View Full Version : What are your favorite knitting accessories?

11-07-2004, 10:56 PM
I have a few...

11-07-2004, 11:40 PM
Well I don't have any pictures at the moment, but I like my starter set from Boye. It's really all I have. That and some other Boye DPNs. I REALLY want a set like yours but they are expensive. I know they are worth it. but without a job, it's near impossible to get one!

11-08-2004, 01:56 AM
I just saw someone selling a new set of Boye's on eBay, for $45- ("Buy it Now" price). Search for "Boye interchangeable".

Since you get 9 pairs of circular needles, of any cable length, it really saves you big from buying individual needles, if you knit a lot. It's an investment, but you'll never have to buy needles again! I think the new set has even more needle sizes than my old set.

11-08-2004, 01:58 AM
You don't have to post pictures, it's okay! I'm just a web geek, what can I say....

11-10-2004, 06:22 PM
The counter is my favorite accessory too! Although, I haven't seen ones with a "loop thingy" until today. :)

I have three counters and I intend to buy more. Actually, I need to buy at least one more because I've found an alternative use for one of my counters. One mile has a lot of laps and I don't have a lot of memory, so one of my counters has been adopted as my lap swimming counter too. :oops: tee-hee ...

Other than the counter, I have to mention my multi functional ruler that was in the Boye Starter kit I purchased. It's a six inch ruler with a guage ruler built in and needle sizer. I always mis-measure with a regular ruler; but with this Boye ruler, all you have to do is put the stitches (or rows) in the open space and TADA!!

Here's a picture the ruler:
Happy Knitting

11-12-2004, 02:16 PM
Very cool set! My sister was describing it to me yesterday so I had to come and check it out!

The bead row counter bracelet seems very cool as well. It would double as a Weight Watchers point counter bracelet for me! :)

11-13-2004, 12:08 AM
I also use that bead counter to count sets of things like decreases. For instance, if a pattern says: decrease like so, every 6 rounds, 5 times. I will use the small beads to count each of those six rows, and when I've done it once, I count a big bead. Then, start over with the small beads counting 6 rows, and place a second big bead. When there are 5 big beads, I know I'm done with that set of instructions.

I love my old Boye set, but I'm starting to hanker for the newer set. I just learned about "Magic Loop" knitting (a method of knitting socks and other small things, with one circular needle). I think the new Boye set might have a small enough cable for this. Does anyone have any recommendations? The cable needs to be able to fold virtually in half, and the folded end pulled out from between two stitches, without stretching them horribly. (If you don't know what I'm talking about, there's more info on Magic Loop knitting here (http://www.az.com/~andrade/knit/mloop.html).)

I suppose I should see if I like this technique first, before buying a whole new set of interchangeables! ...But the new Boye set also has a much smaller range of needles (more needles total?) than the old set I have. Good for those small items like socks. I wish I knew a store that stocked all the new kinds of interchangeables, so I could compare them all in person!


11-14-2004, 03:58 PM
I just discovered this cool yarn holder. It's a sterling silver bracelet that allows the yarn to dangle from your wrist. You're supposed to put the holder through the center of the ball of yarn, and then pull the yarn from the outside of the ball. This works pretty well, but the yarn sometimes gets tangled. I prefer, on the larger balls of yarn, to scewer the outer edge of the ball. Then I can pull the yarn from the center.

In any case, it's a great toy for holding the yarn while standing or walking.

Another method I use is to just tuck the yarn under my arm, and pull from the center of the ball. Or, if I'm carrying my knitting bag anyway, to just keep the yarn in the bag. So, this toy isn't really necessary, but it's fun.

This one I got is called the "Knitty Walker." I bought it for $18 at Northampton Wools, in Northampton, MA. They do mail order. Their number is (413) 586-4331. Shipping is $4.95.

11-15-2004, 01:51 PM
I feel like the earth is spinning out of control if I do not have my gauge stich counter thingy. Ya know that rectangular metal thing with a little corner cut out and had holes diagonally cut out to measure your needle size. Love that thing.

