What order should I put my yarns in!? Answers to FAQs about the Stillness MKAL

Amanda —  June 26, 2020 — Leave a comment

The first clue of The Stillness MKAL was just revealed, and we have new participants signing up daily…and a few still on the fence! That makes this a great time to dispel any questions or worries you might have about taking part. Whenever we embark on a new adventure, lots of questions come my way. Since I’m being deliberately mysterious about this mystery knitalong, it makes sense that there will be even more than usual!

So let’s get started with some answers to set your mind at ease and help you get even more excited for what lies ahead:

How do I join the MKAL? Do I need to sign up somewhere?
All you need to do to be a part of The Stillnesss MKAL is to buy the pattern on Ravelry and select three skeins of lovely yarn!

There’s no official signup, but being part of the community really enriches the experience. Make sure you set up a project page for your Stillness Shawl to track and share your progress as you go (just use a photo of your yarn or the placeholder images below as your first image: it keeps the mystery for everyone else!) You can also join us on the chat thread in the Curious Handmade Ravelry group. As the weeks and clues go on, we will have separate spoiler and non-spoiler threads for each clue where you can discuss your knitting experience and find support and encouragement to finish your shawl!

I have my three skeins of yarn but I don’t know what order to use them in! How will I know if they’ll look good?
Figuring out yarn is the most nerve-wracking part of a mystery knitalong, I know. To help put your mind at ease, my last two podcasts have had some extra clues and reassurance. Episode 298 has the most info: you can listen or read the transcript at this link. There are no big spoilers in there, just some hints on placement. The most important thing is to choose three skeins that you love and that you think look beautiful together, and then you can’t go wrong. I promise!

I have joined, but I’m having issues accessing Ravelry right now. How can I get my clues?

If you cannot visit Ravelry right now and have purchased the MKAL, please email support@curioushandmade.com and we will do our best to help you!

The listed gauge for the pattern looks loose to me. Are you sure it’s right?
The gauge of 18 stitches and 32 rows = 10 cm in stockinette is correct. It’s a fairly loose gauge to create a drapey fabric. But gauge is not critical at all for this shawl, as long as you have enough yarn. Swatch to play with your colours and to make sure you like the fabric your yarn is creating, but don’t stress out over getting exact gauge.

I’m so excited I’m counting down the hours! What time of day do the clues come out?
It’s a surprise! We are working across several time zones and are sometimes at the mercy of technology, so to avoid disappointment or letting anyone down, I can’t be more specific than Thursdays! Once you’ve purchased the pattern, you’ll be notified through Ravelry as soon as each clue arrives!

This is my first MKAL. What can I expect?
First of all, thank you for your bravery and trust taking a leap and a chance on a pattern you haven’t seen before. I am honoured!!

A mystery knit along is all about surprises: you buy the pattern without knowing what the finished design will look like and get one clue a week until the whole pattern is released. The community aspect is huge, too: people share their progress each week and speculate on what might be coming next. Knitting a project with a group is lots of fun and supportive  – you will find lots of company in the MKAL chat threads and people to ask questions if you run into any problems.

This is my first Curious Handmade shawl. What can I expect?
Enjoyment, on the whole! Relaxing, satisfying knitting. And of course, a beautiful accessory at the end!

On the more technical side of things, you can expect clarity. My patterns are clearly written in the unique Curious Handmade Percentage Checklist style with stitch count for every row and percentages of stitches knit to help you pace yourself and estimate yarn needed. Directions are written in full and also include charted instructions for any lace sections.

I’ve knit many Curious Handmade shawls before. What can I expect?

Well, you’ll recognise the checklist format, and if you’re a fan of my patterns (thank you!) I think you’ll find that this project is quite “typical” of my designs: some lace, feminine, easy-to-wear, and a little dreamy. I also think it will keep you guessing until the last clue is finally revealed!

What is the level of difficulty?
It is beginner to adventurous beginner/intermediate throughout.

It is a slight step up from beginner in places due to some easy lace and the amount of knitting involved but it definitely isn’t difficult in any sense. There might be a handful of rows where you really have to concentrate on where you are setting up a new pattern – but it is very achievable for an adventurous lace beginner. And lifelines are always helpful if you are worried! Here is a helpful tutorial on adding lifelines to your knitting.

How much does it cost?
The price for the whole MKAL is £5 (plus applicable VAT).

I think the amount of the price is wrong, it looks higher than £5?
The price of the pattern does not include VAT. Ravelry automatically adds VAT to all purchases of patterns in the EU when you check out. The amount varies by country, so it may show as a higher price than £4, depending on your location. I’m sorry about any inconvenience, but it is out of my control.

When will the clues be released?
Clue #1 release: Thursday, June 25th
Clue #2 release: Thursday, July 2nd
Clue #3 release: Thursday, July 9th
Clue #4 release: Thursday, July 16th
Clue #5 release: Thursday, July 23rd

The final pattern reveal on social media will be Friday, July 31st. We’ll be avoiding spoilers until then. From that date you can share your finished shawl anywhere you like without spoiler alerts!

The knitalong will continue until Friday, August 28th to allow plenty of comfortable knitting time. So you can go at your own pace and still be in with a chance to win a prize for your finished shawl!
At the end of the MKAL I’ll compile all the clues into one pattern document so that you have everything in one place if you’d like to knit it again.

I don’t have time to commit to an MKAL right now, can I still participate somehow?
Life sometimes gets in the way of knitting, and not everyone can keep up with the weekly clue releases. That is perfectly okay! You can jump in and out at any point, or even wait until all the clues are out before you begin. The KAL will run for about a month after the last clue is released, so you can still join in and post your finished shawl on your own schedule. For a taste of the lovely MKAL community experience, hop into the chat threads now and then, and don’t forget to check in on Instagram with the hashtag #StillnesssMKAL

These answers should cover almost everything, but of course if you have other questions that I didn’t address here, you can pop into MKAL Chatter Thread on Ravelry for more answers, or email support@curioushandmade.com for help! As you can imagine, this is a very busy time, so your patience while waiting for a reply is truly appreciated.

Are you feeling more prepared to take the leap now?

Buy the Stillness Shawl MKAL and join the fun!

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