Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Five reasons to join Twitter

I tend to resist doing too much of the social media thing (said Mary, a longtime blogger and active Raveler - but hey, I quit Facebook!) because as technology speeds up I find I am more and more drawn to low-tech.  See: exhibit A, spinning wheel, exhibit B, spindle, and so on.

However, I did bow to pressure from Karen last month and set up an account.  And boy am I glad I did.

Five Reasons why Knitters should Twitter

1. You'll find out about deals.

I already knew about Soak - there's a bottle front and centre on my laundry shelf and if its contents get low I start to get shaky - and I even knew about what a nice gift it makes when paired with something handknit, but it never occurred to me that it would make a good Christmas present.  Until Jacqueline tweeted a free shipping offer.  At which point it occurred to me very strongly, such that I bought a ton of Soak things to give away.  Yay!

Plus, if I hadn't done that, I wouldn't have found the one yarny present I myself received (by ordering it and then giving it to somebody else to wrap - somebody who also thought Zombie Barbeque was a perfect colour name: thank you, Lorna's Laces.)

p.s.: Heel is awesome foot cream, and the cucumber scent smells like Bermuda.  Which is a good thing in case you're not sure what I mean by that.

2. You'll know when your favourite yarns are in stock.

I had to stop renewing my membership in the Knitterly Things Vesper Sock Club because I had (and still have) an insane amount of that exact sock base in my stash.  I promised myself I wouldn't go back till I knit up the current stash, which is problematic because I am not also stopping myself from buying non-club skeins from the online shop.  In fact if it wasn't that Julia's stock sells out entirely within hours of being posted, aka Before I Can Get There, I would be in Big Trouble.

Still, it's tricky to buy the scant remaining Vesper even with the aid of e-mail notices that the shop has been stocked.  So I was thrilled recently to read a tweet from Julia to say she was about to stock the shop.   How awesome is that?  All I had to do was stalk the site and not even that very much, and I was able to score a skein of Rawhide.

We can discuss later whether I should be knitting this for a guy or not, bearing in mind that I wear a lot of black and really want this for myself.

(p.s., Twisted Fiber Art announces new colourways on Twitter before e-mail too.  Q: how much do I love Shenanigans?  A: a LOT.  and there is no question of knitting it for a guy - or anyway, not my guy friends - so, Guilt Free.)

3. You'll get recipe ideas.

Stephanie Pearl-McPhee tweeted the other day that she had just made cauliflower soup by roasting the florets with garlic cloves in olive oil, salt, and pepper, than pureeing half of it and throwing the lot into stock...

... and I will be buying an immersion blender this week.  I can't stop thinking about this soup.

(It occurred to me this morning that I would really enjoy having Stephanie Pearl-McPhee for a friend except that everybody I know who reads her blog including me gets into trouble because everything she talks about is something you feel  immediately you must try also, and the next thing you know you're spending yarn money on an immersion blender.  You know what I mean?  I would need some sort of protective shield from the inspiration.)

4. You find out about cool craft techniques.

I can't even remember now who tweeted what about which site, but I do know that somebody's comment this week led me through a maze of links to discover a tutorial for an amazing couching tip.  Seriously, I have hunted everywhere and can't find the link that was so eye-opening, but I can tell you the basics which are:

- write or trace or photocopy onto paper the letter you want to couch and cut away the excess, then pin it to what you want to embroider;

- swirl your yarn over the letter, then use couching stitch to fasten the key point in each curve;

- carefully tear away the paper;

- couch the rest of the letter.

And now I want to embroider some knitting... maybe the hat I'm working on, when it's finally done?

5. You will discover great websites.

People tweet all kinds of links they like, and I check them all out because you never know what you're going to find.  Now I have to ask myself: how did I get by without the crafty goodness of Whipup, Craft Passion, or How About Orange

I foresee a very productive year, even taking into account the loss of time I am now spending on reading my Twitter Feed.  (which isn't much, frankly.  there's so much gold in there it doesn't take long to mine enough to keep me happy.)

And that's five.  Got any other good reasons?

(oh, and if you go and you're looking for me, the handle I ended up with was @marykeenanknits.  apparently there are other Mary Keenans.  a lot of us in fact, and some of them got around to Twitter first.)

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