Your heart beating fast, your fingers moving faster – we all know the stress of playing yarn chicken, desperately hoping you have enough to finish your project. For today’s tip I wanted to show you a couple ways I used the Ravelry advanced search functions when planning recent projects to improve my chances of having enough yarn. (Not sure how to find advanced search again? Click the magnifying glass at the top of every page, it has links to all the sections of advanced search!)

view needle sizes in other projects

For my Marin shawl, I had swatched with a couple different needle sizes and was unsure which one to go with. I decided to look at versions in the same yarn and see what look I preferred in the FO.

To do this, from my project page I clicked on the link to all projects in that yarn.

Then I clicked the advanced search link in the top left corner. Next, I selected the pattern name filter and filled in the pattern. Here’s a link to my search. From there, I selected the two needle sizes I was considering (4 and 5) and compared the results.

One thing stood out at me – with a size 5 needle many entries with yardage listed needed more than 1 skein, while with a size 4 needle most entries were able to get by with a single skein. Since I only have one skein of that colorway, I cast on with my size 4s and feel pretty good that I’ll win at yarn chicken.

view yardage in other projects

The problem with Cadeautje was entirely my fault. I looked up in advance how much yarn the pattern called for, and picked out exactly the right amount at Rhinebeck. But somehow when I sat down to knit I realized that I wrote down the wrong number along the way and only had 125 yards, instead of the 190 called for in the pattern. Since sometimes patterns overestimate the yardage needed, I decided to look at the range used in knitting my size to see if I had any chance of making it.

This time I followed the projects link in the pattern box on my project page.

Then I clicked to get to the advanced search and entered my size (F, as it is called in the pattern), in the search field at the top of the page. I ended up with this search. Then, I called up the yardage filter and just looked at the data there.

It was possible I had a shot. 45 projects in the 1-150 yards range. I entered a custom range of 1-130, to confirm.

Sad trombone sound, it was unlikely. Okay, so if I didn’t want to lose at yarn chicken, what were my options? I filtered my stash for other yarns at the same weight (check out this tip to learn how) and success! I had some candidates. But how would I distribute the different colors throughout my project? Back to advanced search, I looked for projects with 3 or more colors (normally I’d look for two, but this project involves yarn and thrums so I figured 3 colors probably meant 2 yarns and 1 fiber). Satisfied I had a backup plan if I did run out of yarn, I was able to confidently cast on my project.

I hope you’ve enjoyed learning a little about how I use the advanced search to plan my projects. If you have any great tips we’d love to hear them in For the Love of Ravelry!

spring shawls 1

grazzka’s Andrea and Fanalaine’s Tosh Merino and Noro.

Though shawls are popular year-round on Ravelry, it seems that they really shine in the transitional seasons when the weather is often perfect for Ravelers worldwide to get a lot of wear out of these beautiful accessories. So far this April, Ravelers have finished almost 7,000 shawls and wraps – and we’re just over halfway through the month! Today I wanted to feature some of my very favorite shawls that have been finished over the past few weeks.

spring shawls 2

Above, from left to right: ericamay’s red panda, lorix5’s
Icelandic Spring Shawl, and MASHAISL’s Shawl Petals of Rose.

spring shawls final

Here, from left to right, we have SvetlanaTomina’s Drops. Chocolate drops, KimDenise’s completely by accident, and una04’s Linientreu.

Such lovely work! If you’d like to browse through more shawl projects that have been finished this month, check out this advanced search – there are many, many more beautiful shawls and wraps to admire!

I’m feeling a little stir-crazy today and I’d like to escape a bit, preferably to sit on a beach with a good book and cocktail in hand. Since an actual trip to the beach isn’t an option today, I decided to escape by looking at some beautiful projects that were photographed in amazing beach settings.

beach garments

First off, a variety of garments on the beach. Clockwise, from upper left: stoneycreeknitter’s blue bellows, LeasaGraham’s Winter in Mexico cover up, AKnitterInNZ’s Laura’s Paradise and CeceliaNYC’s Birthday cardi.

beach shawls

Next, a few shawls to keep your shoulders warm from the cool evening breeze. Clockwise, from upper left: cushing’s Lahave Island Shawl, babsip’s Ocean Princess, 5SnailsInaRow’s Seaweed Shawl and groovynat’s Cayo-Coco.

Since I wanted to feature both the garments and the beach settings, you don’t get to see the full detail on some of these projects. You can see more images on the project pages using the links below the images. I hope you enjoyed this little trip to the beach with me!

Ravelry groups are such a helpful resource and wonderful place to find information, inspiration, and even friendship!

