Miss May MKAL; Answers to FAQs

a graphic featuring a floral vine with birds. Across the middle is a pale blue banner with the words Miss May MKAL. Another teal banner is along the bottom with the hashtag #missmaymkal and a CH brand mark

We’re just a handful of days from the official beginning of The Miss May MKAL, which means it’s 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!

No spoilers, but let’s see if I can satisfy your curiosity and settle your anxiety with a few answers about the upcoming Miss May MKAL.

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 Miss May MKAL is to buy the pattern on Ravelry or on Gumroad and choose some beautiful yarn.

There’s no official signup, but being part of the community really enriches the experience. If you’ve purchased on Ravelry make sure you setup a project page for your Miss May 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!

For Gumroad folks, the best way to follow along is #MissMayMKAL on Instagram. Of course if you’re posting on social media, make sure to use the spoiler image ahead of posting any photos. 

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 is the first clue going to 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 Tuesday, June 7th. Once you’ve purchased the pattern in the presale, you’ll be notified through Ravelry or email as soon as it 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 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 early bird price is available until Tuesday, June 7th is just £4 (plus applicable VAT). Then it will be the regular price of £5 (plus applicable VAT).

Do I need a special code for the Early Bird price?

No, the Early Bird price is already applied, no code required. The 20% Early Bird discount will apply until Tuesday, June 7th.

I think the amount of the price is wrong, maybe I didn’t get the discount?

The price of the pattern does not include VAT. Ravelry and Gumroad automatically add 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.

I bought the pattern but I don’t see any knitting instructions!

This is a presale period for the MKAL. When you buy the pattern you’ll get an info sheet with yarn specifics and some general hints to help you prepare. The pattern will be released piece by piece, with a new clue to knit each week.

When will the clues be released?

Clue #1: Tuesday, June 7th
Clue #2: Tuesday, June 14th
Clue #3: Tuesday June 21st
Clue #4: Tuesday, June 28th
Clue #5: Tuesday, July 5th

The final pattern reveal on social media will be Tuesday, July 12th. 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 26th 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 #MissMayMKAL

hese answers should cover almost everything, but of course if you have other questions that I didn’t address here, you can pop into MKAL Chat 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.

I hope you are feeling more prepared to take the leap now

Buy Miss May MKAL at the Early Bird Price on Ravelry

Buy Miss May MKAL at the Early Bird Price on Gumroad

Remember, you also still have time to enter MKAL giveaway! Enter on Ravelry here and find instructions for entering on Instagram here.

I’ll be drawing the winners just before the first clue comes out, and you could win a lovely prize!

I can’t wait to get started!

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