MetaKnittingCircle? October 14, 2020 7:45 PM   Subscribe

A while back I jokingly said something about how we should have a Metafilter Zoom knitting group, and a couple of people MeMailed me to express interest in actually doing it. Should we? It doesn't have to be limited to knitting: it could be a general hang-out-on-Zoom (or some other platform) while-doing-your-small-craft-project group.

I don't know how to organize a Zoom knitting group, so if people are up for it, we should discuss logistics.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious to MetaFilter-Related at 7:45 PM (76 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite

I would be interested in this (if my social anxiety doesn’t override that interest). I’ve tried to learn to knit every winter for the past three years, never finishing anything because it’s really hard for me to stick with anything I’m not immediately good at, but I do find it enjoyable. It’d be nice to have a low key option for hanging out and seeing what folks are working on.
posted by the thorn bushes have roses at 9:01 PM on October 14

I would love this. The last time I met other knitters was over two decades ago and I still have fond memories of quietly knitting and chatting.

I also need motivation to finish the toe of the second Skew sock so I can send them off and get started on a stash of baby clothes. Oh! Can we also do Christmas things?

In other words, yessssss please
posted by dorothyisunderwood at 9:41 PM on October 14

On the non-knitting end, early on in the stay-home times, us Mefites-in-Japan had a pretty regular zoom get together. It's good times, and I highly recommend it.
posted by Ghidorah at 10:08 PM on October 14

I’m not sure that the zoomininess of this would work for me, but it sounds like fun to try.
posted by SLC Mom at 10:20 PM on October 14

I would be interested in this!
posted by ellieBOA at 10:41 PM on October 14

I’m in. Also happy to attempt to teach anyone how to knit or crochet over zoom. It may not work but it’s worth a try!
posted by iamkimiam at 10:56 PM on October 14 [2 favorites]

Sure! I can host zooms through work for now, if folks would like.
posted by ChuraChura at 10:57 PM on October 14 [2 favorites]

My small craft project would be limited to giving myself a manicure in case anyone else is worried about crafting! (Hope that’s ok!)
posted by ellieBOA at 11:22 PM on October 14 [4 favorites]

I would be into this, I’d be doing pretty much every craft other than knitting, whoops.
posted by Mizu at 12:56 AM on October 15

Would be interested depending on timings. I am happy to teach knitting or crochet to anyone, and myself would be doing that or weaving while we are all together.
posted by Megami at 2:02 AM on October 15

A group of friends has a regular Monday night Stitch-n-Bitch session which used to be an in-person crafting hangout but has now moved virtual. It's a key element in folks staying caught up.
posted by seanmpuckett at 4:50 AM on October 15

I would be interested!
posted by brook horse at 5:17 AM on October 15

Yes! My job schedule is all over the place right now so I can't guarantee I'd be able to make it, but I love this idea and am very interested.
posted by Sparky Buttons at 5:36 AM on October 15 [1 favorite]

Depends on the timing but me and my neglected embroidery would pop in!
posted by Eyebrows McGee (staff) at 5:42 AM on October 15

I would be interested. I have been thinking of taking all the leftover yarn I have and attempting a sweater -- very low stakes because the colors will be awful and no one would want to wear it, but maybe I'll learn a little about making something that isn't a scarf or a dishtowel.
posted by JanetLand at 5:52 AM on October 15

Instead of a zoom call could it be something more... ambient? I am not up on the technologies available, but I’m imagining a chat room with opt in video call capabilities where folks can be hanging out any time? That would be a discord server, right? Could still have set times for people to show up.
posted by Mizu at 5:54 AM on October 15 [2 favorites]

I'm interested - I knit but haven't recently, so it might be me playing with clay or working on some other little art project
posted by brilliantine at 5:57 AM on October 15

I might be up for this! (with or without crochet hooks in hand)
posted by rmd1023 at 6:44 AM on October 15

Ooooh I would love this! Please yes.
posted by rue72 at 7:07 AM on October 15

I would love to knit with other MeFites!
posted by hapaxes.legomenon at 7:14 AM on October 15

