I'm always amazed that some stitchers don't like to swatch -- for me it's the fun part of the project, in addition to being a fantastic time saver. So much better to spend 15 minutes finding out you really hate working a particular stitch pattern instead of taking all that time with a project that isn't giving you any happiness in the execution. But, to each her/his own, and here's a few I have been working on lately.
This simple square motif is from a Brazilian site (can't get a working link, the address is www.pingouin.com.br/receitas/receitas1.php), it's from issue #17 Colete Ventura. Instructions are in Portuguese (nope, don't speak it) but are also charted, and I do speak Symbolcraft. It's made in Rowan Handknit Cotton, which I am trying for the first time. The swatch is quite firm, which tells me I could most likely go up a hook size, although for that particular garment I may want firmer motifs.
Next we have two random motifs from a Japanese crochet stitch compendium --
They're done in Italy Baby from Plymouth Yarn Company -- 100% cotton, 178 m./50g. I like both of them, but they may turn out to be too large for a project I have in mind.
I like the design, but the yarn is too heavy for the hook size I used. It's also on the large size to use in a garment -- try again!
This time I went with an allover pattern from a different Japanese stitch dictionary:
Also in Rowan Handknit Cotton, but this time the yarn/hook/stitch all work together for me. I have a feeling that this may turn into a sweet little spring topper in the not too distant future -- where's my pencil and paper? -- it's time for some pattern math!