On our main groups tab, we provide several ways to browse groups by category to find ones you might be interested in. Sarah posted a detailed tip going over these browsing methods if you’d like to see more info here! You can also use the category filters on the left in the Advanced Group Search to find groups.

Today, I wanted to quickly point out some of our most active groups in a few different crafty areas – if you want to find a new group to read or participate in, check these out and see if they are a good fit for you!


Our most active year-round general fiber-related group is The Yurt:


From their group description: This is a virtual guild for people who love to make things. We are grounded in textiles and fiber, but embrace creativity of all kinds. If you’re making something – including yourself – you’re welcome here.


Crocheters keep busy creating shoulder wrappers and chatting about them in the very active Crochet Shoulder Wrappers group!

crochet group

From their group description: CSW focuses on crochet projects designed to wrap the shoulders… We pride ourselves on a warm, helpful community atmosphere and we would love to have you join in the fun. New members are always welcome!


Beginning Lace Knitters is a vibrant and active group for knitters to support each other in learning new lace skills.

knitting group

In their description, they want you to know that you are not alone: Have you ever tried to knit lace and torn your hair out? Ever thrown five rows of ugly mess across the room and sworn never to do it again? Keep wanting to try? Me, too. Let’s all learn together – misery loves company, after all!


Spinners encourage each other in Sweets off the Wheel, our most active spinning group on Ravelry.


They describe themselves as a support group dedicated to encouraging wheel spinning and meeting your monthly goals. Show off your progress! This group is also prone to bunch of smartassery and caffeinated shenanigans with a sprinkle of squirrels thrown in.


If you like to weave, check out Warped Weavers, our most active weaving group!

weaving group

They make it clear in their description that all who are interested in weaving are welcome: This is a place to share stories, techniques, questions, and ideas related to the woven object. Garments, rugs, household items, jewelry, sculptures, wall hangings—the sky is the limit. If it is created with a warp and a weft, it applies.

Charity Crafting

If you love crafting for charity, there are many charity crafting groups on Ravelry that will welcome you and your generosity! The most active is Hats and More for War-Torn Syria.

charity crafting

As they state in their description: our goal is to collect knitted, crocheted or store-bought sweaters, vests, socks, mittens, hats and blankets to help the Syrian children.


There are so many groups on Ravelry that will welcome you with open arms. Some are more technical in nature, some are chattier, and some have nothing to do with crafts at all, but they all make up part of the wonderful community here on Ravelry!

Today I wanted to look at pretty pictures of yarn. I loaded up the stash advanced search and started applying filters looking for inspiration. I found it in the foreign objects attribute – these are all yarns that are handspun with objects incorporated as part of the process. I loved the variety of approaches and found that all of them definitely counted as eye candy.

First up, some art yarns that incorporate a variety of foreign objects. What great textures these all have! doodler01’s #forestfloorsal, nabisknit’s Kraken SAL, and squiished’s Merry Gold ‘Round.

Next, some quiet beauties that prove that simple can be stunning. KristinaS’ Octarine, meliluc’s Smoothie fraise-cassis, and knitMIT’s Nectar Handpaint Superwash.

Finally, some statement pieces – these spinners went big and it paid off! chemlady’s 80s Charm Necklace Redux, spectre120’s RegenboogtruiEenhoornGlitterScheetjes, and CyberJulka’s TDF 2015 in Jenkins Woodworking Lovers Group II.

Here’s a link to the search I used. I hope you can find inspiration perusing the attributes as well!

On April Fools’ Day each year in the past, we have given you a hat.

This year, you can choose your hat! You can also choose from a variety of other flair for your Ravatar. To do this, go to your profile page by clicking your username in the upper right of the page.

Then, click on the “add some flair” button you see under your Ravatar. When you click on that you will see this menu.

You add flair by dragging the little icons onto your picture. If you decide you don’t want something, just drag it back out. Click “I am finished” in the bottom right when you have it just how you want it.

Now your awesome flair-filled Ravatar will show on your profile page and when you post in the forums, but only for today.

Happy April Fools’ Day!

Community Eye Candy: Belgium

March 30th, 2016

This week I’d like to show you some projects made by Ravelers in Belgium

Above: Raccroc’s Comme un air de printemps, Febr12’s Flaum, and stitchnerd’s Muted and bright

aline5too’s Men’s Tracks in a field, Riversch’s Shark-a-Jack, and fanalaine’s Scallops Stärke 6

bealana’s Tunika, DominiqueBe’s Neige sur les bruyères (made for a friend), and ChristalLittleK’s Nid pour ratous

Love to everyone in Brussels and all across Belgium!

