I have been aware of Ravelry since it first came online.  Initially, and for a long time thereafter, I wondered what all the fuss was about.  People had to wait for an invitation to join it.  Kinda like those first Lexus commercials years ago that were quite mysterious, featured no automobile, but just let us know that something ‘exciting’ was coming our way.  I don’t get excited about new cars.  Sorry…

But, yarn and patterns and blogs and chat about them DO get me excited!  That’s why Ravelry is so cool.  If you haven’t joined yet, go to the site and get yourself signed up.  I don’t think you have to stand in line to do that anymore.  I don’t know enough about designing websites to know if the initial invitation period was technically required or if it was just a very good publicity tool.  What I do know is that the site is worth exploration.

Here is where you can see the many versions and variations on this pattern.  I especially enjoy the inspiration from seeing all the different yarn weights and colorways in which talented crocheters have created the shawl.  Having seen this shawl worked up in very colorful yarns inspires me to pull out some of my favorite variegateds to crochet one for myself!

I have spent far less time on Ravelry than I would like.  The computer is a huge time-eater for me.  Now – I didn’t say ‘time-waster’ – but it can be that too!  When I really first understood the attraction to Ravelry was when I was anticipating making a Southbaby Shawlette, a free pattern offered by LionBrand Yarns.

I had several concerns about the pattern.  First, I didn’t want to use a ‘mohair-like’ yarn because I am one who must perpetually frog a new pattern til I figure it out and memorize it.  Mohair is not kind to froggers!  I emailed a friend who had made several of these and asked for her advice.  She referred me to Ravelry for information on the pattern.  Bingo!  I got what I needed in short order.  What could be better than an instant room full of crocheters who are ‘talking’ about what I want them to ‘talk’ about?  Not only that, but they had ALL beat me to the punch.  They have been using this pattern for months, many having made more than one version of it.  I was able to quickly benefit from their successes and failures without having to make a bunch of mistakes myself.  I like that!

Bottom line was that I purchased two different yarns to make this pattern.  First is Lanett Superwash Merino which is not a mohair-like yarn.  I’ve finished that shawl.  Next, now that I’ve learned the pattern (and boy is it simple!), I’ll make it in the white angora I bought at the most recent Yarn Crawl.

By jd wolfe




Comments

7 Comments so far

  1. Nikki on August 25, 2010 7:47 am

    Ravelry is fantastic. I’m a fairly new knitter and I love how many patterns are on there with examples. It is a fabulous resource.

  2. Annelise Shapiro on August 25, 2010 7:58 am

    Thanks for this. I’ve been on Ravelry a couple months and am still trying to learn all there is to take advantage of.

  3. Karey64 on August 25, 2010 8:45 am

    Ravelry is awesome! There is so much fun stuff going on all the time – Swaps, charity projects, knit/crochet-alongs, etc. Plus, I have have met some really nice cool people who have a common interest. And the resources and help the Ravelry community provides is invaluable!

  4. Casey on August 25, 2010 9:49 am

    I love LOVE Ravelry and spend far too much time exploring when I could be creating :)

  5. Karen OGrady on August 25, 2010 12:30 pm

    My dear daughter calls it “crack for crocheters and knitters. I too love ravelry, but I haven’t done much with my personal part of it. I need to get more active. As a research tool it is EXCELLENT!

  6. Wendy on August 25, 2010 2:16 pm

    I almost never use the yarn that a pattern calls for. At revelry I can look at pattern and very often see several versions of it..different yarns. colors, and even on different bodies Ala the interweave gallery gals AND with notes about modifications and progress. AND that’s just the patterns..not yarn finder or the forums or the people… it’s virtually endless!

  7. vashti on August 25, 2010 9:14 pm

    Hi jd, I do the same thing with yarn. In Ravelry, some yarns have gotten lots of comments and advice. I look up a specific yarn, and on its yarn page, there’s a tab at the top for comments. I’ve learned so much from what others say about what happened when they washed the yarn, or used for a certain kind of project.

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