Holy crappers!

May 3rd, 2007

What a day!

Thanks so much everyone for the wonderful blog posts about Ravelry. It is certainly getting the word out about the site!! We have over 600 people on the invite request list- a little overwhelming, but in a good way! We really, really appreciate all your help.

Just to give you an idea… In one day, we have jumped from 100 to 220 users. yay! We are sending out invitations to the waiting list; we sent out 150 today and will be doing more. If you do hear any questions about people getting into Ravelry, can you guys assure them that we are inviting people on a regular basis from that sign up list on the front page? Appreciate any help you can provide as Casey and I can only type so fast over here. ;)

We also assigned all of you guys new invites earlier this afternoon- they appeared on the top, right corner. If you signed in after that, we will be giving out more fairly soon. It may be after this weekend though since Casey and I will both be out of town- me at Maryland Sheep and Wool (woohoo!) and Casey visiting his friend in Baltimore.

MOST IMPORTANT! Can you guys give us 5 minutes of your time to fill out this little survey for us? It is 4 questions. Please? huh? huh?

Quick update from Casey: As of 5:30pm Eastern, we’ve received 94 surveys. You guys are awesome!! Oh, and FIVE HUNDRED AND SEVENTY FIVE projects were added today. You guys are Raveling when you should be working, aren’t you?

As always, want to say a warm welcome to all the new Ravelers! So happy to have you here- hope the site is fun so far. :) I know I have really enjoyed seeing all the new people, yarns, and projects!

So, what’s up?! Well, lots actually!

1. Casey has put together a new Discuss section- a kind of forum. It is going to be linked into the pattern and yarn pages so that everything on the site flows together and info is easy to find. Post a new topic! Respond to the ones that are up there! I am already having fun with it myself. (Great idea, Kelly Sue!)

2. We are finally ready to come out of the closet! Sorta. Casey made a new login page the other day so that people coming by can get an idea what the site is all about and new folks can also sign up for an invite.

So… you can write about Ravelry on your blog if you want! Yaay! My heart is beating all fast just thinking about it. haha

It would be super helpful if you told people what you like about it and you can link people back to our main page. As I said, we have a button there where friends can sign in for an invite. The only reason we are doing it this way is so we can grow a bit gradually… so that Casey and won’t lose our minds over here! Everyone is welcome though!!

We will also be assigning all you beta testers some more invites- so keep an eye on here when that is ready. I will do another quick post or an email.

In pure blogger style, here are three quick badges that Casey threw together to put on your sidebar. We will have other badges soon and more blog integration once we are all open to the public (will be within the next couple weeks). We are thinking probably something like little pics of your projects, etc.

 Ravelry-88X31  Ravelry-88X31-White  Ravelry-88X31-Borderless
3. You know what is one of the most fun parts of having your own website? SWAG, baby. :) I got a bunch of stuff to hand out at Maryland Sheep & Wool- some buttons and some little cards for me. woohoo!

Img 1422-2 Img 1417-2

The buttons are from the fabulous folks at Button Arcade– they were super nice and made some awesome buttons for us, really quickly. (Thanks, Adrian!)

The silly “business cards” are actually the famous Moo Cards. I am totally addicted now and need more. ;) They are so tiny and smooth feeling. The printing is great too- very crisp.

4. Speaking of Maryland Sheep and Wool... who is going?? Would you guys be willing to pimp out Ravelry to people you see and meet? We have 500 buttons so I can hand them out to you guys to give away. Anybody up for that?

Contact me, and we can figure out how to meet up! You can also go to the discussion thread I started here to talk!

If you see me at the festival, I will be the short- haired geek with the big Ravelry tote bag. Awwww, yeah. ;)

Img 1414-2

Posh Feature-1
Posh Yarn‘s Sophia 6-Ply (pure cashmere sport weight) shown in the Tipsy colorway.

This yarn is hand dyed in a little coastal village in Wales, UK, and each colorway is unique and unrepeated. New yarn is added to the website every week on Sunday at 6pm (GMT), where it is snapped up quickly by Posh Yarn addicts. So mark your calendars- good stuff goes fast!

