Have you heard of Ravelry? It’s a site designed just for knitters and crocheters, and combines a social network with a pattern directory and lots of organizing. Plus, it’s free! Read on to learn more about how Ravelry can help you.
Ravelry was started when a crafter named Jess wanted a way to keep track of her patterns and yarn. Her husband Casey worked in computing, so he built a site just for her. She shared it with her friends, and they all wanted to join too. Since Ravelry was grown organically from people who were into crocheting and knitting, it’s designed just for us.
There are lots of things you can do with Ravelry, but we’ll be focusing on three: pattern directory, yarn organizing, and social content.
Ravelry is free to join, but you do need to sign up to use most of the features. Just go to the homepage and click the Join Now! button to sign up. You will need to sign in to access most of the links to Ravelry in this guide.
Ravelry has a humongous pattern directory, with over 600,000 patterns at the time of this writing. Each pattern has detailed information about the type of yarn used, the amount of yarn, techniques, difficulty, etc. so you can sort to find the perfect pattern for you. (For more detail on how to use the pattern area, see this guide.)
If you find a pattern you like, you can save it to your favorites to make it easy to find again. You can also make a queue to keep track of the patterns you want to make. On a pattern entry, the buttons to Add to Favorites, Add to Queue, and Add to Library are on the upper right. There is a also a button to “Hook It” or to “Cast On” (depending on if the pattern is crochet or knit), so you can go ahead and tell Ravelry you are starting a project.
When you start a project, you can add it to your projects section and keep track of the yarn, hook/needles, and pattern you’re using, so you can go back to it later. You can also add pictures to keep a record of what you’ve made. When you’re looking in the pattern directory, you can see examples of projects other users have made from that pattern, including their pictures and notes.
Super Saver is the yarn with the most projects — almost 211,000! There are also almost 20,000 patterns calling for Super Saver on the site, and 31,500 patterns for Red Heart yarns in general. We put all of our patterns into the Ravelry pattern directory, so you can use Ravelry to keep track of the details of the Red Heart patterns you’re working on.
Ravelry has a large database of yarns, which includes all of the current Red Heart yarns.
You can add the yarns you own to your stash, with details of the type of yarn, the color, the dye lot, how much you have, where you bought it, and how much it cost. You can also add notes to yourself of where you are storing it, and add a picture so you can find it easier. If you put your stash into Ravelry, when you look at patterns the site will automatically give you suggestions of yarns you can use for a particular pattern based on what is in your stash.
Ravelry has thousands of groups you can join. Some groups are by geographical area, some by general interest (such as a tv show or sports team), some by yarn, some by type of project…there are groups for everything! And if the group you want doesn’t exist, you can create your own.
Our favorite group is the Red Heart Lovers group, which is full of information and pattern ideas for our yarn. They also have a monthly knit and crochet alongs.