Obviously, knitting originated before the time we had the internet and computers. But just as knitwear styles have kept up with the latest trends, knitting has also kept up with the latest technologies and there are many digital tools for knitting or ones that can be used for knitting.
You know, as a millennial I need to bring a little bit of digital into every I do. So I wanted to share with you some of the online tools I use in partnership with my knitting.
I’m focusing here on the tools I use as a hobby knitter and not the tools I use on the business side of Knits of Steele. That will be a separate post, although I do touch on some of them here and there is overlap.
If you’re not already using Ravelry you are missing out!! This is the greatest online resource for knitters.
Ravelry is a really huge database of knitting patterns, and it’s also a great tool for connecting with your fellow knitters and planning and tracking your projects and your stash. There are so many features I’m sure I’m not even taking advantage of all of them.
How I use Ravelry
- To search for and purchase patterns
- Favourite patterns to keep track of things I’d like to knit when I need ideas (as if I’d ever run out)
- Queue up the patterns I’ve purchased in the order I want to knit them
- Track my WIPs and FOs and keep pattern notes, really helpful for socks and mittens so for the second one I can remember what I did
- Connect with other knitters through groups
- See projects for certain patterns or yarns the notes other knitters make are really helpful
- To sell patterns of course!
What’s great about Ravelry
- Totally free!!
- Biggest pattern database out there
- They stand against discrimination in our community and ensure a safe space
- And I don’t use this feature because I’m too unorganized, but you can track your stash and search for yarns
If you haven’t heard of Google I don’t know what to tell you! So I don’t think much intro is needed here.
If you haven’t heard of Google Drive it’s part of Google’s suite if free cloud based programs. If you have a Gmail address you have Google drive!
How I use Google Drive
- To store patterns I’m working on. It’s great because there’s no need to print and can access from all my devices if I need to check a stitch count quickly I just open it on my phone or I can read my pattern off my phone while I’m knitting on the go.
- To write my patterns and blog posts. I’m writing this post write now on Google docs on the subway and I’ll finish it up on my computer when I get home.
What’s great about Google Drive
- It’s free up to a certain amount of space (it’s tons of space) and if you’re using Google you already have it.
- You can access anywhere from any device, and there’s a mobile app.
- It’s cloud-based so no need to worry about losing your patterns and documents if your computer crashes.
Using Google drive has really simplified my knitting and has allowed me to take advantage of commute time to work on my patterns and blog.
Trello is a web-based project management app and the free version offers all the features you need to use it to organize your knitting. I was introduced to Trello at my old job where we used it as a team to manage our projects.
You can set up multiple boards, and within the boards you have lists and cards that you use to organize your tasks. You can set deadlines, add labels and to-do lists and lots of notes.
How I use Trello for my knitting
- Track my queue because I’m able to add additional information and notes that aren’t available in Ravelry. I can add notes for how much yarn I need for my size, links to the yarn and comparing prices. And I set up a checklist for each project.
- Track custom orders. During the holidays I take customs to make a little extra money for Christmas presents and Trello helps me track when orders are due and how much people owe me.
- I also use this for my blog content and patterns to (try to) stay on track and plan out a few months in advance.
- I use it on the go if a pattern idea strikes me I can jot it down in my pattern ideas list, and you can attach photos so I can attach a picture of my sketch and not worry about losing it!
Why Trello is great
- Another one that is cloud based and accessible from anywhere. There is a great mobile app.
I use Instagram for the “business side” of Knits of Steele, of course, to grow my audience and promote my blog and patterns. But Instagram is also a huge part of my hobby knitting.
Instagram is one of my fave digital tools for knitting, it’s where I got started with Knits of Steele way back in 2017. I know it’s weird to think of it as a “tool”, but I think it is.
How I use Instagram
- To connect with all of you!
- I love sharing what I’m working in and it’s the best place to see the hottest upcoming patterns and follow dyers and designers.
- I use my feed to show off pretty knitting and my stories to give more of a behind the scenes look at my day-to-day.
Why Instagram is great
- Free (are you noticing a trend?)
- Connect with other knitters and see beautiful knitting pictures but also behind the scenes.
- Use hashtags to follow the trends you like, there are tags for certain patterns, yarns and designers.
- Make sure you’re following #knitupjoy and #knitsofsteele to see my posts on Insta 🙂
Well there you have it. 4 of the digital tools I use to enhance my knitting experience as a hobby knitter. Stay tuned for more of how I use these tools and more on the business end of Knits of Steele.