Publishers or Distributors

It can be difficult to distinguish publishers from distributors when there is no notation. If the "publisher" name seems to differ from the yarn brands used or shown, it might actually be the distributor. Distributors generally stock, market, and sell products for overseas companies--and to further complicate things, they may add their own labeling.

This issue can be impossible to solve definitely. Check OCLC in case the item has been previously cataloged and compare the details, keeping in mind a US distributor will likely be different from one located in Canada or elsewhere. For example, Noro (made in Japan) is distributed by Knitting Fever in the US and by Diamond Yarn in Canada. Try a quick Google or Ravelry search, if time permits.

Yarn companies often publish patterns designed to use their own yarn lines. If the pamphlet does not list any publication information, put the yarn company name in square brackets and include it in 260 $b, perhaps like this:

260 __ $a [S.l. : $b Noro]

Personal names or Corporate names

Common places to check for pattern designer information:

  • cover (front or back)
  • title page or verso
  • table of contents
  • at the head (or end) of a pattern

As mentioned above, yarn companies often publish pattern collections that center around their yarn lines. Some give credit to their designers, but many do not.

  • If there is no designer name listed in any of the common sources listed above, then use the yarn company name as a corporate name main entry in 110.
  • If an editor is listed, but there are many individual designers named in the collection, it might be better to place the editor's name under a 700 added entry for personal names. Another way to look at this would be: how many of the patterns (or written material) were contributed by the editor?
  • If a designer is listed as the author or has credit for most of the included patterns, that information should be included in a 100 main entry.

Yarn companies sometimes change names, go out of business, or are merged into others. Check corporate name authority records carefully when selecting a match. Corporate name authorities may exist for each name change (with see also references). If this is the case, be sure to select the one that most closely matches the information printed in the pamphlet. If there is limited information available, estimate the age of the pamphlet from the enclosed photographs, design, or garment style.

  • Bernat Yarn & Craft Corp. (no 99031308) - this record includes a 510 reference:
  • Emile Bernat & Sons Co. (no 95054664)

The brand or company name should be used in the 110/710 coporate name entries and in the series statement more often than as part of the main title entry. If the titles are arranged on the cover or title page in an unusual fashion, use 246 title variant to help improve searching results.

Using Ravelry as a resource

Ravelry, an online fiber arts community, includes a virtual database of books, pamphlets, and many related things. The site is free, but does currently require a login to access many areas. It is an excellent resource to consult or search when trying to identify a pamphlet or needing more information. A few differences exist in how Ravelry maintains or displays information, because it is a database rather than a library catalog. It is important to be aware of and adjust for these differences.

  1. Ravelry tries to maintain a single authority record for each designer name, and always refers to them as designers. For this reason, corporate names are often appended with "Design Team" or "Design Studio." Some designer listings are accompanied by explanatory notes, but many simply show the most standard format and related patterns. Doing a designer search may help with determining whether a name was ever used by a certain company.


  2. If researching or trying to identify a booklet on Ravelry, be aware that the following format (or slight variants) is commonly used for their main entry.
BrandName #BookletNumber, BookletTitle

Monographs, Series, and Vertical Files

Whether to catalog the pamphlet as a monograph or series may depend on policy. Generally, many do have distinctive titles, and many are part of a general (or themed) series put out by a yarn company.

Many pamphlets are smaller or less sturdy than books, and libraries may hesitate to keep them on shelves. If housing pattern pamphlets in vertical files, they still can be cataloged per the information and resources given in this toolbox.

Please see the bibliography for resources on series and vertical files.