11-17-2004, 12:12 AM
I got these woven labels from NameMaker.com (http://www.namemaker.com/). This is their actual size. The first one was a label that I could put four lines of any text I wanted, so I included washing instructions for the wool items I make. I love these labels! This company had lots of good ones to choose from!

11-20-2004, 09:39 PM
i guess along the same lines as that very cool yarn holder bracelet i love to use old fishing baskets for portable knitting. the lid keeps the yarn nice and contained and when i'm using a couple of colors i put each yarn coming out of the corners of the basket and it keeps them the perfect distance from me and from each other -no tangles!

11-21-2004, 06:42 PM
Being a new knitter, I had a couple of aluminum needles to get me started, but I read someplace that wood needles are easier on your hands, so when I got to the point where I'm knitting every spare second including every public place I go, I started wanting some!

I ordered some bamboo, but they weren't Clover (which I discovered are better) but I don't like the way the yarn slides (or doesn't) over them. They are also very round on the end, so they don't slide into the stitch well.

Unfortunately, I discovered Lantern Moon Rosewood (http://www.lanternmoon.com/fourwoodsknitting.asp). They're expensive, but so fabulous! I have one pair and am thinking about buying a new pair everytime I start something that needs a different needle size. Or maybe I'll talk hubby into a good set of them (doesn't anyone sell them in sets) for Christmas!

11-21-2004, 08:52 PM
Those Rosewood needles are beautiful. I'm curious to try them now that you say the knitting slides better on them than Bamboo. I know what you mean about Bamboo not sliding as well as metal needles. I like using wood and Bamboo as DPN's, because there aren't so many stitches on the needle, so they slide well enough. And the needles rarely fall out of the work, unlike aluminum needles, which are such a pain when you get to just a few stitches on the needle-- they just love to fall out!

I'm curious about wood being easier on the hands. In what way exactly? The only thing I can think of is that metal needles get cold if you're knitting outside (or in a cold house!). Otherwise, it seems that aluminum needles would be less stressfull on the hands, being so much smoother to knit with. ?


11-22-2004, 10:29 AM
Maybe it is just that the aluminum gets colder, but they feel harder on my hands, too. The wood, either bamboo or rosewood, doesn't make my fingers feel like they are gripping such a hard surface.

It really could be the cold, now that you mention it. We live in an old house and it tends to be just a little cooler than you want it, most of the time!

11-23-2004, 10:39 PM
Bamboos are supposed to be much better for people with atheritis (sorry if the spelling's out) as they're so much warmer to hold.

I've personally found that using aluminium needles of 'rough' yarn (boucle, untreated wool, etc) and bamboo for 'slippery' yarns (mercinisert cotton, silk etc) works well. As most craftsman will agree - the right tool for the right job is half the work done ;-)


11-24-2004, 10:02 PM
Hi All

If anyone is interested in the Boye set, I found a site that has a pretty reasonable price, and as far as I can tell, its the cheapest on the web, $47.25. It's at www.knitting-warehouse.com - I've had one experience with their shipping and it was pretty fast.


11-24-2004, 10:24 PM
Welcome, Rick!

Great price! Thanks!


12-02-2004, 12:45 AM
...I'm curious about wood being easier on the hands. In what way exactly? The only thing I can think of is that metal needles get cold if you're knitting outside (or in a cold house!). Otherwise, it seems that aluminum needles would be less stressfull on the hands, being so much smoother to knit with. ?


