07 June 2007

Anticipation for Ravelry

People are getting so excited about Ravelry, it seems, that they can hardly contain themselves. This was me 3 days ago, and I know it's still most of you (though they're inviting people from the waiting list in large numbers daily...). Since I've been in and seen it, I thought I could say a few more things about what to expect for those of you chomping at the bit. I also posted this to a Flickr discussion group where people are getting mighty anxious:

What it is: think of it as a combination of MySpace and a vast fiber arts database that's created by users (a la Wikipedia). The possibilities of how this can be used are pretty much endless, but for starters it allows you to (1) organize your projects, stash, needles and books (2) browse other people's stuff (3) find patterns and yarns and instantly see how they've been used by lots of other people (4) find people with similar fiber interests and tastes (5) projects can be linked to blog posts, so it's also a good way to stumble onto new blogs that you're likely to enjoy (i.e., it's better than a random search), (6) there are forums for everything fiber-related that can potentially become *the* central forums for online fiber enthusiasts. One of the most exciting things about Ravelry, I think, is that it's like a Grand Central Station for online fiber people. It doesn't replace anything that exists already, but it can organize, connect, and provide a central gateway for all of it.

What you can do now: You can take your waiting time now to get everything ready to put on your "notebook" in Ravelry as soon as your invite comes in (which could be any moment now). Photograph all your projects and every yarn in your stash if you want to be that thorough (and you will want to be once you get in there and see everybody else's). Upload all these pics to Flickr (eventually they say you'll be able to import pics from other image storage sites, but right now it's just Flickr). Lay out all your needles and make a note of everything you've got on a single sheet of paper so you can enter it more easily in the Ravelry chart (see screen shot linked to above, to know what it will look like). Enter all your knitting books into LibraryThing.com - you'll be able to import knitting books only directly from LibraryThing into Ravelry.

That should keep you busy in the short time remaining until you join up!

For those of you who listen to Cast On - you probably are among the first to have heard about it, because Brenda mentioned it quite early, and it is (in my opinion) the answer to many of the questions Brenda raised in her last series about the online knitting community - or at least, it has the potential to be. And Jess and Casey are incredible people, doing an incredible job very fast, out of nothing but generosity and enthusiasm! Let's all channel those same feelings, which are so common among knitters, and put it into making this database as vast and magnificent as it can possibly be!


aija said...

Great synopsis! I haven't (nearly) been able to take advantage of everything ravelry, but the tip of the iceburg I've played with just has me so wowed.

WineGrrl said...

Frankly, my invitation only took a week or so....I don't understand why these people are complaining so much!

Octopus Knits said...

Thanks for the additional info.!

Kirsten said...

Thanks for the info Kate. My only reservation is outing myself about how much stash/books/knitting gear I own! It may seem a bit vulgar to have it all out in the open like that! ;)
Off to charge the camera and await my invitation.

carole said...

well the knitting gods forced me to take inventory of the stash... that's the first step.. now to photograph it.
Thanks for the tips... bettern to have all that done so I can just upload and then gawk once I get my invite (only a bit more than 3000 people ahead of me now)