You could also have scheduled craft time in chat. But, yes, this is a fine idea.
posted by theora55 at 7:38 AM on October 15

I might like this.
posted by dlugoczaj at 7:39 AM on October 15

I would definitely do this.
posted by gladly at 7:54 AM on October 15

I’m in! Have a bunch of knitting projects in varying stages, and I picked up latch hooking as a quarantine project.
posted by ActionPopulated at 8:05 AM on October 15

yay! would love to pop in and do whatever!
posted by mochapickle at 8:12 AM on October 15

I would also love this :)
posted by goodbyewaffles at 8:14 AM on October 15

I'm in. Chat or zoom, whatever people prefer.
posted by MichelleinMD at 8:45 AM on October 15

Sure! I can host zooms through work for now, if folks would like.
posted by ChuraChura

My partner's (turtlegirl) local knitting group has been meeting via zoom for a while. The most important thing for them was when the library got an account so they could have a space without a changing invite and password. Thanks, ChuraChura.
posted by terrapin at 8:50 AM on October 15

I'm in — I just started a new knitting project so this would be fun!
posted by blacktshirtandjeans at 8:55 AM on October 15

I would be interested in this! I am a knitter but am branching out into embroidery and macrame.
posted by Gray Duck at 9:40 AM on October 15

I am an interested knitter.
posted by jaruwaan at 9:47 AM on October 15

I enjoy groups that do this (you don't have to knit, it just means you're not required to stare into the camera the whole time; I got my desk cleaned up pretty well last time, and did my nails), the tricky part is that you need some kind of a private mechanism for signing up and getting a link so it doesn't get zoombombed.

Ideally you put together a group of people willing to be hosts and manage that private mechanism for signups/links. You'll likely end up planning multiple sessions that are amenable to various time zones, hosts take shifts or sessions.
posted by Lyn Never at 10:28 AM on October 15 [2 favorites]

I would totally do this.
posted by holborne at 11:09 AM on October 15

I would totally be in!
posted by deadtrouble at 11:15 AM on October 15

I would 100% enjoy showing off all these Baby Surprise Jackets over video. And knitting more with people.
posted by bilabial at 11:46 AM on October 15 [1 favorite]

Well I don’t know how to knit and I’m probably in the wrong time zone but I had a few mending meet ups with MeFites before I left California and it was really fun. So if the time was right I would totally do it and just put her with some thing because it’s pleasant not to have to stare into the camera constantly but simply listen and contribute commentary from time to time. Also, have seen pics of some of bilabial’s baby surprise jackets and they are amazeballs. So great!
posted by Bella Donna at 12:14 PM on October 15

I also have a commercial zoom account for work so would be willing to host on occasion as well.
posted by Bella Donna at 12:15 PM on October 15

I'm interested! I haven't knitted in decades, and I think I can only really remember the basic (stockinette?) stitch, but god knows there's a zillion YouTube tutorials out there. I'd been thinking about taking up knitting, now that we're heading into winter with no end in site to isolating, and it would be wonderful to have a chance to interact with other people!
posted by Kat Allison at 12:36 PM on October 15 [1 favorite]

As the winter holidays approach, I will have a bunch of bookbinding projects to crank thru. If the timing works, I might be able to join in too while I sew my books together!
posted by ikahime at 2:19 PM on October 15

I don't knit but I like to bake. If anyone wants to Zoom a bread or bakery hour, DM me.
posted by Stanczyk at 3:30 PM on October 15

Before I consider this some of the mifilawyers should resolve liability issue if someone like me pokes his eye out with one of those dangerous weapons....
posted by sammyo at 4:00 PM on October 15

I second the mention of Discord above. This would allow for people to participate just via chat if they preferred, and also easily break into smaller rooms (I know Zoom has breakout rooms but IIRC they require the organizer to shuffle people around rather than letting people enter whatever room they wish) since the amount of interest suggests one big room would be overwhelming. Discord has chat, voice, and video. It would also let people leave messages and updates on their work throughout the week even if they can't make the specific time. I'd be happy to help set it up if other people are interested in that.
posted by brook horse at 4:15 PM on October 15 [7 favorites]

