004 // on paying for knitting patterns

pattern: Jane Hat, by Jane Richmond
yarn: I Love this Yarn! solids in sage green (142 yards)
needles: sizes US 8 / 5.0 mm and 10 / 6.0 mm 16" circular needles
donated to: Chicago Food Pantry

A day or two ago I got a public comment on Ravelry about a pattern I offer for sale. The person commented that they enjoyed the knit, but that the pattern wasn't worth paying for - that they could have figured out how to make it on their own. This person did not send me a message, did not make an effort to discuss this with me privately; she just put that out there publicly.

While the pattern is not the most difficult or technical out there, I took the time to figure out the best gauge, needles, and such for the pattern to make it turn out just right; I took the time to write the pattern out, have a few folks test knit it, and even send a few free finished versions to folks to see if it was wearable; I took the time to put the pattern out there, promote it and share it.

That this person said my efforts were "not worth it" hurt me. Most patterns for purchase are written by folks who are supplementing their full-time income or trying to bring a bit more money into their households. They are written by folks who spend a great deal of time figuring their patterns out, and are put into the world with a whole lot of love.

I pay for patterns all the time, and some of them (a very rare few) don't meet expectations. Should my pattern in question be offered for free? That's something I'll have to look at going forward. But I would NEVER have publicly commented like this on a pattern without first seeking out the private audience of the pattern-writer.

Note to folks who purchase patterns - the people who write these patterns are just that. People. We put a lot of time and effort into what we're doing, whether we do it full time, part time, or just as a hobby. If you are not satisfied, that is your deal, but give the pattern-writer the courtesy of attempting to contact them privately, kay?


  1. You are 100 % right! That was rude of that person to do so. You are certainly entitled to offer your patterns for sale, just as this person has the right to buy it or not. I can never understand why people feel the need to go out of their way to be rude. That's why I like the DELETE COMMENT button so much - delete it and forget about it. The best revenge will be to write and sell more patterns! Have a great day!

  2. I second what Kim@Snug Harbor said. I can't figure out what people like that get out of their rude comments, but I'm not going to waste my time thinking about it. I'd rather look at your lovely patterns and plan what I'll be knitting next.

  3. I am with Kim too, DELETE and forget it. If they could have really figured it out their own they would have, but they purchased a pattern! Not worth the time you have taken on it already, forget about it! :-) I LOVE your patterns.

  4. That sucks! I'm just new to knitting and I appreciate so much that people are willing to write out patterns. I can only imagine how much work it entails. Keep writing, your knits are beautiful!

  5. Haters gonna hate. Like onehuskergal said, if they could have figured the design out on their own, they would have. Try not to let one knitting troll get to you. :)

  6. The other side of the coin . . . I've seen patterns for sale on Ravelry that are obvious rip-offs of patterns I've seen elsewhere (both published in books and leaflets as well as patterns posted by someone else on Ravelry). Unfortunately, not everyone selling something online is as thorough and ethical as you are. I'm sorry you were insulted. You didn't deserve it

    Maybe the person was just fed up with seeing patterns sold on Ravelry (some as high as $20.00) that are ripoffs or just basic stuff based on her/his knitting skills. There must be a at least half-a-dozen simple fingerless mitts patterns for sale that are basically all the same beginning knitter pattern.

    The problem is that Ravelry has no filter it is willing or able apply to pattern sellers. But filtering would make Ravelry into a less fun site than it is now. So, just roll with it. Your next pattern might well get nothing but praise.

  7. I would ignore this person's comment. Sometimes people just want something for nothing. A lot of patterns look more complicated than they are and when they buy them, they are disappointed. I say, thank goodness it isn't too complicated!! and I can sit and have fun making it. I've been asked if I sell my patterns and I've haven't wanted to do that yet. I sit with my crochet hooks and let them work. I appreciate how hard it is to write down a new pattern as you go. There are just a lot of unhappy, unappreciative people. I love your work!

  8. I'm so sorry that person made that kind of comment. Some people just don't seem to think. I would only leave a comment like that if the pattern had multiple obvious mistakes AND wouldn't respond to private correspondence. If she wants to just "figure it out" herself then she should just do that. I don't have the skill to design anything on my own, so I am thankful for people like you who take the time and effort to design beautiful patterns for me to make!

  9. Robyn, you can't please everyone, so you just have to forget the people that are rude, and concentrate on all the people that support you - us! Me! But at the same time, it's good to reflect on what's working and what's not. Personally I totally agree with you, that even if your pattern is fairly simple, you have still done all the work to assess GUAGE (ultimately) and what will work, and how to explain it. Not everyone is a super-star knitter (me!) and being able to find simpler patterns to knit for leisure are of the utmost importance. It's a shame this person was so bloody rude, but karma will come round and bite them in the bum! I am looking forward to buying a few of your patterns to try soon by the by - when I get the time! Might be more like summer :) Keep up your great work, we are all behind you every step of your glorious way! Katie. xxxxxxx


Post a Comment