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Topic: What tools can't you live without?  (Read 9134 times)
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« on: December 04, 2005 11:43:14 PM »

ok so i just randomly today started to try knitting! yay! ok so anyways...i picked up some red heart and canon (sp?) simply soft yarn, and some 8 knitting needles...(dont mind me if i am down on the lingo!) i statred doing the slipnot and then i started knitting...i got kind of discouraged and stopped for a while...i wanna know if there are any other items i NEED to have for knitting...i am going to walmart tom so any info is appreciated! thx

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« Reply #1 on: December 05, 2005 08:53:16 AM »

Find a pattern you like and use what you have.  Learn how to do gauge, different stitches, casting on, binding off, increasing, decreasing.


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« Reply #2 on: December 05, 2005 09:30:16 AM »

scissors and a yarn needle for sewing the loose ends in when you're finished.  in the sewing section at wal-mart, they should have them with the rest of the needles.  Just look for a big metal or plastic needle with a big eye.  Yarn, needles to knit the yarn with (your 8's should be just fine for now, though you'll start looking at other sizes once you start worrying about this nasty, mean little thing called "gauge") scissors to cut the yarn with, and a needle to weave in your ends is all you need to get started, material-wise. oh, and hefty helpings of patience and moxie.  =]

good luck!

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« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2005 09:35:37 AM »

I love my row-counter, which is a little red box that you click on every time you knit a row.  It's not completely necessary, as you can always draw a little "slash" on a notepad to keep track of your rows.  I love the little click noise though.

Congratulations on becoming a knitter!  I just celebrated my knitting 1-year anniversary (by knitting, of course!).

« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2005 07:16:11 PM »

a soft tape measure - not a metal ruler, but the kind that you can roll up, and sometimes comes retractable (my preference).

« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2005 07:29:43 PM »

Two things:

1. A book with lots of pictures because knitting is way harder than it looks (for me anyway)

2. A basket. I just started last week and all of a sudden I have like 20 balls of yarn. It keeps all your supplies in one place and helps keep your yarn from snagging on your hockey sticks.
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« Reply #6 on: December 06, 2005 09:36:50 AM »

Also check out Knittinghelp.com for videos on how to do everything.  It's a great jump start!


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« Reply #7 on: December 06, 2005 11:17:26 AM »

Since you're going to Walmart you can get one of those "I Taught Myself Knitting" kits for like $9
It comes with
2 sets of needles
Tapestry needles to weave in ends with
Row counter
Point protectors
Gauge ruler
Sitch Holder
Cable needles
Stitch Markers
and a book to teach you how to knit

All in all its not a bad kit and cheaper than if you bought all the things seperate. Just starting out though all you really need is needles, yarn, scissors, and a tapestry needle.

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« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2005 04:10:37 PM »

I'm brand new to knitting, and I'm asking for knitting stuff for Christmas.  I'm tough to buy for, and this year I think my husband is pretty releived that I'm asking for something even if it means going to a craft store (normally I say I'm not sure...a pain, I know).  I have a set of interchangeable round needles, some stitch markers, a few straight needles, stitch holders, a few cable needles, and a ton of yarn (I never have enough...but there's no way he'll get me any more, and I can't ask him with a straight face).  My mom is making me a knitting bag, and a needle case. I have her on the lookout for cool pattern books (she loves the thrift stores).   I also have an Ultimate Sweater Machine, felting needles, yarn swift, and winder.

What should I ask him for?  What tools do you have that you can't live without?  What would be good to get?  I'm thinking of an assortment of needles and some books, but what do you have that you like?  What are your favorite books?

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« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2005 04:47:48 PM »

I wouldn't even know what to suggest. Sounds like you have some pretty cool toys already. I just have the basics.

set of interchangeable round needles, some stitch markers, a few straight needles, stitch holders, a few cable needles, and a ton of yarn...  My mom is making me a knitting bag, and a needle case... I also have an Ultimate Sweater Machine, felting needles, yarn swift, and winder.
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« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2005 04:56:44 PM »

- My plastic yarn needles.
- My 40cm 5mm circular needles
- My 5.5mm, 6mm, 6.5 straight bamboo needles
- My tote bag.