I have a size 3 ring size and I'm in my mid 30's so if you can imagine how small my hands are... :shock: ... I also had two fingers broken back in high school on one hand and the other hand got shut in a car door in college (can you tell I don't have a lot of luck? :evil: ) --- so any manual activity can create a challenge, especially when the weather changes. I started with size 11 aluminum needles when I was nine, knitted a potholder, then did not pick up needles again til about 6 months ago, when I went to knit an eyelash yarn scarf in garter stitch on size 13 needles. HAD A BLAST - but my hands were so achy after about 30 minutes.... I knitted this furry thing for 3 days on a trip to Canada and back (about 9 hours each way, plus 2 days actually in country) and had to keep flexing my fingers or take Tylenol. I was in love with knitting again, but since I didn't know any other needle, I just kept up with my 13's and then purchased a few size 7, 8 & 9 Boye SPN and 2 Boye circular needle sets about 3 months ago, plus a gigunda set of plastic sz 17 and 19 forextra chunky knitting. Still had hand fatigue, but kept on. Then my husband bought me the Klutz Knitting Kit (go to http://klutz.com/catalog/product.php?itemNo=2420&cat=5 --- you will love this set!) which had a small set of size 8 bamboo needles. I knitted a small coin purse and was HOOKED!! Oh boy, these needles ROCKED --- so light and comfortable... I was addicted. I purchased 6 sets of CLover needles (SPN & circular) and gave most of my aluminum ones to other newbie knitters. I think I have 2 sets left, but they are holding unfinished products for now - and will always go with the CLover bamboo. A very nice lady @ a rural yarn shop in WV tried to sell me on Addi Turbos (which are very nice too) but I am so used to the Clover without the hand fatigue & aches, and that annoying metal click & scrape noise is gone now too.

Funny story b4 the Clover needles: Recently I had to go to court as a witness for a friend's MVA case and brought a project with me on the Boye metal circular needles. But when I went thru the metal detector, the officers x-rayed my briefcase and saw coiled somethings that set the alarm off and they automatically thought it was a bomb or something! Needless to say I was 2 steps from getting cuffed & beat down b4 they dumped my case and saw a pile of orange fuzzy yarn and my needles. So that's another reason for non-metal needles! :D

My next project is to make a few sets of SPN out dowels, but I'm verrrrrry happy with my CLover sets.

12-02-2004, 11:42 AM
Welcome, Roxy!

Wow, your story sounds like a true testament to wood needles!

This may sound off topic, but it's not.... My dog broke her left femur when she was a puppy, and it's always bothered her. She'll start limping now and then. When she does, I give her cod liver oil. She stops limping within a week or two of starting on the cod liver. It works like clockwork. I don't know all of the ways it works, but I know it is anti-inflamitory. Any "fish oil" supplement works well. Trader Joes makes a very high quality one.

Just thought I'd mention it, since you might try it for your hands!

Wow, size 3 ring. You must have tiny hands indeed!
Happy Knitting!

12-02-2004, 12:41 PM
A little note about joint pain...glucousamine works wonders for both people and dogs!

We had a 100 lbs dog who was having problems with arthritis. He would whine and cry when we went downstairs because he couldn't manage the steep stairs in the house, so I had to take him outside and around to the back entrance, then back around to the front entrance when we were going back upstairs. We started feeding him a dog food that included glucousamine and within DAYS he was leaping around and jumping and running up and down the stairs. It was amazing!

12-02-2004, 02:52 PM
Thanks for the suggestions - I will try the cod liver oil & glucosamine - can't hurt, right? Anything to make my knitting time more enjoyable :D

Back to accessories - I saw the niftiest gadget @ that yarn shop in WV - Sandy, the owner, had a cool wooden spindle thing that held yarn off her pinky as she knitted. She was working on a childs' color block poncho while we chatted, and I saw this contraption (similar to the yarn bracelet, but lighter - ?) and she said she was thinking of selling them if it proved successful for her. It looked like a 6-in dowel with two small wooden rings and a loop... I think you push a ball of yarn on the dowel between the rings and hang the loop off your finger... hard to explain, but I hope she does decide to sell them :) because she was swooping through her project like it was nothing and the yarn was tangle-free. Her shop cat, Calamity Jane was keeping her own yarn pile tidy LOL

(Yarn & Company, Elkins, WV 304-636-6031)

Catch you guys later,
Anne aka Roxy

PS - Come to think of it, my own cat, Angel might be considered my favorite accessory, since she loves to sleep in my yarn basket.