Yarnies- Welcome!

April 30th, 2007

Thank you so much for checking Ravelry out! One of our goals for the site was to provide a showplace for great independent dyers and spinners and we are so excited to have you on board.

So, what benefits are there to being a part of the Ravelry community?

  1. A free, clear and concise online design portfolio with information about the patterns (gauge, yarn requirements, needle/ hook sizes, etc)
  2. We are putting the finishing touches on a low-cost pattern delivery system with Paypal. Ravelry can be used in conjunction with your own site or on its own to deliver pattern .pdfs to users- we will not be charging for this service (although using paypal does have a fee). After purchasing the pattern via Paypal, users can then opt to have it saved in their Ravelry notebook or sent to their email. This system will also give you statistics on your pattern distribution.
  3. A gallery of finished objects– Ravelry shows that information in the pattern page, which then could be linked on your own personal website.
  4. You will also be able to view the people working on your designs in one central location. In an ideal world, we’d love to see the designers participate in the pattern pages- contributing corrections, answering questions, etc. (You could subscribe to an rss feed for your patterns, for example.) You can also see what modifications people made, comments on your pattern in Ravelry and out in blogland (blog post integration is built into the site), and what yarns people used in one central location.

How to Get Started with Ravelry

1. Create your account (from the email invitation sent to you), fill in your profile info and photo in the About Me section. Once you have done this, we will connect that profile to your design portfolio and you can edit your patterns’ information and add pictures for those designs from your flickr account.

You can also edit the information at the top of your yarn profile page by clicking on the pencil at the top. We have a small questionnaire that we thought might be interesting for users to read, so fill that out when you can!

  • What is your design philosophy?
  • If you could describe your knitwear with one word, what would it be?
  • What is your favorite design of your own so far?
  • Who/ what is your design inspiration?
  • What is your favorite finished knit?

2. You can also use Ravelry to keep track of your FOs and works in progress. We also have sections for a project queue, yarn stash and needle/ hook inventories in your personal notebook. You can add pictures to your notebook by uploading project and stash pictures into flickr, if you do not already have them in there. (It is important to add your flickr account name into your ravelry profile or importing your photos into Ravelry will not work correctly.)

(To see what it looks like you can go into my frecklegirl notebook- I have information in all those sections.)

3. Finally, we ask that you please subscribe with your favorite newsreader (bloglines, google reader, etc) to our news blog on the front page of the site so we can keep you updated on new features: http://www.ravelry.com/news.rss

Things to Keep in Mind:

Ravelry is in its testing phase- We really would love your input and your reaction to the site, from the perspective of an independent designer. We are looking for general usability critiques, suggestions and *any and all* concerns or comments that you might have while using it. We want it to the best site it can be and can only do that with your help. The site will only be as good as we make it! (I know you are totally swamped right now but let us know whenever you have the time…)

As you can see by the length of this page, we are so excited about this site! We really hope that it will be a way to help independent designers like yourself to get their patterns well- deserved exposure.

(As a side note, we are inviting people in bits and pieces- not because I want it to be exclusive or anything but because we only have one Casey code monkey to keep up with updates and bugs! So please keep this under wraps for the time being…)

If you have any questions about any information on this page, feel free to email Jessica.

Thank you and, again, welcome!!

Messaging Issues

April 25th, 2007

So some people are having issues reading their messages… Casey will be taking a look at this problem as soon as he gets home tonight!

Thanks for letting us know it was giving you trouble.

Sorry for any inconvenience!

___

UPDATE: Casey fixed the message problem. For some reason, it was not allowing people without invites left to view messages. Sheesh! That will teach you for doing what we ask… haha

So you should be able to open up messages no problem now- let us know if anything weird happens!!

Thanks for your patience!

Update 4/25

April 24th, 2007

Welcome to all the new folks! So happy to have you join us!

I have a bit of a long update this time… That will teach me for procrastinating.

