Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Favorite Knitting Accessory

My SP10 hostess, Robyn, wants everyone to post on her favorite knitting accessory. The problem is, I don't really know if I have one.

Don't get me wrong - I LOVE gadgets. If there's a new stapler/hole punch/letter opener out there, I want it, especially if it's miniature. I can't wait for the TSA to relax, because not carrying a pocketknife makes me feel like I'm traveling naked. You should see my pen collection. I own a water purifier, although I can't imagine ever going hiking. And I read the Magellan's catalog with a feeling of desire that would equal any teenage boy's reaction to Playboy.

But when it comes to making things, it's different. Part of the satisfaction comes from using minimal's just me and the medium. I enjoy sewing with needle and thread. I don't use an embroidery hoop, a chart holder, or a magnifier - I like to grab my fabric and sit in the sun. Someday I will find The Perfect Knife, which will allow me to empty everything else from my kitchen drawers. Ok, I love my KitchenAid mixer, but power tools are different.

So I don't have a favorite knitting accessory. I keep a small tape measure and some stitch markers, and I'm always buying needles. I need to find a way to keep double-points together when I'm working. I owned a Chibi for 15 minutes, but Max got it and chewed up the case - and the needles. I'm sure I'd appreciate and enjoy more or better knitting gadgets, but there's nothing I long for.

If I have to pick a favorite, I offer this - my Stitch 'n' Bitch journal. I like to keep it handy. It's not perfect - there are too many pages for sweater designs, and not enough in the "Things I've Made" section. But it's still handy. I record important measurements, keep an ongoing project list in the "Notes" section, and use sticky notes to list yarn requirements for my wish list, since the "Things I Want To Make" section is too small. There's a handy gauge and needle template, and a nice pocket in the front to hold the aforementioned sticky notes.

I also use it as a charted pattern library. Turkish socks are one of my favorite things to knit, so there's no such thing as too many patterns. Each stitch repeat gets its own page, so I can pick out just what I need. Some are collected from other sources, and some are ones I've designed. If there were a way to discreetly carry graph paper and colored pencils, I'd doodle patterns all the time in class - now THAT may be an accessory I need!



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