I use bits of paper as stitch markers (aren't I naughty) and I haven't even considered the possibility of buying a knitting machine yet!

Sounds like you have enough to be brand new right through to advanced at knitting!!
« Last Edit: December 07, 2005 04:59:40 PM by fluffyhelen » THIS ROCKS   Logged
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« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2005 05:24:58 PM »

how about a knitting gauge - the kind with rulers on two sides and an L shaped hole for calculating gauge, and holes with all the needle sizes? 

If it's for a gift, I'd ask for something slightly silly and extravagant - like a pair of tempered glass knitting needles in a size you'd use.
« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2005 05:39:33 PM »

Not knitting related, but I would love to have an electril grill/screwdriver  Cheesy

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« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2005 07:05:06 PM »

How about double pointed needles?  You've got interchangable circulars, you said (g0g0g0 Denise Interchangables!), but eventually you need some DPNS for hats, socks, sleeves, and other whatnots with small diameters.

I love my Stitch n' Bitch books by Debbie Stoller, which have a great assortment of beginner to intermediate projects that are easily modified to make them your own.  Maybe a subscription to a knitting magazine...does Interweave Knits do subscriptions?

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« Reply #14 on: December 07, 2005 10:11:25 PM »

Wow - you already have a lot of cool toys!  I have just the absolute bare bones...that said, one of those needle size/gauge squares is really handy.

Damn.  I live for the day I purchase a swift Smiley

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« Reply #15 on: December 07, 2005 10:15:20 PM »

ahh, a swift. Me too.
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« Reply #16 on: December 08, 2005 04:24:43 AM »

Thanks for the great ideas.  I think we're making some needles this weekend, and the stitch gauge would be really cool.  The swift is something my husband made for me last year.  He based it on something his mother had back in Finland and it works really well.  There's a pic of it here


They're super easy to make...the cord is a piece of jumprope!  I've also seen really cool ones made out of legos, and kinex toys. 

Our local AC Moore had the knitting machines on sale, and then I used a 50% off coupon so it set me back about $75.00.  I'm not a big fan of it...it's tedious, and gets boring after a while.  It's also very intimidating to have 100 needles staring at you.  That's why I finally taught myself to knit.  Even at my super-pokey beginner speed I can do some things faster by hand...but it's great if you want to make a bunch of scarves for gifts. 

Thanks again for all of your suggestions! 


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« Reply #17 on: December 08, 2005 05:45:44 AM »

It is or isn't knitting related, but I love my leatherman micra. Mine is kept in my crochet bag. It has a scissors along with a bunch of other fun tools. It folds up really small too. And they come in fun colors. Here's a link to a picture, just so you know what I'm talking about http://www.4bobandbob.com/pages/43.html

Those big books with TONS of different stitches are great, you can figure out how to make all different things in all different patterns once you know different stitches.

Some great lotion for your hands. Some yarns make my hands so dry (cottons especially)

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« Reply #18 on: December 08, 2005 11:28:08 AM »

Since your hubby already sounds pretty handy, why not ask for a set of shelves to store all your goodies... like a set they have at the yarn stores to show it off? A bookcase with adjustable shelves for your books and patterns and such. Plastic storage bins: a variety of sizes. I use large ones to store yarn and large WIPS, medium sized ones for storing most WIPs, small ones for holding gadgets or small projects.

I also have THREE large fishing tackle boxes that I can't live without. I was very picky about the size of them since I have a large stash of needles and hooks and such. One very large one is for crocheting, and it is large enough that my afghan and double-ended hooks can fit in the bottom, and all my hooks and gadgets fit in the sectioned levels above. The same goes for my knitting box. It can fit my 14" straights in the bottom as well, and all my cable needles, stitch holders and such fit in the sections. My smaller one is for my tatting. I use the bottom of that one to store tatting thread {I don't have much that's *just* for tatting since I crochet with thread as small as size 50!}, with the sections to hold my shuttles and needles and such.

