PDA

View Full Version : I'm overwhelmed by Ravelry


vaknitter
06-07-2008, 11:07 AM
I got my Ravelry invite some time ago and registered a user name...which I have forgotten. I got on a couple of times, but honestly I really am not computer savy and have a really short attention span. I would like to get active on Ravelry b/c I need new knitting ideas and inspiration...but where do I begin?

heatherg23
06-07-2008, 11:15 AM
I feel the exact same way. There are so many things on that website. Sometimes it just doesn't make sense. There are groups and forums etc. In my mind I thought the groups and forums should be the same thing. The organization is a little off. I don't even waste time trying to figure it all out.

Oh well........
Heather

mwhite
06-07-2008, 11:36 AM
I felt overwhelmed as well but have been using Ravelry as more of a reference tool than a discussion group. I've joined several groups that interest me, which I recommend... for example, I'm working on lace doilies so my groups are centered around that and I do participate in the discussions within those groups. I still prefer KH in the longrun though because I feel it is more personal and it's familiar. Ravelry is a great place to find someone's experience with a particular yarn or pattern and I love to browse through the projects and make comments and add them to my favorites. My advice is to just kinda mingle with the site, type in items, patterns, yarns that interest you and go from there. KH is just home for me and it's like walking in the front door after work, kicking off my shoes, reading what everybody's knitting or doing, I love KH! The mods are super, all have the extensive abilities to help keep us together and are so helpful. The commoners(for lack of a better term) like me are helpful and make me feel very comfortable.... I'm a tad intimidated by the thousands on Ravelry.

ninabambam
06-07-2008, 11:49 AM
I am so happy to hear that there are other people that feel this way. I have gone on to Ravelry several times and just confused. I love KH!

knitgal
06-07-2008, 11:57 AM
Actually, I think the organization is incredible. The website itself is just amazing. I use it as a reference and I am into the forums. Go on one day and just click around- on everything. You can always click the "back" button!
I belong to groups for my favourite tv shows, sock knitting etc. It's nice to have a "focus group" devoted to the one topic.
I LOVE being able to look up yarns that I am interested in and seeing what others say about them. Also, it great to see the colourways knit up, or in better pictures than a online store provides.
The patterns section is also great. You can search a specific topic, like "dishcloths" and it will come up with every dishcloth imaginable. Or you can "browse patterns" by the weight of yarn, whether it's knitting or crochet, whether it's free etc. So if I was looking for a free knitting pattern for a shrug, I could just click those buttons and find all the patterns that match that description.
It's also great to look at other people's FOs. It's nice to see the yarn they used, or the comments they make about the pattern, like problems or suggestions.
Don't be afraid or intimidated. It's set up a little differently from other sites, but it's easy to use once you spend a little time looking around!
I almost always have KH open in one window and Ravelry in another. They are both amazing resources and I am glad to have them.

Azlynn
06-07-2008, 12:07 PM
I'm still really confused by how Ravelry works, too, but I'm slowly figuring it out and am really starting to like it. In fact, I'm finding it quite addicting! I start looking for a certain yarn to see what I can make with my yarn, and before I know it, I spend 2 hours looking at everyone else's projects using that same yarn. Next to looking at yarn, looking at other people's projects has become an addiction of mine, and what better place to do it?

I agree with Knitgal. Just keep clicking around. I'm still not getting everything about it, but I'm figuring out more and more just by clicking around, and it's really a great site with so much to offer!

Terri

knitgal
06-07-2008, 12:16 PM
I think everyone has to remember that Ravelry is still in Beta- which means that not all the "bugs" are worked out yet and there are more features yet to come.

suzeeq
06-07-2008, 12:36 PM
The difference between forums and groups is that groups are all the groups in general and forums are the ones you're subscribed to. You don't have to visit any of the forums, you can just look up yarn and patterns and see what other people have made with a particular yarn or what patterns look like in various yarns if you're thinking of making one.

iza
06-07-2008, 12:45 PM
Yes, ravelry is very overwhelming at first! But you can go slowly, no need to rush. I agree with the others: start by searching for patterns and yarns, look at people's projects. From there you can explore more if you feel like it, and add your own projects to your notebook. You can click on the Help tab on ravelry too, you even have a list of people to contact if you need help.

For some people, the forums and groups are what makes ravelry so great, but not for me, I prefer KH for that :teehee:. What I find fabulous is the database of all the patterns, yarns, and notebooks (people's projects, favorites, etc.) in which you can search. Everybody use ravelry in different ways, and you'll know what works for you by exploring it. :thumbsup:

Gertie
06-07-2008, 12:47 PM
KH is just home for me and it's like walking in the front door after work, kicking off my shoes, reading what everybody's knitting or doing, I love KH!

Same here. Kinda like calling a friend and saying, "Hi. It's me. How ya doin?" I'm not saying I'll never join ravelry, but I know I'll spend way too much time there just lurking if I do join. Somebody's gotta get stuff done around here!

