3 Pattern Accommodations for Visually Impaired Crocheters

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Sometimes the most difficult part about crocheting is reading the patterns. It’s not because of the abbreviations. After more than 10 years, I pretty much have those down. Many times, it’s because of the print size. Many magazines simply don’t have print large enough to make reading their patterns feasible. 

With some magazines, I’m fortunate enough to find the patterns I want online. That doesn’t happen very often, though.

 

So what am I — and other visually impaired crocheters — to do? Here are three ways I adjust to patterns, or adjust patterns to me.

1. Use a magnifier.

This seems decelptively simple. What an easy solution, right? Well… Yes and no.

For short patterns, a magnifying glass or a page magnifier will work. It will allow me to see the pattern and know what comes next.

2. Use a tablet.

This is what I usually do. I download the pattern PDF (or open the website on my tablet) and enlarge the print to the size I need. I prefer this for more involved patterns, like many shawls and some amigurumi. I use my Kindle Fire for reading 99% of the patterns I use.

3. Have someone read it to you.

I actually have not done this, but it is an option if you have someone willing to do it. The thing is, those people are pretty rare. Another option under this is to record the pattern and listen to the directions as you need them. (This also leads me to a question, but more about that in a minute.) 

What else do you suggest? I know there are options that I have left out. I thought about including Braille as an option but I don’t know if there are patterns available in Braille. I woud assume so, but I’ve never used it. In fact, I don’t know very much Braille beyond the basic alphabet (and sometimes I struggle with that because I don’t use it regularly).

Now for the question.

As a visually impaired crocheter (or even a sighted crocheter, if you wear glasses for reading and such), how do you prefer your patterns? I have a few available on Ravelry and even one on this blog (there will be more). Do you prefer large print? Would you be interested in auditory versions of patterns?

Designers are working on being more size-inclusive, which is wonderful. I want to promote being accessible to visually impaired crocheters, too. If there are any of my patterns that you would like to see in a larger print or an audio file, let me know and I will work on getting that to you.

2 thought on “3 Pattern Accommodations for Visually Impaired Crocheters”

  1. Norma

    I am older and extremely nearsighted which is corrected with glasses. I would prefer a larger print so I don’t strain my eyes, but that isn’t feasible for magazine publishers to do for all patterns. Maybe they could do one or two per issue.

    Reply
    1. jencnipps Post author

      Hi, Norma. Thanks for your comment. I wonder if it would be possible to contact the magazine and request a large print version of a pattern. I don’t know if it would be or not. It’s something I’ll check into as well.

      Reply

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