12-03-2004, 08:04 PM

That headlamp pic that you posted looks a lot more comfortable than my Black&Decker Snakelight. My husband thinks I am nuts when I wear the snakelight around my neck - it actually comes in quite handy when grilling outside after dark and when our electricity was out for a week last summer. Not being able to read in bed was torture so I wrapped the snakelight around my head. Let me tell you that snakelight - while quite handy, weighs a ton when it is wrapped turban style around your head. And who knew, they actually make a product that is supposed to be worn on your head - and I bet the light is much brighter too.


I plan to add that headlamp to my Christmas List!!

12-04-2004, 02:35 AM
Yeah, the headlamp is GREAT. Other than my needles, it's my favorite accessory! I don't know what I'd do without it!

Yes it's very comfy, and has a bright (but not too bright for the car) light. It has three levels of brightness, and a strobe light setting. I use the lowest setting when reading from a pattern that has very bright white pages, because the glare on the bright setting is too bright for my husband while driving.

We haven't had to use it for this, but I've always thought it would be great to have if we broke down at night. My husband could wear it on his head while looking under the hood. And if we had to walk, we could turn it around to the back of the head, and put it on the strobe setting for safety.

Plus, it's great for blackouts, as you say, and for camping and night-walks, etc! ...I use it constantly!

01-18-2005, 02:12 PM
Amy, you're a lifesaver! I'm off to REI to get that headlamp thing! I've been moving a floor lamp from one room to another everytime I knit in the family room! I can't wait to demo it for my husband!

01-18-2005, 07:12 PM
I got the Boye interchangeables for Christmas (NeedleMaster) and they're wonderful. However, the first time I used the longest cable, the end of it where it screws into the needle point actually broke off inside the needle point. Ack! I managed to get the broken end out of there and the needle point is okay, but the cable itself is shot.
I called Wrights and they told me to send it back with a note and they will send me a new one. I'll let you know what comes of it.
They told me that sometimes happens; one will be defective. So just be aware that this can happen.

01-18-2005, 08:26 PM
I liked the idea of the headlamp, too, so I went to Wal-mart and bought one that is on a long, adjustable cord. It also swivels, so I just drape it around my neck and point it toward my knitting.

My husband is so glad that I've stopped turning the light on in the car!

01-19-2005, 03:27 AM
I am so glad I found a few others who like their Boye Interchangeable Needlemaster sets. As a poor college student, this has been a life-saver (well, knitting-saver). I got mine at the Michael's store (NAYY) and used a 50% off promotional coupon they had in their weekly ad. So, I spent a little under $40 for the set with tax (regularly priced around $70). A good investment, I thought.

Casey :D

01-19-2005, 03:00 PM
Welcome knittergirl! Love your cute avatar! :) What a great deal on your interchangeables! I love mine too. I used an old Boye set for years, and just got the new Boye set which I like better. It's got more needle sizes (13 sizes!!) and that great, compact carrying case. Love it!

Kathy, that's clever that you found a headlamp at Wal-Mart. I bet it was much more affordable than mine. Is it an LCD light? (Where the batteries last forever?) Let us know how you like it!


01-19-2005, 10:46 PM
About the fish oil pills, they work great. If I don't take it for a few days my knees hurt terribly. Anyway, this may sound funny, but my favorite accessory at this point are stitch markers. I had never seen them before my grandma came to visit. They make life so much easier.

01-19-2005, 11:04 PM
About the fish oil pills, they work great. If I don't take it for a few days my knees hurt terribly. Anyway, this may sound funny, but my favorite accessory at this point are stitch markers. I had never seen them before my grandma came to visit. They make life so much easier.

Glucosamine & fish oil have been helping, yes :)

As for stitch markers, I've made a pile of them --- handmade, beaded & very pretty.... and CHEAP!

Go to this link for simple DIY instructions:

Glampyre.com DIY Beaded Stitch markers (http://glampyreknits.tripod.com/glampyrephotos/id35.html)

...Or you can buy a value pack of earring wire hoops and bead them with seed & rocaille glass beads and a pair of needlenose pliers.

...Or you can go to Pier 1 and buy those cute little sets of wineglass charms (& use them for stitch markers, except for the one that's on your wineglass currently in use while you knit LOL) when they have those awesome sales...

