How to create a pattern – Part 2: What is a base pattern and what is a child pattern

Here is a list of common shapes used in pattern design:


Once you created your play page, number each entry as shown in the example created by Lisa Jane, then post it in our group:

Play Page Lisa Jane

Lisa created 4 new patterns on this page alone!

We will follow her progress!

Lisa created a step-out for her pattern listed on the play page as No 5:

Pattern Design by Lisa Jane

When I look at this step-out, I can immediately see that she has a so-called “Base Pattern” in this.

Stopping at Step 3 creates a base pattern from which many variations and new patterns can develop.

My recommendation is to create a new step-out, ending at Step 3. Name this pattern.

For the purpose of this exercise, I will simply refer to it as “XC Base – Lisa can name it any way she wants to.

So the pattern ending in Step 3 is now called XC Base.

Any addition to it will be a new pattern with the family name XC.

She can now create another step-out for the ‘child pattern. The name of a child pattern should start with the family name XC. You might have seen this naming when looking up patterns called 4 Drop for example. When you do a search on the website for 4 Drop, you will get a list of all patterns that contain that phrase.

Click here to see the search result.

The new pattern could be called XC Extended (she could also call the base pattern John Base and name the ‘child pattern’ John ExtendedJohn being the family name and Extended the child name).

My recommendation is to stop at Step 5. Keep all pattern step-outs as simple as possible! You want to create a pattern, not artwork!

Step 6 can be shown as a variation in the step-out. Even a new tangler will see how step 6 is created without the need for a separate step.

Lisa is now required to create a step-out for the base pattern – and include artwork so that I can post it on the website.

She then needs to create another step-out, repeating the steps from the base pattern and to continue all the way to Step 5.

Step 6 can be shown as a variation on the step-out. She can also include multiple variations – as long as they can be understood without the need for a new step-out. Examples will follow! For now, I want to keep this simple.

And with this, we will await Lisa’s new pattern development.

Hugs until the next lesson!

How to create a pattern – Part 3: Step by Step to a great step-out



Skip to toolbar