Updated: Jan 1
If you like to talk to people about your knitting or crochet, but not necessarily like to sit in the same room and stitch with others in a group, then knit-a-longs (KALs) and crochet-a-longs (CALs) might be perfect for you.
Online make-a-longs (MAL) are a beautiful thing. They let you find advice and camaraderie in ways that just weren’t readily accessible before the internet. A knit or crochet along is usually a virtual event where makers gather to work on the same project together. A pattern is released, along with suggestions for yarn and other details. Prize details are revealed.
Some have a start and end date, then photos are shared through social media. Others continue running throughout the year as participants start at different times and work at their own pace. Keeping track of the project, asking, or answering questions, and sharing images of your progress might be structured around a blog with a thread of posts and comments, a private Ravelry, Instagram or Facebook group, YouTube videos, or another online forum. It’s a wonderful around-the-clock way to join with local and international knitters, crocheters, and designers.
● Large-scale Inclusivity: Projects that are done simultaneously in large groups buzz with an energy only a community can generate. When people throughout the world join in to make something, we make amazing connections.
● Common Ground Resource: There’s no better way to see the raw work of other knitters and crocheters than in one of these gatherings. The internet makes it easy to share your progress, warts, and all, and get reassurance and help from others who have already conquered the tricky bits.
● Inspiration Galore: It is nice to get a peek at what yarn or shade others have chosen. In a klatch of similar products made by different hands, there will be astounding differences. What a great way to stimulate ideas and gain insight into others’ color choices or pattern changes.
● Productive Decompression: For introverts or shy beginners, these happenings can keep you in your comfort zone while allowing you to reach out as little or as much as you prefer. Relax and knit or crochet on your own couch and at the same time converse with a friendly co-maker when the mood strikes you.
● Fun-time Teasers! In some knit-a-longs or crochet-a-longs they release the pattern in stages so it’s exciting to work on one part while anticipating the next. In the Mystery versions of these make-a-longs there is also an element of surprise as new clues come out. You don’t know what you’re knitting until the very end. Imagine the outcome as each member solves the puzzle for a climactic reveal!
There are many ways to join a KAL, CAL, or MAL. Simply Google it and you’ll find a ton of them. Knitting podcasters are always talking about them on YouTube! You can also search for them on IG #MAL #KAL #CAL #MKAL #MCAL. Search for the kind that you like best. Small, medium, or large projects. Basic or advanced skill levels. Themes or mystery make-a-longs. There’s literally something out there for everyone and usually the prizes are AMAZING! Imagine winning beautiful yarn or a project bag just for knitting a scarf and submitting a pretty picture of it : )
Enjoy and let me know if you’ve ever participated in any type of make-a-long!