New Beginnings January 2, 2013

One goal for the new year is to knit down the stash!

I have so many topics I could write about. I have been away from the blog and consequently, I have lots of news. But rather than bombard you with too much to read or too many pictures of WIPs, I have this for you to mull over.

How to start a New Year.... Try listening to and watching a podcast.

Do you follow podcasts? Let me tell you what a podcast is..... a podcast is a video recording of a host who describes and shows different things they are working on. Many podcasters have KALs, (KnitALongs) and giveaways. They will guide you to new ideas, fibers, patterns and events. They keep me company as I knit and they definitely inspire new ideas and techniques for me to try.

Try adding podcasts to your knitting routine this winter, you will find a knitting circle that will be available to you in the wee hours, and the inspiration and laughs will tide you over until you can hang with your fiber buddies in real time.

Here are some of my favorites.

Amy Beth of the Fat Squirrel Speaks is entertaining, enlightening and so knowledgeable that it almost rubs off on the viewer.

Amy and Megan of the Stockinette Zombies do a great job of sharing their WIPs and FOs and they are enablers of the highest order.They also have planned Zombie Knitpocalypse, a gathering planned for next June, if you want to hang out with other knitters and join in their yarn crawl in Minnesota.

Another top podcasts is TheKnitgirllls. Leslie and Lala of The Knitgirls do a great job of sharing their knitting projects and results of their spinning; they are a wealth of information on upcoming events and recently released yarn clubs and patterns. Check out some of their video tutorials on making an afterthought heel in socks.

And last but surely not least is the podcast SingleHandedKnits. Mel is an inspiration and a gracious host, she films at local beaches in Hawaii and shares her projects and queued plans for future knitting. But lately, she has taken up spinning and OMG, she makes me want to start. If you are a newbie to spinning or just curious, you need to know she will be doing a show tomorrow to share her recent accomplishments (maybe a month, maybe less) at the espinner she uses.

Mel has been at podcasting for less than a year but she has grown a community that now exceeds 1000 members. She has a forum page on Ravelry that helps you to keep up with the different happenings in the group. She sponsored Sock the Vote and I expect we will see other fun events to join in upcoming weeks.

How to start a New Year..... join a KAL.

What is a KAL? The acronym stands for Knit A Long and you will find many different ones on Ravelry. Why would someone want to join a KAL? I like to be in the company of others who are working on a similar project, for help, inspiration and to cheer on their efforts. Often, the leader of the KAL will break a project into do-able chunks.

Paula of the Knitting Pipeline audio podcast started the Ellison Bay KAL on 1/1/2012. Navigate to her Ravelry forum page and you will find the steps of the KAL spelled out for you. And if you can't keep up, or don't finish, or cast off after the end of the KAK, you will still find it an interesting journey. But one of the benefits of being entered in a KAL is the prizes.

This is my project page photo entered into a KAL forum on Ravelry.

When you leave a comment in the forum, (snapping a photo of your project as it progresses is common), your entry will be one of those drawn to win a prize if you finish by the end date. Paula is giving away prizes of Quince and Company Yarn and patterns.

Ellison Bay, pattern by Paula Emons-Fuessle

I made an Ellison Bay in the fall and found it to be a fun and quick knit. I gave it as a gift and the recipient loves how the shoulder shaping keeps it sitting in place.

So, will you join in and try something new? Or maybe you are a listener of podcasts? Tell me which you listen to each week. Have you ever tried a KAL? Let me know if you find any that you think you will join. I have other news to share with you, but in the hopes of being direct (hmmmmm, ????) I will save that info for a nother post.

Happy New Year and happy knitting!


Evelyn said…
I'm an avid podcast listener and love looking forward to new episodes with glee. As for KAL, I love 'em ... happy knitting, E!
Megan said…
Happy New Year! Thanks for the honorable mention of Stockinette Zombies! Are you planning to attend Zombie Knitpocalypse?
Erin_in_Boston said…
Hello Megan! I really want to go to the event, but I teach and it may be tricky getting those days off. I would so love to be in the energy of the group and just sit and smile and knit with everyone. Thanks so much for leaving me a comment!
Enid said…
Happy 2013, Erin!!!!
I watch several podcasts and enjoy them immensely
I don't join in KALs.
Current work is more charity projects

take care,
laknitter said…
Hi Erin:
I have only listened to a few podcasts and always and struggle to find new loved the post. Would love to have you do a podcast session for us in knit group some night and share your expertise and help someone like me... Lauren
Cleo14 said…
I've never listened topodcasts but, I think it is something I'll try this year.

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