Cynamar
06-07-2008, 01:03 PM
It took me a long time to spend any time there on anything besides my own notebook but I'm enjoying it a lot now. It is overwhelming at first! I recommend putting all of your stash and any books you have in your notebook--also any projects you are working on and queing any that you plan to do. Then search for groups and join some where you feel you would have something in common with the others in them. Then just jump in some of the conversations like you do when you join any othe message boards. Soon you will feel more at home there--but you will still like it here better ;) .

Cirrus
06-07-2008, 01:34 PM
I signed up to join but have heard nothing in over a month. How long does it take?

Cynamar
06-07-2008, 01:37 PM
You should have heard. It probably went to your spam folder. That happened to me! But I was sent my invitation in NOvember and it took months to figure it out!

knitgal
06-07-2008, 01:37 PM
Well it used to take about a month, but I think it only takes a couple of days now. Check your junk mail folder or contact them for another invite.

iza
06-07-2008, 01:40 PM
Look in your junk mail, Cirrus, your invite might be there! I think it takes only a few days now to get an invite. I think some people with hotmail accounts have had problems too.

Plantgoddess+
06-07-2008, 01:49 PM
I'm another casual Ravelry user. It is the best for looking for ideas for a particular yarn you may have in your stash or a particular project in mind you can look at patterns and then see what yarns people used and how the FO looks. It is a great research tool, so much easier than using a search engine and wandering the net looking for info. I agree that KH is the best for friendship and help with techniques and problems.

Cynamar
06-07-2008, 02:00 PM
I have just started getting into the forums in the last week or two. I've joined many groups but only post in a few. If you want to use the groups you have to just jump in with both feet.

Mike
06-07-2008, 02:00 PM
Seems like every time I find a group that I think "that's a knitting topic I would like" there is absolutely no knitting talk going on.
I really don't need more "off topic" forums.

The only ones that interest me knittingwise are Men Who Knit (because I don't like their website layout and like the Ravelry one better) and the DoubleKnitting group, but not much goes on there.

The off topic ones take too much of my time and I can't resist so I end up avoiding it altogether. I just need to go there and remove myself from those groups without looking to see what the topics are.
Then I need to look harder before I sign on to a group instead of searching groups and signing on to give them a chance.

I don't know how people find patterns there. I've searched and clicked on links but have not found a single one (other than one that I put up). Seems everyone else is into expensive yarn and pay patterns to go along with it.

Cynamar
06-07-2008, 02:03 PM
I don't mind off-topic forums but then I don't get out much.

suzeeq
06-07-2008, 02:05 PM
There's a lot of free Ravelry patterns and links to free ones people have on their blogs. When you search for a particular item - shawl, sweater, hat - you can try the experimental search and can click on the categories under Narrow your search and specify `free' in the tags.

Jan in CA
06-07-2008, 02:13 PM
I love Ravelry and think the organization is great! I don't care for the forums, but we have KH so who needs them?! I use it for research and keeping track of patterns I want to make. You can mark something as a favorite so you can easily go back and check it out later, too.

I like the ability to look up a yarn and then see what others have made with it and see what they say about it. Or look at a pattern and see what yarns they used and what they say about that. You can look up a designer and find out what patterns are in a book and who made them so you can see what they look like by real world knitters. It's a time suck at first, but eventually you do use it for research and a tool more.

Mike
06-07-2008, 05:14 PM
There's a lot of free Ravelry patterns and links to free ones people have on their blogs. When you search for a particular item - shawl, sweater, hat - you can try the experimental search and can click on the categories under Narrow your search and specify `free' in the tags.
I'll have to try that. Maybe I'll get in a mood to go and remove myself from the off topic groups and then I'll be willing to check in more often and poke around.

suzeeq
06-07-2008, 05:31 PM
One thing I don'l like is that you're automatically on 3 ravelry related groups and can't remove yourself from them. I just stick them down at the bottom of the list and don't look at them, concentrating on those that are interesting to me. BTW, I think there's a group for every state, so you can check that out and maybe find a group near you to knit with. A lot of stuff in there is generally OT though, having to do with weather, zombies and moving to your state.

vaknitter
06-07-2008, 09:39 PM
I wasn't trying to bash Ravelry in any way !! I am just overwhelmed by all the options. Maybe in this heat wave I will sit down and play with it some tomorrow. The hubby is gone all day and I moved some furniture around in an attempt to squelch some of our doggie troubles and unintentionaly blocked the hall closet which contains all the clean sheets, towels, vacuum and other cleaning instruments so I guess cleaning will just have to wait until the hubby moves the furniture and then he'll be here to help with the cleaning :teehee: It really was unintentional

Knit4Fun
06-07-2008, 10:44 PM
I like to use Ravelry as a way to get other people's feedback on yarns they have knitted with before I shell out money to buy it myself! Plus as previous posters have said, you can see what others make with the yarn you are considering.

