Knitting supplies, knitting notions, world yarn domination toolkit… whatever you call your favorite knitting tools, we all love a good knitting notion. Although all you really need to knit is some string ( or grass depending on how desperate you are) and a stick of some sort.
Recently, I was stuck without my knitting, because of an impromptu vacation involving extreme lateness on my part. It was absolute torture… as I refreshed Ravelry again and again, all I could think about was knitting. So then, this happened:
I knit on a pencil, with some yarn I found that I had hand-spun when I was 11 or 12 years old. I was very off gauge and gave up after about 5 minutes. But, it was better than not knitting!
Of course, having more than string and sticks do make knitting a whole lot more fun.
Let’s start at the very beginning…a very good place to start (feel free to sing). There are some tools a knitter must have, whether you’re knitting a garter stitch scarf or a Shetland lace wedding ring shawl.
- A tape measure! Get lots of these. Put one in your bedroom, one in your basement, on in the attic (or just stuff it in your walls as insulation), one in your car, one in the backyard, one in your purse, and one in your backup purse… these guys have a way of always getting lost when you need one and showing up on your kitchen counter when you’ve spent 5 hours looking for one.
- Scissors, especially for devotees of 8 ply yarn, cotton, and/or acrylic. I love embroidery scissors- they are cute, usually airplane friendly, and convenient to always carry with you. If you didn’t know, those circular blades actually aren’t airplane friendly contrary to popular belief, but scissors with blades under 4″ are.
- Tapestry needles, even if you hate weaving in ends. They are useful for more than weaving in- they can be impromptu stitch holders, they are essential for creating after thought lifelines, and you can use them as cable needles, in a pinch. Bent tips are the best tips because they make picking up stitches as easy as sipping iced tea.
- A knit-check or gauge checker. These are great for checking gauge without going in a crooked line, as well as checking needle size if you can’t figure out the size of that mystery needle you bought ages ago.
- A pattern GPS is great for beginners and advanced knitters. Beginners can use it to prevent getting lost in a pattern, and it can also be used for keeping track of where you are in your chart.
- Stitch markers of all kinds- locking, split markers, bulb pins, end of round markers, and regular round ones. These are useful for tracking increases/decreases, borders, selvages… all sorts of things! I love a pretty stitch marker!
- Point protectors, or needles with built in point protectors. I hated picking up stitches in the bus after I carelessly threw my knitting into my purse. With point protectors, my stitches don’t drop! My latest new love has been my DPN holders, which are amazing for on the on sock knitting.
- Cable needles can be used for cabling as well as holding a couple of dropped stitches. Pretty self-explanatory.
- Dental floss is my new obsession! Creating lifelines is easy and fast with dental floss, and you can also use it as a stitch holder. I love it, and always have it in my knitting bag.
Extra Fun Tools!
Treat yourself to these tools on a bad day, ask for them for Christmas, or grab them next time you are in your LYS. They’re fun, and useful too.
- Progress trackers make knitting feel more productive. Plus, it prevents feeling like you’re knitting and knitting but you aren’t making any progress! They’re super cute, to boot.
- Portuguese knitting is now the ONLY way I knit, and having a pretty Portuguese knitting pin or knitting pendant is the perfect addition to your stash of knitting tools.
- Interchangeable needles are an amazing knitting investment. Besides sock needles in smaller sizes, they will basically be the only needles you will need to use! I love them.
- A knitting project bag makes knitting more fun and convenient. I love the field bag, but any knitting pouch will do!
- Skin balm is perfect for dry winter days. Dry hands mean your yarn won’t run smoothly, so pop a skin balm in your purse at all times.
- Knitters graph paper is great for shawl designers, color work designers, any designer… It’s essential for me, really, but optional for most non-designers.
These are my favorite knitting tools. Did I miss any? Let me know your favorite knitting tools in the comments below.