Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Fabulous knitting websites

I LOVE the internet. It is an amazing resource, although obviously not 100% reliable, it can provide the greatest inspiration as well as being a useful tutor - great for knitting. As with everything internet related there are an abundance of knitting websites and even more general craft websites but I thought I would share some of my favourites.

www.vam.ac.uk - Victoria and Albert Museum.

I love the V&A Museum anyway but I only realised recently that the website has a whole section on knitting. You can find out about the origins of knitting (fascinating and complicated); articles about the different regional styles of knitting, interviews with designers and my favourite discovery – ‘Knit a work of art from a free pattern’. The free pattern is for a pair of ‘Conrad’ gloves by Freddie Robins…

'Conrad' gloves by Freddie Robins

‘Freddie Robins's subversive knitting includes a series of gloves where pairs join, single gloves have ten fingers or each finger sprouts a new glove. 'Conrad' is a character from the 19th century book of cautionary tales, Struwwelpeter, by Dr Heinrich Hoffmann. Conrad's mother warns Conrad that if he continues to suck his thumbs the scissor-man will come and cut them off. He ignores her warnings and 'Snip! Snap! Snip!' he loses his thumbs. .’

Elsewhere on the website offers a glimpse into the wonderful environment of the V&A which can only fuel further inspiration and wonder at how creative people are.

www.ravelry.com – An online knitting and crochet community

Ravelry has a really active number of forums and groups (3 million users!) which is what I mainly use it for, my username is pinksamc. I generally go on the forums and get involved in the knitting conversations or there are whole groups dedicated to knitting blogging. I haven’t used much else on the website yet but you can see what projects others users are working on; find free patterns; swap wool etc.

www.pinterest.com – Pinboard style photo-sharing

 Anyone who knows me will know how much I love Pinterest! It is the main reason for my almost constant lack of phone battery (they have an app as well). I am sure most of you will have seen or at least heard of Pinterest. Basically you can view photos (generally with a link behind them) of really cool stuff and you can ‘pin’ it to your personal ‘pinboard’. There is absolutely everything on this site; I like to think of it as the best bits of the entire internet, well, for me anyway. It is inspiring, creative…just go on and have a look.

www.ukhandknitting.com – ‘The Knitty-pedia of all things hand knitting & crochet’

I have only recently discovered this site. There are some brilliant articles about all aspects of knitting as well as directories for knitting groups, wool shops etc. My favourite page on there is knitting for charity, a list of charities that are requesting knitters/crocheters to complete and send to them for charity! How fantastic is that – altruistic knitting! They also have some pretty cool statistics; do you know 4 million women in the UK have an interest in knitting? I have no idea of the viability of their research, but sounds pretty good doesn’t it?!

www.youtube.com – Sharing videos

And last but not least You Tube! Imagine this…you are in the middle of a very exciting project (for me it was adult booties), it is all going ok and then the pattern changes…to a stitch you don’t know. So I look in my trusty Knittygritty book and IT JUST DOESN’T MAKE SENSE! This happened to me with K2togtbl and You Tube came to the rescue! It makes such a difference actually seeing someone do the stitch in front of you and even the most patient of knitting friend or tutor would be tired of repeating the stitch every line you forget (I do that – every line, very annoying). With You Tube you just press play and someone will show you their view of doing the stitch as many times as you need! Some of the videos are a bit dodgy but there are so many that it doesn’t take long to find one that fits your learning style. Just try not to get distracted by videos of dancing basset hounds or a panda sneezing as I do….

So there we have it, a small selection of knitting websites or websites that are useful for knitting. There are MASSES more really good websites but these are just some of the ones I use regularly.

Until next time knitters,

Sam x

Lulu & the blanket Mum crocheted for me AGES ago.x

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