Garnstudio Drop Designs, the Scandinavian retailer and designer is well known for supplying knitting yarns, designs, knitting needles, buttons and other accessories. They are also known for their constantly growing range of contemporary designs. These designs � which include many for crochet, have all been translated into English and are FREE to access on the Garnstudio website.
The designs available include a full range of crochet patterns including clothing, accessories and household items and these range from contemporary exciting designs to more timeless classics. The site currently features a preview of up and coming designs for Spring and Summer 2007 and there are many new and interesting crochet designs.
The website is easy to access � from the front page you have a list of languages and a click on the English button takes you into the translated area. Crochet patterns can be accessed through the crochet button, or can be found within the main sections. The patterns can be searched for in different ways, which makes it easy to find what you are looking for or just to browse and look for inspiration!
The designs are written for specific Garnstudio yarns, however the company generously offers full yarn information such as weight, length of yarn per ball, gauge information and knitting tension over a 4 inch/ 10cm square and this information makes it very easy to work out an alternative yarn, although Garnstudio yarns are available throughout the US and Europe and of course are readily available online. The yarn data is accessed through the �product� section and is available on the �more about the yarn� page.
The designs have all been translated from Norwegian to English and a schematic chart is included on most of the designs that I have looked at. There is a forum on the board where questions about specific patterns can be raised and answered from other crocheters or from the Garnstudio team. There is a handy conversion chart on the site which converts hooks, crochet terms and sizing between which is a useful tool.
One very interesting feature of the site is that information about the felting quality of yarns is demonstrated. On the �felting information� page swatches before and after felting are shown and this gives a really visual impression of the felting qualities of different wools. As an aside, it is interesting to note that the stitch definition mostly disappears in all of the felted swatches except for the one that is rich in silk � and silk, of course, does not felt and this shows how it holds its shape.
One personal observation which I�d like to share � Garnstudio have done an excellent job of translating all of this, however there are one or two oddities and it is worth reading the pattern and instructions through in full before embarking on a project. I have also noticed that not all of the patterns include English and US crochet terms, however there are conversion charts on the Garnstudio website.
I�d love to know your views on these free designs � pop over to the crochet forum and let me know!