Do you have yarn in your stash that you just don't know what to do with yet? I'd be shocked if you didn't say yes as I'm sure almost everyone has at least one skein stashed without a pattern idea to go with it. (I know I have way more than one skein that meets that!) So what can you do to help find a pattern to match up to the yarn? Ravelry to the rescue! Ravelry offers quite a few different ways to help you figure out which pattern to choose.
Check Other Projects Using the Yarn
First and foremost, Ravelry is a database, and one of the ways to use it is to see what other people have made with the same yarn. To do so, find the yarn in the Ravelry database (if you've added it to your stash, you can just click the link in your stash entry to take you to the yarn). I've created a video tutorial for this process, so you can watch that and/or follow the written instructions below.
From there, you have two options: click the pattern ideas tab or the projects tab.
For this option, you can scroll through the list or you can narrow down the choices. For example, if you are looking for crochet patterns, use the drop down box that says All crafts and choose crochet. You can also narrow the type of project, so if you know that you want to make a shawl, you can choose that option. Finally, you can narrow the options down based upon how many skeins you have.
When you click the Projects tab, you'll see every project that anyone has ever made using this yarn. If you want to narrow down the options, you can use the options in the Filter these projects drop down box. (I find Number of Colors to be quite helpful, especially if I have just one skein and one color so I don't see options made using more than one color.) The video tutorial shows you how to use several of these filters. You can also type in a specific search term in the Search inside projects box. I find typing in the colorway name to be especially helpful here to filter to those projects that have used the same colorway you have. (This is especially helpful for a variegated yarn.)
Using the above options works best for yarns that have been used in many projects. If you have a yarn that doesn't have as many projects, you can still check the projects for ideas, but sometimes there just aren't enough projects for anything to be generated in the pattern ideas tab.
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