Just my 2 {CAN that is!},

May all your projects be frog-less, and all your patterns error-free!

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« Reply #19 on: December 08, 2005 03:26:29 PM »

My favorite gadget is my tape measure, believe it or not. I'd love a super-fancy one, like this: http://www.knitpicks.com/tools/tools_display.aspx?itemid=80164

I also cannot live without those thingies you put on the end of your needles to keep your stitches from coming off, when you're not knitting. Oh, and a nice, fancy pair of little scissors to fit in your knitting pouch.


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« Reply #20 on: December 08, 2005 04:31:47 PM »

You could always ask for things like ribbon, beads, buttons, press-studs and other assorted niceities which you find yourself having to buy when you start knitting larger objects.

I'm gradually accumulating a bag full of "nice buttons" because my mum keeps buying them for me.  Smiley
« Reply #21 on: December 08, 2005 05:47:50 PM »

One of my favorite gadgets is coiless safety pins.  They come in 2 sizes and the only places I have ever seen them is in yarn shops.  I use them as stitch markers and tiny stitch holders.  They're also great when you're rescuing a dropped stitch and you're having trouble keeping track of it.  I also like to use them to keep track of my progress when I'm sick to death of working on something but I need to finish it anyway.  It's encouraging to realize that I'm getting closer to finishing  those epic baby blankets!
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« Reply #22 on: December 10, 2005 08:08:11 AM »

A few years ago for my birthday, my mum made me a long skinny drawstring bag  to keep knitting needles in, and filled it with gadgety things:
- things to go over needle ends to keep stitches on the needle when you're not knitting
- row counter
- rust-proof knitter's pins (for blocking, etc.)
- double-ended stitch holders (so you can remove stitches from either end)
- yarn needles
- gauge measuring thingy
- needle diameter gauge
- packs of special yarn detergent

All stuff that I use a lot, but probably wouldn't have bought for myself. It was a great gift!

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« Reply #23 on: December 14, 2005 08:06:44 PM »

The best investment I ever made was the Denise Interchangeable needle kit.  I got it for $47.95 and I use it exclusively.  I do have bamboo, metal, plastic, and other wooden needles, but I much prefer the Denise set.  I just wish I bought that set earlier.

« Reply #24 on: December 15, 2005 02:08:36 AM »

When I'm trying to conserve on space (small project, small bag) I love my cute Clover accessories.  I gathered it all from using craft store coupons, and it was worth the time:

Stitch holders that come in their own pouches
Point Protectors (in an Altoid gum tin)
Chibi needle Case
Yarn Cutter Pendant
Ergonomic crochet hook

I also have a retractable tape measure from Joann.  It all goes into a small felted Buttonhole bag I made from the Mason-Dixon Knitting pattern along with the yarn, work in progress and pattern.  It's a small bag, but I'm still amazed at how bottomless it is.  The bag was my second experiment in felting, and another knitting tool I couldn't live without, now that I think about it Smiley  Gotta have a good knitting bag.

I could seriously use a ball winder, though.  I think that would be incredibly handy, since most of the fiber I've been buying lately has been in hanks or skeins that get really tangled in the middle.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2005 02:13:40 AM by mizuiro » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #25 on: February 01, 2007 10:03:09 PM »

Something my aunt made for my mom several decades ago was a quilted hook holder and a quilted knitting needle holder.  Basically the inside had a flap go halfway up with vertical stitching to keep the needles/hooks seperated and organized.  The back portion was much taller than the needles so it flips over the top.  Then the holder is rolled left to right and there's ribbons sewn on one end to tie the holder closed.  If I see one of them this weekend I will take a pic to post.

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