd be able to take the design part and easily modify one of her "patterns" (which are more like "how to's") and come up with a top.

My sister also tunes out if I tell her something is algebra, yet she's able to do it if she doesn't think of it as math.

Most of the math is,

Your gauge = 4 stitches to the inch.

You need 24 inches. 4x24= 96 stitches

Now you need 32" or 8" more so you need to increase 4x8=32 (edited to add "32 stitches not inches" I guess it coming out the same as needed inches threw me off).

Increasing evenly over one row is more difficult. You have to think of the spaces instead of the stitches.

You could always try it on as you go. You can also draw it on graph paper and count (also described in the above book).

saracidaltendencies

04-09-2009, 03:31 PM

...and I even understand Pi!

That's what you put in an oven and bake, right?? :roflhard:

mwhite

04-09-2009, 03:37 PM

Yeah and just how many slices will you have if the outer radius of the slice is 3" on a 9" pi??? :teehee:

Jan in CA

04-09-2009, 03:52 PM

Yeah and just how many slices will you have if the outer radius of the slice is 3" on a 9" pi??? :teehee:

:shock: :passedout:

Oooh, thank you, Jan, and, I have a b-day coming up, maybe hubby can get it for me! :teehee:

Get the demo first to see if it's worthwhile. I haven't tried it yet, but I downloaded the demo this morning.

Anarfea

04-09-2009, 05:06 PM

I'm completely math phobic as well. In fact, I was reading somewhere recently that there is in fact such a thing as a math phobia and people who are afraid of math really do have their brains shut down when they look at it...

More relevent to you: Debbie Stroller has a lot of good stuff at the beginning of "Stitch and Bitch Nation" where she talks about modifying patterns and she breaks down the math for calculating, among other things, waist shaping, so that you can figure out your guage and how many stiches you need to increase over how many rows. I found her explanation pretty unintimidating.

saracidaltendencies

04-09-2009, 10:43 PM

Sweet! And, I already own SnB Nation! I never looked at anything but the patterns though :teehee:

saracidaltendencies

04-09-2009, 10:45 PM

Yeah and just how many slices will you have if the outer radius of the slice is 3" on a 9" pi??? :teehee:

:roflhard::roflhard::roflhard:

Uh.....:shrug::whoosh::out::teehee:

mwhite

04-10-2009, 07:35 AM

Diameter x 3.1416(Pi) = circumference

Circumference divided by size of slice (9) equals number of slices per pie

9 x 3.1416 =28.2744 divided by 3 = 9.4248, roughly 9-1/2 slices per pie

If you're knitting a doily project and have 6 sts per inch...

9(diameter of doily) x 3.1416 = 28.2744 (number of inches in circumference)

28.2744 x 6(sts per inch) = 169.6464 (roughly 170 sts)

dustinac

04-10-2009, 08:03 AM

I got two books from the library awhile back and now plan on buying them. The Knitter's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns & The Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns (by Ann Budd)

I thought they really helped on breaking things down, at least for me. I'm another one bad at math but I think knitting has helped my math skills, I think they should teach knitting with math in school...I would have learned more :rofl:

mwhite

04-10-2009, 08:06 AM

I agree or at least could have concentrated more on the needlearts in Home Ec....but remember, the classes were only 50 minutes long... we'd have been more captive audiences though!

dustinac

04-10-2009, 08:22 AM

I agree or at least could have concentrated more on the needlearts in Home Ec....but remember, the classes were only 50 minutes long... we'd have been more captive audiences though!

:thumbsup: very true, I would have listened better...when I got to H.S. they changed it so that our classes were 90 mins...:wall:(we had 4 first semester and then another 4 second semester)...I didn't care for that very much at all...

Mirl56

04-10-2009, 10:42 AM

Yeah and just how many slices will you have if the outer radius of the slice is 3" on a 9" pi??? :teehee:

well, you know about the guy who ordered a pizza pi and asked for it to be sliced into 6 pieces instead of 8 cause he didn't think he could eat 8??

(and to think I've stayed away from this 'thread' cause it had a 4-letter work (MATH) in the name!!)

mwhite

04-10-2009, 12:10 PM

:teehee:

OffJumpsJack

04-10-2009, 01:46 PM

Another thing...I used to consider myself a COMPLETE math idiot but strangely enough, sewing and knitting have greatly improved my math skills and I even understand Pi!