I'd be interestested. I've got a half done embroidery project that needs finishing. Also coloring.
posted by kathrynm at 4:52 PM on October 15

Yes, please. I am a knitter but I am also about to embark on a new craft odyssey: needle felting.
posted by Biblio at 5:24 PM on October 15

I would be interested. I recently finished a project and am trying to finish another one.
posted by brookeb at 5:35 PM on October 15

I would absolutely do this! I have never used discord before but am happy to learn a new tool if that’s where this ends up.
posted by eirias at 3:29 AM on October 16

P.S. I only vaguely remember how to knit, as it’s been years, so I would welcome a reminder of how to cast on. Thanks, iamkimiam, for the offer of tutelage!
posted by eirias at 3:32 AM on October 16

Officially on maternity leave and the advantage of it being my second is that I feel like I could actually do some knitting while he is at the feed sleep repeat stage! Would love a reason to pick up my sock and Afghan again.

I am in the UK though, so some time zone considerations may be relevant.
posted by like_neon at 5:09 AM on October 16

I love this and think the discord server might be ideal. I'd love to learn to crochet but also just have company while I putter around sorting out my craft room. The nice thing about the discord server is that folks can log on anytime and just chill with whomever is there. My 13 yo has one with kids from all over the there is usually someone to talk to no matter when he logs in.
posted by victoriab at 6:57 AM on October 16 [1 favorite]

I’d tentatively be in, though with work and kids I don’t have oodles of free time. I do have a cardigan with half the stitches on the button band picked up , that would be nice to finish....
posted by Valancy Rachel at 7:11 AM on October 16

Here, I’ve made a discord server. I do not want to be the only or primary admin! If you want to schedule times for video calls or be active I would love for you to be proactive. Please don’t be shy about it. If you also want to do Zoom meetings we could announce the invites and times for them on the server. We can make lots of different channels but I’m keeping it very simple to start off with.
Metacrafts invite link
posted by Mizu at 7:22 AM on October 16 [5 favorites]

What days and times would people prefer? Please post your top 1-3 days/times and I'll create a poll with SurveyMonkey.

Also, I know many people who love Discord but I absolutely hate it, so if others would also prefer Zoom...we could have hangouts on both, it doesn't have to be one or the other.
posted by rue72 at 8:20 AM on October 16 [1 favorite]

Oh, and my preferred dates/times are Monday 9pm EST and Sunday 4pm EST.
posted by rue72 at 8:21 AM on October 16

I am a longtime MeFite who owns a yarn shop in Asheville, NC. We used to have a shop downtown but are online only these days due to the COVID. We have 3 weekly Zoom stitch groups, and I'd be happy to host a MeFi one if the times don't conflict. My mother in law has been fighting lung cancer since February, so we have been super locked down and I miss seeing people.

If you'd like to join our already-established groups, we're always welcoming, and we've had stitchers from three continents. We're very LGBTQ friendly and nerdy and we don't avoid politics (though we try not to make ourselves more depressed with extended rants).

If we do set up a MeFi Zoom, setting up some ground rules tends to be very helpful. It can be easy for some people to kind of monopolize a conversation without really meaning to. I have a lot of experience moderating stitch groups, but no experience moderating MeFites.

The latest Zoom version lets people self-select into breakout rooms, which means that if some people want to chat about US politics and others want to avoid it, that's easy to manage.
posted by rikschell at 10:17 AM on October 16 [6 favorites]

Mizu, I already had a Discord account, it turns out, but I've virtually never used it. My Mac isn't recognising the invite. Is there a Discord tag for the group I can use to access the group? Please PM me or, you know, ignore me if this is too much of a pain. :-)
posted by Bella Donna at 1:43 PM on October 16

Never mind, figured it out. Yay!
posted by Bella Donna at 1:47 PM on October 16

"I have a lot of experience moderating stitch groups, but no experience moderating MeFites."