...I also made a pretty beaded stitch/row counter bracelet last night out of some silver jewelry toggle findings, glass beads and filament wire. (and saved a ton of $ --- woolshack.com sells a beaded counter bracelet for $29USD :shock: --- I made mine for less than $4 worth of materials I had in my craftbox) I'll take some pics soon, when I get my digi-camera working again...

01-25-2005, 03:08 PM
If you read my post above, you'll know about my mishap with my Boye NeedleMaster cable breaking.
Last Monday I sent it back to Wright's with a note, and in my mail today (one week and one day later!) was the replacement cable they sent back to me.
Excellent customer service! :D

01-26-2005, 11:17 PM
Really. (see subject title)

There is a perfect material called Homasote that you can get - not @ Home Depot, unless they are a specified dealer but you can go to this link:


It is awesome. You can tack pretty much anything to it and it STAYS put, yet it's lightweight and environmentally sound... Martha Stewart swears by it as a blocking board and creating her ribbon memo boards.

For more info, click here:


01-27-2005, 01:26 AM
Roxy, those beaded stitch markers are beautiful. Memory wire, eh? I like the idea of the wine-glass type, because I like a very thin stitch-marker. The dangling bead would be a nice touch.

Also, that homasote stuff sounds great. Made from cellulose, eh? You've got my environmentalist-attention! I wonder if you can use it as a base for flower arangements. I don't do those often, but I have a project in mind. I don't know if those green foamy blocks usually used for basket-type arrangements are environmentally friendly or not (any idea?). That stuff sounds like it would be handy for a ton of things. ...Blocking! Great idea!!

Yvonne, that's nice to know about Boye's customer service! I love a company like that. :)


01-27-2005, 09:14 AM
Well, I bought the Denise interchangeables. When they arrived, I was shocked at how large the cable was. And as far as the magic looping stuff - I really have my doubts you could do that with them. It is flexible, but the cable itself I think is about the size of a US 5! But have been working with them and it seems okay. Also, I didn't really realize they were plastic needles before I bought them. Again, they're okay. But I did go out and buy the Boye interchangeables too! So now I've got more needles than I know what to do with! Haven't used the Boye yet, but I'm sure I'm going to love them - they look normal at least. I'll probably try to sell the Denise ones. I also like the fact that Boye goes down to 2's and Denise only goes to 5. I need 4's a lot.


01-27-2005, 10:33 AM
I see there haven't been any postings here for a bit so I hope I'm not too late.. but Amy where did you get your head lamp? I love that idea esp since I've been keeping the light on in the car at night and even that's not bright enough.

What's REI? Thanks..... Vic

01-27-2005, 10:34 AM
Oops I'm out of it, I was looking at dates to the left thinking they were the 'post' dates. Got it....

01-27-2005, 10:36 AM
Also, (forgot to post this) My fingers have been getting worse, just like my mum's did... with good ol' arthritis and I have been wondering what I should begin doing besides cutting back on salt. I really appreciate hearing about the fish oil and other stuff and will try it. Wonder if that's why I have cravings for smoked salmon and whitefish and fishy oily stuff... ciao! Time for Pilates class even though I'd rather knit....

01-27-2005, 01:28 PM
OMG, another Pilates person!!! I LOVE Pilates!!! My hubby bought me the Winsor Pilates set for Christmas. I actually just started, so no results yet except some mild muscle burn the next day after a 20 min workout session. :roll: They sent a record sheet where I can write down all of my body measurements and I'm going to use it to see what kind of differences I obtain. Oh, and they also sent a 10 day recipe booklet with very delicious recipes that even my son likes to eat. :shock: How long have you been doing Pilates Victoise?

01-27-2005, 03:58 PM
Whoops, we've really ventured far off the original topic! Well, anyway, Pilates is fantastic although, like all exercise you can get tired of it after a while. But when I miss a week or 2 I really notice a difference: sore neck muscles again, lower back not being supported well, even your arms feel better from all the rotation.

