Friday, June 26, 2009

My unpopular opinion

This opinion is not always popular amongst some in the knitting and crocheting communities. Though I don't believe many people will venture to my blog here and read this, I am still going to do a write up on it.

This is what I think of the way a lot of knitters/crocheters act about copyrights...

I find it over the top and downright stupid. In fact, I have a former friend who acts as uneducated and extreme about this issue as some of the moderators of certain communities do. And by no means can you call me a thief, because that isn't the case in any sense. Just because I have this opinion does not make me a thief or a cheater.

There's something about working from patterns that just downright pisses some people off, whether they knit or crochet or not. The former friend I mentioned doesn't do either one, and she was very upset that I had crocheted a few amigurumi toys based on patterns in a book I purchased and later sold them to people. The fact is, I had no real use or place for those toys, but the people I sold them to did. I see no point in keeping the items when I've been offered money for them. The money paid for the materials I used to make the toys and for the time I spent in making them. I figure, in that former friend's case, that it was jealousy that caused her reaction. I can't say I know what's up the butts of the people who really do know how to crochet or knit, though.

My first run in with what I like to call a copyright extremist is when I shared a scan of an old Red Heart flier I got from one of those tablets of free patterns you see in retail stores like Walmart. What made it all the more ridiculous is that the pattern was literally for a simple granny square pattern. Red Heart DOES NOT own any kind of rights to the granny square, and they never will. Granny squares have been around since forever, and probably nobody even knows who made them up. Also, those fliers are FREE to the public. Red Heart, or whatever company it's from, puts those out in hopes of luring you into buying their yarn to make that project with. It's a marketing tactic. If you choose to share the pattern, they won't sue you over it. They have better things to do with their money than try to sue personally owned websites or individuals over the distribution of free fliers. They probably LIKE it when you share those free fliers because you just convinced someone else to buy their yarn to make that project with. If you really do think that your website will get sued because of something like that, then you're full of yourself and you're too busy thinking you're the shit to realize you're not worth jack to these corporations. Get over yourself.

There was another case in which I saw this that comes to mind right now. It was a pattern I saw somewhere. It's a free pattern, and I copied it down. It's for a "button tab hat". The pattern is extremely simple, and I could have figured it out on my own if I had the gumption to do so. At the end of the pattern, however, there are explicit warnings not to reproduce the hat for sale. Not even a week after copying that pattern did I see the same style of hat in my LYS. In fact, a FREE PATTERN for the hat was being offered to anyone who purchased the yarn that was used to make it with. And I've seen other similar style hats for sale by people who created them from their "own pattern".

You can't copyright a spiral. You can't copyright a knit or a purl - a double crochet or a single crochet. These things are just basic parts of how knitting and crocheting is done. They create certain shapes, regardless of who does the stitch work. The concept to create a doll's head or a ribbed scarf can't be copyrighted.

And then there's just style. Everybody has it. You can copy a pattern as closely as you possibly can, but your own personal style WILL show in it in some way or another. In the amigurumis I made, I could see my own style very easily. When people saw my dolls, they KNEW that I had made them just by how they looked. What's more is that I don't follow patterns 100%. A lot of the time I'll veer off in some other direction with it to add my own flare. So the finished product is more like an inspiration worked from a base rather than something copied exactly from the words in a book.

Not everything I create comes from a pattern, either. I've worked hard to build the skills necessary to make my own designs. But, even at that, I see nothing wrong with working from a pattern if I like what that pattern makes.

So, yes. I DO distribute free patterns, both online and in real life, and I DO sell work created from patterns I find here and there. And there's no reason to freak out and have a stroke over it, either. So just chill the hell out, would you?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Another tam hat

I've been really into tam hats. Which is funny, because I used to hate hats and had no desire to make any. Tam hats and berets seem to be popular right now, though, and after having seen a couple, I got on a kick of knitting and crocheting them. I'm faster at crocheting, so those are the hats I've finished first, but I do have knitted tams on my needles, too.