That's what you put in an oven and bake, right?? :roflhard:

Yeah and just how many slices will you have if the outer radius of the slice is 3" on a 9" pi??? :teehee:

:roflhard: :roflhard:

Getting a slice of pi! :roflhard:

I kept getting a left over of 1.26 and thinking that meant ten slices but then realized that is how long the "arc" of crust would be on the partial slice after 9 slices were cut with 3 inch "arcs" (i.e. 3 inch wide slice of the pie.

Now I can use pi on the pies for our family to keep the children from fighting (well at least lessen the chances of if). Most of the time we cut the pizza, pie, or cake in eight slices because it is easy. You divide in half four times; now I can measure the diameter and then divide the circumference by six (two parents and four children) and we each get two pieces (a piece to eat and also peace to share!) :wink:

I can't give advice on doing math because I'm one of those 'classmates' everyone hated in school for ruining the grading curve. :oops:

But billiards (pool) and playing a musical instrument both exercise your brain for math. In fact, if you play billiards, simply watching how the balls react you learn what would take complex geometry equations to figure out on paper.

I think Origami also helps with division...

:oo:

Sorry, I'll stop now before the needles start to fly.

saracidaltendencies

04-10-2009, 05:54 PM

Diameter x 3.1416(Pi) = circumference

Circumference divided by size of slice (9) equals number of slices per pie

9 x 3.1416 =28.2744 divided by 3 = 9.4248, roughly 9-1/2 slices per pie

If you're knitting a doily project and have 6 sts per inch...

9(diameter of doily) x 3.1416 = 28.2744 (number of inches in circumference)

28.2744 x 6(sts per inch) = 169.6464 (roughly 170 sts)

My head is spinning!!! :roflhard:

Jan in CA

04-10-2009, 05:55 PM

My head is spinning!!! :roflhard:

No kidding..and I have doilies before my eyes! :zombie:

saracidaltendencies

04-10-2009, 06:01 PM

I'm completely math phobic as well. In fact, I was reading somewhere recently that there is in fact such a thing as a math phobia and people who are afraid of math really do have their brains shut down when they look at it...

Hmm, I might look into that, that totally describes me! :teehee:

Seriously, it's so bad that shortly after I graduated from high school, I had considered going to the police academy to become a police officer...I was doing some research on it and saw that it was very helpful to have a background in criminal justice before attending the police academy...So, I went to my community college to speak with a counselor about a CJ program and find out what classes I would need to take, and, possibly take the entrance exam. Well, when I was informed there would be math involved with the entrance exam and I would most likely have to take some gen ed math classes, well, I didn't take the entrance exam and never went to college....hahahaha....Yeah, my fear of math is so bad I skipped out on going college :teehee:

saracidaltendencies

04-10-2009, 06:01 PM

No kidding..and I have doilies before my eyes! :zombie:

:rofl:

Quick, put them down before you get hurt!! :roflhard:

mwhite

04-10-2009, 06:27 PM

No kidding..and I have doilies before my eyes! :zombie:

LOL! Silly girls, calculators are wonderful lil things!

My eighth grade algebra teacher passed me just out of pure pity!

I'm tellin ya, working/managing a sewing plant, samplemaking of totebags, aprons and boxer shorts was my algebra teacher. Having to make sure that production stayed up was a big help when it came to time studies.

Time studies is the detail you need to know when you're pricing a job with multiple quantities. I would time each operator as she did her part of the manufactured item during the time study. Adding all the times together would tell me how many minutes each operation took so that I could make a profit. Money was the motivation for learning the math. So if Jane could hem 125 pieces per hour, 125 divided by 60 would tell me how much time to add to the quote, plus all the other operations. Totebags, in production are only worth around $3.49...that's for a large size. Fabric, needles, downtime, thread and all overhead has to be figured in as well. When someone mentions that time is money, this is what they mean.

This is the detail needed to price anything. I'm really glad I don't have to knit in production like the ladies in China!

Jan in CA

04-10-2009, 07:11 PM

:roflhard:

9th grade Algebra 1 class- Feb. 2, 1967:

Me: psssttt whisper, whisper, whisper..

Friend: whisper, whisper...

Me: giggle giggle, whisper, whisper...

Teacher: MISS McGIVERN! (me)

Me: yes

Teacher: Would you like to tell the class what is more important that algerbra right now?

Me: (thinks and decides not to say no) Ummm... It's Groundhog Day..

Teacher: This has nothing to do with algebra so I suggest you face forward and listen!