Windsor Pilates is my teacher's arch enemy! She got mad cause this woman got famous etc. I guess they knew each other. I've been doing Pilates for almost 2 years and it is great. I will warn you, the first month is difficult but just don't do really strenuous exercies, work into them gently and your strength will build. Also your flexibility. It's definitely worth it. I lost 26 pounds! yikes by combining the gymwith Suzanne Somer's book on low carb dieting. I've since gone back to pasta sometimes & occasional bread (but not much sugar at all) but I've gained about 5 pounds back over Christmas & have to get that off now. Her book is great btw, Eat Cheat & Melt the Fat Away....
Enjoy your Pilates! It's great.

P.S. I'm still trying to think what my favorite knitting items are... but now I'm determined to get that lamp and the bracelet counter...
The yarn hanging from the wrist, that is so funny, how neat!

01-27-2005, 04:04 PM
Just found the website for the Princeton head lamp. $27.95.
That's not too bad!

01-28-2005, 04:05 PM
Victoise, that's what I paid for it too, not including shipping. A bit pricey, but I love that it's LCD, so the batteries last a long, long time. It's also comfortable to wear on your head, or around your neck, or just carry.

Good luck trying the fish oil. I don't know if I mentioned this already, but Trader Joes carries very high-quality fish oil in capsules, for the best price around. You can get cheapo stuff, but there can be heavy metals and toxins in it. I don't remember how you tell the difference between good and bad stuff, but I did research it at one point, and know that Trader Joes carries very high quality stuff, and you can't beat the price.

Since we're off topic.... and I just feel like sharing....
I'm sad today, because in a couple of hours I have to put my sweet dog to sleep. She's old and sick, and it's her time. But it's still sad. :cry:


01-28-2005, 04:16 PM
It's sad, but hopefully, if this is best for your dog, then you can find comfort that your dog will not suffer. I will be thinking of you and your dog today Amy. You will have your family and friends to help you, but your knitting community is here to support you too.

Even though this is better to do in person, I'm sending a special hug your way...

O *hugs* O

01-28-2005, 04:40 PM
Oh Amy. I can't believe you brought this up. I'm so glad you did.
And try and get through the day and tomorrow by celebrating your dog's life. It's so so painful. I've put down 3 beloved cats so far and now my best girl, Toisie (the last part of my online name)
has a new lump. lumps schmumps how I hate them.
She had one last spring that was operated on and was benign and I was overwhelmed with happiness.

She turns 11 this year and she helped me I believe through the bad times when my mum died of cancer 5 years ago, always barged into the room when I was crying and consoled me. Animals are so amazing... what a gift. My husband is a great source of strength when we go to put a 'family member' down. We once went straight to a bar and got champagne and toasted her and laughed and talked about all the stuff she did. Kind of like an Irish wake I suppose!

Well, that's enough! It's easy to give advice, hard to weather the reality. I keep trying to prepare for the loss of my cat by knowing I gave her 11 good years when I found her at the shelter and I'll bet you provided a good life for your baby. best thoughts to you... Vic

01-28-2005, 08:52 PM
Thanks Vic and Beldaraan. It means a lot to me to feel your support.

Yeah, my honey was with me through my entire twenties, and saw me through some hard times. And great times. She's such a part of my family. I've lost animals before, but it never felt this strong. My husband says the same thing. She was just very special to us. It's pretty intense.

I've got all this web-related work I have to do, and I haven't been able to do any of it since we found out her condition on Tuesday. At least we're not worrying about her anymore. We didn't sleep at all last night because of worry. At least that horrible part is over and she's at peace.

Thanks for your kind words.

03-23-2005, 12:39 AM


sorry for the all-caps... sleepy

03-23-2005, 03:30 AM
My 10 yr old dd has been looking at these at our lys. They were only $9 there. They also had a set of round ones. She isn't interested in knitting our way, but loves her knitting knobby. She has made a 5' tube as big as your thumb :mrgreen: At least with this you can actually make something useful out of them. You could also use them to make baby clothes made out of blocks & strips. It looks fun to me.