On the whole, they're pretty great.
posted by Eyebrows McGee (staff) at 2:47 PM on October 16 [5 favorites]

I’m having shoulder surgery on Monday so no knitting for me but I will still be into this! I want to see bilabial’s Baby Surprise jackets and for one-handed projects I’m thinking watercolors? I have three little kits waiting for me to do them. I might even be able to do my nails, which is not something I would ordinarily do, but desperate times.
posted by HotToddy at 3:37 PM on October 16 [1 favorite]

If you have a generous definition of crafting that includes things like folding laundry, catching up on a journal, and staring into space, I would be down.
posted by medusa at 6:51 PM on October 16 [2 favorites]

M-F 8-10pm is a good time for me.
Weekend afternoons might work too.
posted by kathrynm at 7:29 PM on October 16

Hey, I'm hosting a little baking meetup tomorrow morning at 9 EST. If you want to join, message me an email address and I'll send you a zoom invite.
posted by Stanczyk at 7:51 PM on October 16

Into it.
posted by chesty_a_arthur at 8:40 PM on October 16

Yes, I'd love to do this!
posted by tumbling at 10:57 PM on October 16

Hey folks, I don't feel like posting separately about this but wanted to note the virtual walking meetup that is in progress at IRL. A hardy band of three of us are currently engaged. It is silly and fun. Feel free to check it out.
posted by Bella Donna at 3:37 AM on October 17 [2 favorites]

Kathrynm and I just finished our first Zoom baking hour this morning and it was fun. Talked about favorite kitchen tools, the power of bacon, and the use of chai in fall recipes. I made a loaf of sourdough, two loaves of raisin bread, and pizza dough for dinner tonight. Kathrynm made two dozen zucchini, bacon, chive, and cheddar muffins. I'll share pics when my stuff is actually finished.

We're going to do it again next Saturday morning at 9 EST so ping me if you want an invite.
posted by Stanczyk at 7:47 AM on October 17 [4 favorites]

I will be out of town next weekend but would welcome a baking (in my case, more of a cooking) date in the future, so I will ping you later, Stanczyk. Many thanks for the idea, can't wait!
posted by Bella Donna at 9:53 AM on October 17 [2 favorites]

Adding my name to the interest list! I am in a similar knitting group through another community and it’s nice! Socializing over zoom can be exhausting in its intensity of “being on”, but I’ve found that online craft sessions quickly find a rhythm where folks can mostly keep eyes on their projects and maintain a light discussion with natural silences... kind of like in any other knitting circle.
posted by shelbaroo at 2:45 PM on October 17

Here are the results.
posted by Stanczyk at 3:20 PM on October 17 [3 favorites]

mmmm Stanczyk! I'm coming to C-bus when this whole virus thing gets under control.

Here are my muffins. I actually made 23 and one went into my belly as lunch.
posted by kathrynm at 9:02 PM on October 17 [3 favorites]

I'm down.
posted by batbat at 8:12 PM on October 19

I'd be in, if it's at a time that I'm awake (in Sydney, so may not be possible).
posted by kjs4 at 9:50 PM on October 19

Does anyone on this thread have a Doodle account so they can run a quick poll for possible dates and times that work for the most number of people?

I would suggest having a second one scheduled for those of us over in Asia/Australasia!
posted by dorothyisunderwood at 10:17 PM on October 19

Folks who are part of the Discord (or would like to join the discord!) are welcome to come hang out and craft etc. in video/voice chat tonight - I'll be in there probably starting around 7 PM EST.
posted by ChuraChura at 11:24 AM on October 20 [2 favorites]

Kathrynm and I are going to do another Saturday Morning Baking Club tomorrow at 9 am EST. Memail me for a Zoom invite if you'd like to join us.
posted by Stanczyk at 11:59 AM on October 23

Okay, I just saw this hella late but will go try out the Discord. Even though I may not be able to do any group stuff until after mid-November.
posted by jenfullmoon at 2:37 PM on November 1

I'm late to this and not a frequent Mefi contributor, but I'm a new lurker in Discord, with cross-stitch and watercolors at the ready.
posted by MsMacbeth at 10:19 PM on November 2

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