Crochet patterns are wonderful tools for fellow crocheters that allow them to replicate results of a design they like. If written well, most crocheters should be able to follow the instructions and be happy with the final product. It goes without saying that mistakes should be minimal (though nobody is perfect), and that photos also help with any tricky parts along the way.
However, pattern ratings could be scaring off potential users/buyers of patterns. And they have to get past that point before they will invest in a pattern. Unfortunately, rating a pattern as Beginner, Intermediate, or Advanced is really rather vague when you consider it. There are many crocheters who have crocheted for years but have only made afghans or flat work. There are many newer crocheters who have only made amigurumi, but are able to pick up new techniques rapidly. So rather than rate my patterns as Beginner, Intermediate, or Advanced, my recent patterns and all going forward will now simply state the skills needed in order to complete the pattern.
For example if it is an amigurumi pattern, I may state that the skills needed are the ability to work in the round, to make an adjustable ring, to single crochet, invisible decrease, etc. This way, whether a crocheter is new or experienced, they will know right up front what skills they may need to learn or to brush up on before attempting the pattern. There are many existing videos and tutorials online that can be taken advantage of to be sure they are ready to take on the pattern, no matter what skill “level” they believe they are at.
The bigger the audience for a pattern, the better for a designer. And the more confident the crocheter, the better the results will be. We all start somewhere and many may not give themselves enough credit. But why should one technique or skill hold someone back from making a pattern? Even crocheters with years of experience may sometimes need to learn a new stitch or brush up on a technique. It’s a great way to discover and learn along the way and be able to make the patterns they love. So this just seems to make much more sense all around to me. Does this make sense or am I just plain old mad?