First off, Casey and I thought you guys might want to see how much we’ve grown! Right now, Ravelry has:

– 90 active users – 22 designers, 11 yarn dyers/spinners
– 1146 projects
– 855 patterns
– 2668 photos
– 542 stashed yarns (1656 skeins)
– 639 needles
– 328 blog posts linked

Wowee! :)

Second, we just wanted to say a quick thank you to the following groups, as we are developing these sections of the site:

– Ravelers outside the U.S.
– Crocheters
– Designers
– Yarn Dyers and Spinners

You guys have been very patient as we are adding new features and we really appreciate it. Please let us know if there is something you think would make the site easier to use or more welcoming. Feedback, as always, is welcome.

So, what’s new?
1. Messaging system. You may have noticed a little ‘new message’ tag in the top right corner of the header. You can now send messages to other Ravelers right on the site and get notifications for comments, favorites and friends.

2. We forgot to add a way to delete from your stash- now you can do that by putting your mouse under the yarn pic and clicking the trashcan.

3. Casey has been working to get Ravelry to work in IE- he thinks he got the majority of bugs so let him know if you are an Internet Explorer user and notice anything strange.

4. He also started putting together more stash stuff: you can now mark yarn as: “stashed, used up, willing to trade/ sell, traded/ tossed) We are hoping to have a kind of market area where all the marked yarn shows up for sale or trade. We just put that up tonight so let us know what you think.

5. I am working on connecting some pictures on the site- you may have some messages from me requesting to use your project image as the official photo for the pattern on Ravelry. You do not have to feel obligated to say okay but it does help the site be more helpful for searching for patterns if there are pictures, obviously.

6. Casey updated the yarn dyers/ spinners portfolio pages. You guys can now add your logo, yarn website and description to your yarn brand pages. Don’t forget that you can also add pictures in for your individual yarns from Flickr and you can edit your yarn information as well.

7. Some of you have asked if we will be doing anything for spinners and we definitely will be doing that soon… Adding fiber to stash, more handspun info, etc. Any suggestions on what else is needed?

So that is about it! We will be updating a little more often so I don’t have these super long posts…

Oh one last thing! Casey and I have been just blown away by the support and encouragement- thanks so much. We are so happy to have people in here and enjoying the site! We will be giving out some more invitations fairly soon so think if there is anyone else you know who would be interested in helping…

Help! The sky is falling!

April 19th, 2007

Okay, you may have noticed that our project pictures are all gone- that is because Flickr seems to be down at the moment…

Just an fyi.

Also a good learning experience, yet again… guess we need to have a cache of the photos. ;)

__

Update: Apparently, it is just a problem with Comcast. Gah.

Invites Open!!

April 19th, 2007

Hi, everyone!

I just wanted to say a huuuuge THANK YOU to all of you for helping us get our baby website on its feet! We have come such a long way in a short time and it is all because of you guys!

We are at the point now that we would like to take another step toward opening the website for good: we have given each of you 3 invitations to share with your friends.

The only thing we ask is to use these invites carefully- we really need people at this point who have the time and interest to use the site. You can find your invitations on the top right corner of the header in Ravelry, by the logout button.

Oh- and a couple boring bits:

– Please don’t forget to rate the patterns and yarns in your project detail pages- we noticed that some people are not using them… You can find them in the boxes to the right of your project info- it brings the boxes up as soon as you have saved a project with a pattern and yarn.

– If you have not done so already, please subscribe to this Ravelry news blog using
your favorite newsreader (Bloglines, Google Reader, etc) at http://www.ravelry.com/news.rss. Casey and I hope is a much better way for us to keep you guys updated on new features and news, rather than sending e-mails.

If you have any questions or concerns, please let us know! We really appreciate
everyone’s feedback.