I tried this pattern before, but it didn't turn out right somehow. I thought it might be the kind of yarn I used or that I couldn't find the hook the pattern specified anywhere, so I used one that was a millimeter larger. I ripped out the first one, then tried again with some Lion Brand Homespun yarn instead. I liked this result MUCH better.

With these kinds of hats, I prefer something bigger and flopper, so I like this one better than the wool one I posted about earlier, even though it's not as soft and bouncy, really.

In truth, I didn't follow the pattern very well... I ended up going it alone on the second row or so, but if you want to make a similar hat for yourself, the original pattern is located here:

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Ribbed Tam Hat

I have a health condition that has caused my hair to thin out. It's been affecting me since I was a teenager, and I figure it'll only keep getting worse despite all my efforts. But rather than despair over it, I'm looking for a silver lining. Hey, it's an excuse to knit and crochet lots of cute hats, right? ;)

For this hat, I used this free pattern:
I did, however, change the first few rows because I didn't like how they were turning out. It wasn't very drastic, though.

Here's how it turned out:

I look a little dejected in the first photo because I was tired and had just gotten home from work... and someone had hurt my feelings.

I forgot to take a picture of it while it was blocking, so I don't have a picture of the very top of it. But it looks very much like the top view photo shown with the pattern I linked to. My only gripe is that after blocking it, it left a "ridge" along the side that makes it look lumpy. Not really much I can do about that, though. Even though that happened, it still looks better over all after having been blocked.

I used a 100% wool yarn called Luxor, which is an Italian yarn. It's really light and soft. I love it! Wish it was sold in the States. I happened to find 2 balls of it at a thrift shop.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Running Roses

I have a lot of yarn. A LOT of it. I've been trying to bust out my stash for two years now. One of the results of that stash busting endeavor is this bedspread:

It turned out prettier than I had expected it to. It's basically just 140 tri-colored granny squares joined together with "lattice". I liked it so much that it's been on my bed ever since it was made.

Somehow, I expect to be making one of these for my mom when she moves up here this summer...

Monday, March 23, 2009

Cloud Nine

It's been quite some time since I've posted any of my finished work here, so I decided I would start off getting caught up by posting one of my favorite shawls. I've done very few shawls, though I am planning to make more. You could say I've "grown up" when it comes to my yarn craft, I suppose. I want to make wearable and useful items now, rather than so many blankets and toys. This shawl was done for a friend of mine as a commission some time ago.

The yarn I used here was from Hobby Lobby. It's Yarn Bee's Lambie Pie. Personally, I would never buy this yarn for myself. While it's cuddly soft and has cute little boing-boing curls in it, it's a devil to work with. You can't see your stitching and the curls get tangled up with each other, so if you make a mistake, it's almost impossible to take back out again. In the end, it turned out alright.

I almost want to make another shawl like this one for myself. But I can't think of what yarn I would want to use for it. I like the fluffy look and feel, but I hate working with that stuff!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Work, work, work!

Lately, I've been working quite a lot. There's an up and a down to that. The upside is that I make more income. The downside is that I don't have a lot of time to spend on doing the crafty things I love to do.

I do have things I would like to post about, but they'll have to wait for now. Hopefully my hours will slack off a little bit. But not *too* much.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Still Hookin'!

It's been a long time since I've updated my blog, which I do apologize for. I'll be working on some things to post here pretty soon, I hope.

I wanted to say thank you to everyone who has used my patterns. I noticed that my 8-pointed round ripple is listed in the pattern library on Ravelry! I hope that everyone is enjoying it. I did make a correction to that pattern in row #5. Thankfully it doesn't seem like the mistake affected anyone too much.

I've taken up knitting recently, so I may be adding some of those types of projects, too. I have something in mind concerning the combination of knitting and crochet for a scarf. If I can make it work, I'll work out a pattern and post it here for anybody who would like to make it.

Thanks for coming by my blog!