It has been a few years since I was last able to attain the most glorious trophy: a completed sweater in time for New York Sheep and Wool. These days, I am more of a Rhinebeck hat person. So if you are like me and are looking for a relatively quick yet festive wooly to celebrate the autumn season, here is some inspiration.

From left to right: Rutast’s Yellow Memories, Zanetta’s Wurm / Rikke Hat, and tanisfiberarts’ Framed Slouch.

From left to right: Tatterz’ Nara Hat, MisKnitz’ Seedling larisa’s Peak Hat …and Eloise and Casey’s pick: loopysue’s Minion Hats.

Thursday Tip: Topic Tools

September 26th, 2013

The Ravelry forums are home to more than 2.5million topics (y’all are chatty!), and the topic tools are how I manage the conversations I want to follow.  From the topic tools menu I can choose where to enter the thread, adjust which posts are marked as read, and choose to watch or ignore it.  Ignored threads no longer show on my list of topics, while watched threads will show at the top of their forum when there are new posts, so I’m guaranteed not to miss them!

You can pull up the topic tools menu by clicking from the topic list, as shown by the green arrow above.  It’s also available while you’re reading a thread in the bottom right of the screen.  Enjoy wielding your power over the 10.5 million forum posts!

Sometimes, when I’m having a bad day, I search Ravelry for pictures of animals in clothes. I don’t know why, but they never fail to make me smile. I particularly love animals in hats, and creative Ravelers have made it possible for their animals to have a hat for every occasion. Here are a few of my favorites:
Pet Hats 1
From left to right above: pnwbookgirl’s Leeloo’s Halloween Hat, flintknits’ crushmouse, and –Kath–‘s Pet Beret.

Pet Hats 2
Here from left to right, we have: BoatkrazysWife’s Cat ‘fro, xmoonbloom’s Frog Costume Hat for Pet and elapine’s Carmen Miranda foster-cat hat.

Pet Hats 3
And last, but certainly not least: PirateFoxy’s Horsie Santa Hat & Elf Hat, The GrouchyCairn’s Maisie Celebrates Dr. Seuss’ Birthday, and TerriRoyea’s Oh the Humanity Greyhound Hat.

You can see the most recently completed pet wear projects using this search. If you need to save it for a rainy day, just click “save search” at the top left of the page after you click the link & it will be stored in your magnifying glass tab. Hope it brightens your day like it brightens mine!

Thursday Tip: Helpful Highlights

September 19th, 2013

This one is new and it still needs some refining – but we’d love for you to give it a try.

When you see a project with notes that are helpful to you, you can click to mark to them as “helpful” and then highlight the useful parts. Your highlights will show up on the “projects” tab for that pattern and we hope to use popular highlights to help others in the future.

Note that highlights might not yet be offered if you have an older browser

Community Eye Candy: At the Fair

September 17th, 2013

Ravelers have been busy this year, entering projects in their State and County Fairs, Agricultural Shows, Fêtes, Exhibitions… and winning ribbons for their beautiful handwork! Today’s Eye Candy focuses on some gorgeous knit and crochet pieces that have won prizes and ribbons in fairs and shows this year:

prizewinning projects 1

From left to right above: Heylor‘s Rocket Beret, bigred01‘s Grasshopper coriolois effect socks, and I-hook‘s Butterfly Baby Sandals w/ Sundress and Hat.

prizewinning projects 2

Here, from left to right, we have: phdaisy1‘s Brioche, Baby, Brioche, WouldYouBelieve‘s Something Wicked This Way Comes, and BlackberryTea‘s Sanquhar Gloves.

prizewinning projects 3

Finally, above from left to right are TXCr1cket‘s Fair Day Off, ttvphoto‘s Bingley Show Entry – Happypottamus, and lindacecille‘s Reversible Rainbow Afghan.

Congratulations to you all, and thank you for sharing your wonderful work here and at your local fairs and shows! If you’re interested seeing in more prize-winning Ravelry projects, check out the Going to the Fair Ravelry group – be sure to have a corndog or fried Oreo in hand, if you really want to set the mood. ;)

Thursday Tip: Road Trip Planner

September 12th, 2013

Have a road trip coming up soon? I love to try to visit yarn shops whenever I travel and now there’s an easy way to make sure you don’t miss one that is on your route. You can find the Road Trip Planner under the yarns tab.

Yarns tab RT planner

Click on “road trip planner” then enter your starting location, your destination and the number of miles you (or your travel mates) are willing to go off your route and choose “find shops on my route”. You’ll get a list of shops for your yarn shopping pleasure! If you click through to the shop, you’ll find the information we have about the shop like a phone number, web address, and hours so you can make sure they are open on the day you’ll be driving through. Enjoy your trip and your souvenir yarn!

Community Eye Candy: Bright Wovens

September 10th, 2013

Sometimes you just need a little color in your life.  Today’s eye candy is all about bright, beautiful wovens.

From left to right: myfinn’s Polarity, kasyafka’s 31st, and cutler070805’s Celebration dishtowels.

From left to right: dreamersplace’s J. Herriot, FatCatKnits’ Nerds Li’l Lizzy Tote Bag, genypher’s Woven Journal.

I hope these brightened your day as much as they did mine!

Group overload!

September 5th, 2013

Have you joined so many groups that your forums tab is miles long?

Christina recently added a new feature to groups – when you join a group, you can choose to place it on a tab within your forums. That way, you can split your groups into different tabs for easier browsing.

What about rearranging what you already have? You can either click the icon on any board on your forums tab to move it to a new spot OR you can go to your settings tab and make changes there (shown here)

One more handy thing – on the settings tab, you can change the size of your boards. They default to a really compact view but I like setting mine to “medium” so that they show 10 topics each.

Maybe it’s because I live in a place with particularly hot summers (and my house isn’t air conditioned), but I think it takes a special kind of crafting dedication to even think about working on a blanket throughout the summer! The reward – a cozy, completed blanket, ready just in time for crisp autumn days – is well worth it though, and I tip my hat to these Ravelers, all of whom started the beautiful blankets you see below earlier this summer, and finished them in the past week:

summer blankets 1

From left to right above, we have shazzeth‘s Owls Blanket (the eyes!! So cute), laprente‘s 7 Dwarfs Throw, and MissRain‘s Stained Glass Stars and Flowers.

summer blankets 2

Here, from left to right, are Lucybeth‘s Debbie Abraham’s Mystery Blanket 2011, electric-mama‘s Moorish Mosaic Afghan, and EmilyofMoon‘s Hue Shift Afghan.

Well done, crafters! Thank you for sharing your beautiful work! To see more recently finished blanket projects, check out this advanced project search for blanket, sorted by “recently completed.”

Deep in my heart, I am a sweater knitter.  And at the end of August in Texas, I am ready to dream of fall and imagine what sweaters I might make myself this year.  As I spend my evenings browsing via the advanced search, I love using the filters to narrow down my results to help me find my inspiration.  One quick way I do that is by typing not  and an attribute in the search field: an autocomplete drop-down will appear and I can choose the attribute I’d like to exclude.

typing not in the search field brings up filters you can choose to exclude from your search

(Because sometimes you want to make a sweater for you).