Thank you! We are so excited to see some more new faces!!! :)

Knitters / Crocheters- Tour

April 12th, 2007

The site is organized into several sections. The first is the Notebook and it includes:

  1. A free, clear and concise index of all your knitting and/or crochet projects. In this section, you can coordinate each work in progress and finished object with the yarn you used, the pattern designer and source, needle/ hook sizes you used, date you started and completed the project, and link it to related groups on Ravelry. You can also attach blog posts to a project, as well as enter pictures and additional notes. You can look at all your projects in a gallery or spreadsheet view, and in the future you will be able to export this to an excel spreadsheet (soon!). If there is interest, we can also develop have a function that will allow you to bind your finished objects in a beautiful book!
  2. A project queue. Finally, something better than a bookmark folder! You can track, tag, and rank the patterns that you would like to do in the future, including notes on the recipient, the “done by” date, and the yarn you might use. You can print out an individual project or your entire queue (including yarn requirements) for a trip to the yarn store or a fiber festival.
  3. Stash Inventory. Admitting you have a problem is the first step toward recovery. ;) In this section you can enter pictures of your yarn and keep track of dye lots, colorways, and number of skeins, and see it all in a gallery or spreadsheet view.
  4. Needle/ Hook Inventory. Keep track of your knitting needles and crochet hooks, and print out the inventory as a handy wallet card – we want to help keep you from buying four sets of the same exact needle or your 15th size f crochet hook!
  5. Friends. In this section, you can see what your friends have been working on, what yarns they have added to their stash, and what projects they have added to their queue. You can keep posted on the progress of their projects – the Friends’ Activity Tab will show you every time one of your Ravelry friends adds a new photo to a project! (You can also subscribe to this information by rss feed.)
  6. Blogs. You can connect entries from your blog to specific projects in Ravelry – once your blog is linked to your profile, Ravelry automatically connects a blog post to your Ravelry project page when you include a link to the project in your entry. Just like magic!
  7. Favorites. Like the Flickr favorites section, you can use this tab to track other users’ projects that inspire you, as well as stash, patterns, designers, yarn brands, and ads.
  8. Message other Ravelers from all over the world! (And Ravelry chat features are coming soon!)

Ravelry offers more than a Notebook for your own information, you can also take advantage of the all-access parts of the site:

  1. Browse for patterns by tags, pattern type, gauge, rating, difficulty, designer, yardage required, etc.
  2. Search for yarns by fiber content, gauge, producer/ dyer, popularity. (More coming to this section soon!)
  3. Discuss patterns, yarns, techniques, and Ravelry in our forums and in Ravelry groups. You can use “magic links” to link back into the pattern and yarn entries in Ravelry so information will be easy to find. Also, use this section to talk about new features and suggestions for Ravelry: For the Love of Ravelry. Go there to check out what other Ravelers have suggested!
  4. Browse the knitalong and crochetalong directory. You can enter your own -along (in your project notebook) or participate in someone else’s. (-Along website admins and pattern designers will be able to track participants without having to enter all the info themselves.)
  5. Track the fiber events going on in your area. (More in this section coming soon!)

And more content is being added every day! Send us your ideas!

What is Ravelry.com?

  • Learn what Ravelry is about, who is behind the scenes, and why we started the site here.
  • To get a tour, go here.
  • If you are a designer, get info on what Ravelry can do for you!
  • Super busy? Just want to see how people are using Ravelry? Check out Jessica’s Notebook.

Okay, ready to get started?

  1. Click on your user name in the top right corner to go to your profile page and fill in the About Me section.

  2. To begin adding projects, click on the My Notebook tab. Once you’re on this page, click the “add new project” button. This will bring up your new project page where you can add pictures (from Flickr, other online photo hosting sites, or uploaded directly from your computer) and fill in the pattern, yarn, and other information about your project.
  3. Feel free to play and look around the site! Browse around in the People and Pattern tabs to see what’s new. Connect with other users in the Forums. Check out people’s projects and stashes. Leave comments, and add projects to your favorites and patterns to your queue! Add people to your friends list!

Finding Help

There several great help resources – click on the “Help” tab to learn more and to find links to the Help Chat and helpful groups here on Ravelry. Also, we talk about all things Ravelry on the For the Love of Ravelry board in the forums.

Thanks! Please enjoy Ravelry!