If you’re able to read knitting and crochet patterns in their pdf-format (as opposed to the printed version), you’ll be open to not only a huge variety of available patterns, but also experience benefit from their portability. In this blog post, I’ll talk about the myriad ways to read a pdf.
On a computer
This is probably the most popular place to read pdfs, although depending on the size of your computer, not always the most convenient/portable. I always put all of my patterns on the computer (which is backed up) before transferring them to a more portable device… that way, I never lose a copy of my pattern!
To read a pdf on your computer, you’ll need a PDF viewer software like Adobe Reader. It’s free to download and will allow you to read any pdf.
On an e-reader
Putting the pdf on an e-reader (I have a Kindle) is my favorite way to read patterns. The e-reader is lightweight and easily slips into your purse (for travel) or sits next to you on the sofa. The downside to readers is that the screen is small and the zoom features are limited, meaning patterns with small fonts can be tricky to read.
Although your exact model may vary, most e-readers come with a USB cord that will connect it to your computer and allow you to transfer files. Read this blog post for a step-by-step explanation of how to transfer pdfs.
On a tablet
Do you have an iPad or Kindle Fire? You can pop pdfs onto them just like an e-reader (above) and the features of the tablet make browsing/storage even easier. Plus, if you have one, you probably carry it with you everywhere, anyway!
It’s low-tech… but still many people’s favorite way to read a pdf! A few sheets of paper are incredibly portable… and you can take notes/mark your place directly on the pattern.
Oftentimes, you can conserve paper while printing: print double-sided or perhaps print only the pattern instructions (and not the introductory material and photos).
Back up your patterns! Digital files can be easy to lose (think: computer crash), so it’s helpful to keep an extra copy. Here are some ideas:
- Back up your computer onto an external hard drive or use a backup service (Cloud storage is one example).
- If you purchase your patterns from Ravelry, click the ‘add to library option’ to keep a copy available online.
- If you receive your pattern via email, keep a copy of the email.