It's also a handy way to keep track of your stash, needles and library.

If you are into the forums (I think they are fun and enjoy the yarn swaps), they can be fun and/or instructive too.

That's what is great about Ravelry, you can do as much or as little as you'd like with it.

I also agree that KH is by far my favorite knitting site - I tell everyone I know about it - the videos are wonderfully helpful and the people here are the BEST! :hug:

hartleystudio
06-08-2008, 08:39 AM
What a relief!!! I thought I was the only one that just felt lost on Ravelry! I really want to explore it more and use it to it's full potential but between my kids and KH, I need time to knit!!!

losnana
06-08-2008, 11:34 AM
I felt overwhelmed as well but have been using Ravelry as more of a reference tool than a discussion group. I've joined several groups that interest me, which I recommend... for example, I'm working on lace doilies so my groups are centered around that and I do participate in the discussions within those groups. I still prefer KH in the longrun though because I feel it is more personal and it's familiar. Ravelry is a great place to find someone's experience with a particular yarn or pattern and I love to browse through the projects and make comments and add them to my favorites. My advice is to just kinda mingle with the site, type in items, patterns, yarns that interest you and go from there. KH is just home for me and it's like walking in the front door after work, kicking off my shoes, reading what everybody's knitting or doing, I love KH! The mods are super, all have the extensive abilities to help keep us together and are so helpful. The commoners(for lack of a better term) like me are helpful and make me feel very comfortable.... I'm a tad intimidated by the thousands on Ravelry.

I totally agree! I use Ravelry as a databank for my yarn and projects and as a resource to search out various projects, yarns, etc. It is great to see several projects made from the same yarn, or the same pattern made from different yarns. But as for discussions, knitting info and just plain fun, nothing compares with KH. It is indeed like coming home, taking yhour shoes off and curling up with a cup of hot tea (or iced tea this time of year) and a good friend.

suzeeq
06-08-2008, 11:50 AM
Yep, or as Shandeh put it in another thread, this is like going into a virtual yarn store where we can stitch n bitch and share information and patterns.

wholycow
06-09-2008, 05:10 PM
I almost bailed the first couple of times I tried to use it..it's so big,and intimidating is a good word...but someone came to my rescue,and was friendly and understanding,so I didn't give up. I'm still dazed,and confused,but now I say 'so what'...I'm here to learn,and if it takes awhile then it will take awhile..it's not a race,at least to me. I still am unable to figure out how to get the ravelery thingie on under my name...;) but someday,it'll happen..no worries..just knit.;o):thumbsup:

MerigoldinWA
06-09-2008, 06:52 PM
How do you guys get those little Ravelry icons for your signature here, especially Knitgal with the one with your name over there. I have a different name there too.

dturner
06-09-2008, 08:45 PM
I agree with you! Ravelry is an awesome site, but it is a little overwhelming. I like to go to Ravelry to get new ideas, but I prefer this site for questions and discussions!

sakura-panda
06-10-2008, 02:05 PM
I love using Ravelry as a resource when I'm interested in finding a particular pattern or getting ideas for a particular yarn. (When Michael's clearanced their bamboo yarn I went on Ravelry to get an idea for how many skeins to stock up with. :thumbsup: )

I've peeked into the forums, but I prefer to come here for chit chat and questions and to see people's latest projects. It's has a more small-town community feel and the company is so nice. :inlove:

(Even though I don't spend as much time here at KH as I would like. :pout: That's actually another reason I don't go on Ravelry much.)

knitgal
06-10-2008, 02:14 PM
Actually The.Knitter contacted a woman on Ravelry and she made it for me. I'm not sure who it was exactly! I will make a note to ask her.

Mike
06-10-2008, 03:39 PM
Now that I've removed myself from the off-topic groups (and ignore that people have replied to me or linked me) I've spend some time messing with patterns and I figured out how to find some free ones.
Given that it's still in the beta phase it works pretty good.

cam90066
06-10-2008, 07:19 PM
How do you guys get those little Ravelry icons for your signature here, especially Knitgal with the one with your name over there. I have a different name there too.

Sheldon set this (http://www.knittinghelp.com/siglinker) up a while back. Not customized but if someone mouses over it shows your Rav name. Use this til you get a custom one.

Merigold....check out the info on Rav here (http://www.ravelry.com/wiki/pages/Ravelry-inspiredworks).

cam

mdog182
06-11-2008, 03:59 PM
my favorite part about ravelry, which is sometimes all that i really do, is "stalk" all of my friends on there to see what recent projects they have finished or have queued. under the people tab there used to be a section (that i guess is coming back soon) that shows your "neighbors" or people who have knitted or are working on the same projects as you. i liked to add a bunch of those people because i figure, we have similar taste. then under your friends tab in your notebook you can view your friend's activity and the stalking can begin.