I've got a nasty habit.
I can't for the life of me follow a pattern without making *some* kind of changes. Sometimes it's just one or two minor shifts; adjusting for size, colour change, tweaking a motif, you know.
Interestingly, I also find that I will almost without fail, re-chart the patterns I work from. If there's no chart, you can be sure I'll sit down and chart out the pattern. Often if there is a chart, I will copy it down into my chart notebook, which has a nicely sized grid that makes it much easier to read the chart from a distance, as I find they can be quite small and tough on the eyes as printed. Sure I could just scan or copy the page and then enlarge it, but that doesn't solve all my problems.
You see, I know better than anyone else. Not about *everything*, no. But when it comes to my knitting? Yeah, I know best. Particularly when it comes to charted patterns (lace, especially particularly), I have a certain set of chart symbols to which I adhere nigh-religiously. They make sense to me. I have found that they make sense to most other knitters as well, and they are by and large quite close to the "standard" symbol sets used by most designers.
I really find it quite a time-saver to take a few minutes and re-chart the charts. I don't waste time thinking "oh, what does *this* symbol mean in this pattern again?" I can glance at my larger than average charts, quickly find my place, and knit on without having to waste any time or thought on interpreting the pattern. Occasionally I will forgo this, if the charts are quite minimal, or nicely printed, or happen to use my preferred symbols.
In this particular pattern... I need not name names, the choice in symbols is somewhat baffling. This particular chart is also quite large, so I ended up drafting it in Excel, and printing it on a larger sheet of paper, so as to avoid cutting and pasting, or breaking it up across multiple lines.
Speaking of this pattern, I'm down to the final chart (and yes, I've modified it... more beads!).
16 rows to go.
Currently 800 sts/row, and growing rapidly.
Hate to break it to you, but the full finished photoset for this one probably won't go live until next September, as it's a very, very, very, extremely special project.