I recently got my Ravelry queue under control and now use it to keep track of projects I could begin anytime I want because I have everything I need. I haven’t quite gotten to the point where every bit of yarn in my Ravelry stash is assigned to a queued project (or an actual Ravelry project) but I’m getting close. With that goal in mind, I still want to keep track of things that I want to make eventually, so my next task is to clean up my Ravelry favorites.
On Ravelry, you can favorite designers, patterns, projects, and yarn. You can also create bundles of these. As I’m browsing around Ravelry, I click the little heart icon to favorite anything that I think I might be interested in making. For big future projects that I’m pretty serious about, I create a bundle. For some projects, particularly CAL blankets, this is especially useful because the individual squares of the blanket may be published as separate patterns and this is one way to collect them all together and to put them in the right order. With a bundle, I can also add the yarn that I plan to buy, as well as links to particularly good examples of other people’s projects with notes about what I like about them (colorway, layout, etc.) I can even set the cover picture of the bundle to be my favorite example from the pattern or a project for added inspiration.
You can do advanced search of Patterns in your Favorites by so many things (Category, Yarn Weight, Difficulty, etc.) that I don’t even bother with tags.
I’ve also decided to leave some things in my favorites even after I’ve put them on my queue or actually started the project. The bundles may have useful extra information, or I may decide I’m likely to make more of this pattern in the future.
I had been using the favorite heart essentially like the Facebook “Like” button, but doing so left my favorites list cluttered with things that are nice but that aren’t something I’m really interested in revisiting. I’ve been gradually clearing the list and now it is much more useful — it motivates me to finish up WIPs and get things off my queue so I can dig into these lovelies. It also gives me a place to plan thoughtfully about big projects since the planning is a big part of the fun.
And my last note on favorites is that I am trying to leave a comment for the person who made the project when I add it to my favorites to tell them what I particularly liked about what they made. Especially when the project is recently finished or not already overwhelmed with praise, I like to just leave a short note because I know it makes me feel good when other people appreciate my work.