Thursday Tip: The List

March 24th, 2016

Have you ever had a great idea for how to improve Ravelry and wanted to share it with us? Or maybe you want to see if we’re aware of a bug you’re experiencing? Well today’s Thursday Tip is all about The List – the place where we collect enhancement requests and bug reports.

How do I find The List?

The list is available on your forums tab – it’s between the top navigation tabs and your list of forum tabs and tools.

How do I get something added to The List?

Post about it in For the Love of Ravelry! Ravelry staff and volunteer bug trackers keep up with that forum and are able to add ideas to The List from there. If the idea is already on the list your post can be added, which is helpful for us to gather all the feedback about an idea in one place.

I have an opinion about a List item – what do I do?

There are several ways to voice your opinion about an item on The List.

If you post about it in For the Love of Ravelry, your post can be tracked to the item, as you can see on the right of the screenshot below.

It’s also possible to visit a List item and leave feedback there. You can get to an item by clicking a tracking link in a forum post, or by visiting The List and finding it by browsing (more details on that below!). By clicking the “Yes! I’d like this too” button you add to the thumbs up votes. By clicking “Notify me if this is completed” you become a watcher of this item. That means you’ll receive a private message when we mark the item as completed.

At the bottom of the page there is also a place for comments. They’re listed on the item in reverse chronological order, so we can quickly scan for the latest thoughts on the issue. Don’t be shy about leaving detailed comments – it’s valuable to us to learn exactly what you want and what you don’t!

How can I browse the list?

First, you’ll need to get to The List. From there we have a number of browsing options available on the left side of the page.

You can filter down by enhancements, bugs, tasks, or by the section of the site the idea is related to. There’s also a search at the top of the page if there’s a specific term you’d like to hone in on. Or you can look at the items sorted by most recent comment on the right side of the page.

Gosh, a lot of these ideas are really old. Does that mean you’re never going to get to them?

Definitely not! Lots of great ideas were suggested in the early days of Ravelry and just because we haven’t gotten to them yet doesn’t mean we never will. On the other hand, an item being on The List doesn’t mean it will definitely happen. We love having feedback from Ravelers on the changes you’d like to see (or not see!) and it is a key part of our discussions about how our two programmers spend their time.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this intro to how to share your ideas with us, or join in on the conversation about previous suggestions. We feel lucky to have a community that cares so much about Ravelry and its future.


chaoskaethe’s CSD-Anhänger 18M

Sometimes yarn seems like magic. With even just a little bit of it, we can make something great! Here are a few recently completed projects made with 50 or fewer yards (45.72 meters) of yarn.


Left, louisap’s Norwegian star pincushion #2, and right, frkgarndk’s make-up pads. Such pretty and clever home projects!


Stormwhisper’s Amigurumi Baby Seal and kelly-ann’s Little Hedgehog are ridiculously adorable!


Finally, I loved how pretty and practical kdmade’s heart bookmarks and Cheetah2011’s Leafy Coaster are!

Searching through these projects makes me want to look through my yarn remnants and see if I can make myself a pretty little something, as well. If you’d like to see more projects made with fewer than 50 yards, you can check out this advanced projects search link, where I entered a custom yardage range from 1 – 50 yards. Enjoy!

Quick Forum Tips

March 18th, 2016

The forums include a bunch of little useful tools and that are easy to miss if you aren’t looking for them. Here are a few things that you might not have noticed.

Topic totals

At the top of every thread, right below the title, is a summary line with a few different totals. Most of them are linked and you can click to dig into the details.

  • The number of images in the thread. Tap this to view all of the posts that include images.
  • The number of patterns that were linked in the thread. This brings you to the pattern search page and filters for the patterns that were discussed.
  • The same as above, but projects instead of patterns
  • Voices: this links to a page that shows the top posters in the thread, along with any moderators that have participated

Search inside a topic

At the top of each page of posts, above the first post, is a row of links. The search this topic link will open up a search box that you can use to either search for text in posts OR search for a particular person’s posts by putting in their username. Typing in your own name here can be a handy way to look at your own posts in a thread.

Search everywhere

There is a small search box in the top right of the main forums tab. If you are looking for something that you know has been mentioned somewhere, use the “All forums” option to search every forum/group on Ravelry. If you are looking for a particular phrase, put it in quotes. For example: “crazy goat help”.

Topic tools

The green bar that sticks to the bottom of every thread includes a button that is labeled “Tools: watch, ignore..”. Hiding in here is a useful pair of links: one that will bring you to the very first post, and one that will send you back to the last post that you read. If you find yourself catching up on an old thread, this gives you a way to jump to the beginning and then return to where you left off.