Me: okay

That sums up my math career... :lol: I have learned how to do a lot of things in my own way and I can usually do pretty well even with knitting math. My biggest problem even with calculators is other than basic stuff, I don't know which numbers to put in first or what function to use to get the answer. So someone telling me to use a calculator does no good unless I know what I'm doing. Kind of like telling a kid to look up pneumonia in the dictionary if they have no clue whether it begins with a P, an N, or an F. :teehee:

SoapDawtahKnitsToo

04-10-2009, 07:13 PM

Hmm, I might look into that, that totally describes me! :teehee:

Seriously, it's so bad that shortly after I graduated from high school, I had considered going to the police academy to become a police officer...I was doing some research on it and saw that it was very helpful to have a background in criminal justice before attending the police academy...So, I went to my community college to speak with a counselor about a CJ program and find out what classes I would need to take, and, possibly take the entrance exam. Well, when I was informed there would be math involved with the entrance exam and I would most likely have to take some gen ed math classes, well, I didn't take the entrance exam and never went to college....hahahaha....Yeah, my fear of math is so bad I skipped out on going college :teehee:

I've been making soap for over 10 years and just started knitting. The math in both are my worst hurdles. I made a chart to follow whenever I formulate a soap recipe but knitting is a whole new animal. I read the past thread about gauge and my eyes crossed, my brain went dead and :roflhard: ...:passedout:

You are not alone :grphug:

I graduated with a dual degree in CJ but had to attend learning disability class in order to get a math waiver after all of that stress, I found out that the waiver has no weight when it comes to taking the entrance exam, nor could it get me into a univeristy so I'm with two degress and no way to get hired. I feel what a waste.

Problems in knitting; how to re-size a pattern. Oh, and that gauge thing too.

Peace and Love,

Joann

mwhite

04-10-2009, 07:18 PM

:So someone telling me to use a calculator does no good unless I know what I'm doing. Kind of like telling a kid to look up pneumonia in the dictionary if they have no clue whether it begins with a P, an N, or an F. :teehee:

This IS the biggest hurdle! Trial and error is a great teacher. Taking it one step at a time helps and getting your brain to put the sequences in order is the key....sometimes the sequences are confusing!

Simply_Renee

04-11-2009, 01:39 AM

Demonica-

I think your answer is "go on to Knitting Help & ask Mary"

:wink:

Jan in CA

04-11-2009, 01:44 AM

Demonica-

I think your answer is "go on to Knitting Help & ask Mary"

:wink:

:roflhard: :thumbsup:

mwhite

04-11-2009, 08:43 AM

:oo: :blush: Dunno about that but one of the reasons knitting is so interesting is the learning and discovery. I think this is true for most anything that involves detail. Don'tcha just love to tackle something new and be able to stand back and admire your handiwork?

saracidaltendencies

04-11-2009, 09:48 PM

Demonica-

I think your answer is "go on to Knitting Help & ask Mary"

:wink:

:teehee:

saracidaltendencies

04-11-2009, 09:49 PM

:oo: :blush: Dunno about that but one of the reasons knitting is so interesting is the learning and discovery. I think this is true for most anything that involves detail. Don'tcha just love to tackle something new and be able to stand back and admire your handiwork?

Indeed, it's a great feeling! I just hope one day I can overcome my math fear and expand my horizons :teehee:

ArtLady1981

04-12-2009, 10:06 AM

I really want to create my own pattern for a tank top/camisole with waist shaping...

SWEATER WIZARD (http://www.knitpicks.com/Sweater+Wizard_AD80006.html)

This program generates schematics and text directions for sweaters customized to the knitter's specifications. Sweaters may be charted for flat or round knitting, using any gauge. Sweater Wizard is an excellent tool for teachers to quickly work up projects and instructions. System requirements: Windows 95, 98, ME, NT, 2000, XP (Vista compatible). Compact Disc.

http://www.knitpicks.com/kpimages/regular/80006.jpg

It creates all 'types' of sweaters and tanks, and with different 'shaping'...such as form fitting, normal fit, loose fit, etc.

I created several summery cami-tanks for my little granddaughters, just recently. They are all printed and ready to go.

The patterns also include schematics, an unheard of nicety these days.

The SWEATER WIZARD is not your designer. You are the DESIGNER, he is your architect. You bring your swatches and designs to the table, he draws up the blueprints for ya.

If you need more information about how SWEATER WIZARD works, let me know!

cheley

04-12-2009, 11:24 AM

Diameter x 3.1416(Pi) = circumference

Circumference divided by size of slice (9) equals number of slices per pie

9 x 3.1416 =28.2744 divided by 3 = 9.4248, roughly 9-1/2 slices per pie

If you're knitting a doily project and have 6 sts per inch...

9(diameter of doily) x 3.1416 = 28.2744 (number of inches in circumference)

28.2744 x 6(sts per inch) = 169.6464 (roughly 170 sts):eyes: :thud: