Wednesday, June 10, 2009


There has been a lot of talk lately about sketchbooks. Peg and others have talked about different software packages that can be used to create them. Ideas and screen shots have been shared.

I have had a fiber/design/ideas sketchbook for ages, always in my trusty notebook. My notebooks have been ongoing ever since I can remember. They are small (4x6 or so) spiral notebooks where I write things to do, things to remember, design ideas, sketches, yarn amounts, knitting calculations and whatever else needs a secure place to be written on. There is a large pile of them, each with start and end dates. Sometimes I go through a couple a year, sometimes one will last more than a year, it all depends on how busy I am. For the most part, I can remember when and where I sketched something down, I go back and review if there is something I want to make. As we all know, life has had a dramatic change with the IT era, but there are still things I do by hand, sketches being one of them. Going back to the notebooks and finding things quickly is not that easy anymore. What to do with the sketches? what to do if I see or think of something and I am not at the computer? Plus I use three different computers plus the cell phone.
I made a list of requirements:
-Indexing capability
-Easy notes
-Scanned sketches
-'standard' format
-Non exclusive software so I can open the file in any of the computers I happen to be at. Ideally non-proprietary software

I decided to use the word processor in OpenOffice. I can create a TOC, by using styles I can keep the TOC current. I can write as many notes as I want. I can insert pictures and scans.

Scanned sketch: each project idea has title, typed notes and the scan(s) from the notebook. The only other thing I might want to add is dates. Other than that, this will work going forward.


Leigh said...

Oh my. I was very much tempted to do this too when Peg blogged about it. Now you're tugging at that temptation again. I think I'll move it up a notch or two on my to-do list. :)

Peg in South Carolina said...

I like this for sketchbooks focusing on completed projects. My sketchbook focuses on the amorphous idea that comes from time to time and maybe some development of it and for that software that allows for easy, creative page layouts seems to be working really well. Now what you are temptimg me to create is something similar but different for projects that are actually in process. I just put everything in Word documents and weaving files and keep them in a folder on the computer. This works OK, but I think yours may be more efficient. I will think on this. Thank you for the post!

Laritza said...

I have not done anything on complete projects. Things that I finish I tend to document on the blog, this is for random thoughts and sketches. A sketch and the yarn, technique and color I think might work for it. Things I see and like and decide I can come up with my own version of it. I specially like the TOC, quick and easy to find things.

fleegle said...

Great idea! It's the only time that I like the paper alternative, though. Easier to jot a quick note or attach a yarn.

Jane said...

I wish I had enough ideas to actually go into a sketch book! I like the idea though :-)