I didn't mention this in class ... but I should have. Software is not a necessity but a really great "nice to have". I like that the software does much of the number-crunching/drudge type stuff so I have more time to knit -- always a good thing. There is a company called Knitting Software which has some of the best, easiest to use, most versatile design software out there. Carole Wulster (and now her family, too) started this company back in 1990 ... a computer programmer and knitter, she created the first version of Sweater Wizard (now in Version 3)... than went on to create other software tools for knitters. I was blessed to be able to help beta-test some of these software programs over the years and have used them extensively in my own design work for the past 15 years or so. Here are all the software available to help knitters design so we can spend our time KNITTING!
- Stitch and Motif Maker -- to chart textured or colored stitch patterns (some books STILL don't chart these and it is so much easier for us visual folks to see what the stitch should look like rather than trying to follow the words (or worse, abbreviations and symbols!)
- Sock Wizard -- to design socks that fit! You can input foot length, ankle diameter, leg length, whatever to get a sock pattern that really fits
- Knitting Math Wizard -- for quickly "doing the math" of placing even decreases or increases, getting the appropriate angle for sleeves, etc
- Print-a-Grid -- for printing out graph-paper blanks that is exactly what your gauge is -- the right sts and rows to the inch so you can really see what the pattern will look like (especially great when graphing intarsia or picture knitting)
- Swatch Wizard and Mitten Glove Wizard -- these are two new programs that I haven't used yet but look great. Swatch Wizard keeps a database of swatches so you can "remember" exactly what you got with which needles and which yarn; Mitten Wizard allows you to design mittens with directions "written" for 4 or 5 dpns, 2 or 1 circulars knitting!
- Bliss, Debbie -- Design it, Knit it: Secrets from the Designer's Studio
- Budd, Ann -- The Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns and The Knitter's Handy Book of Sweater Patterns.
- Ellen, Alison – Hand Knitting: New Directions
- Epstein, Nicky – Knitting on the Edge, Knitting Over the Edge, Nicky Epstein’s Knitted Embellishments, and her Nicky Epstein’s Knitted Flowers
- Fanderl, Lisl -- Bauerliches Stricken 1 , Bauerliches Stricken 2, Bauerliches Stricken 3
- Newton, Deborah -- Designing Knitwear
- Vogue Editors -- The Best of Vogue Knitting Magazine: 25 Years of Articles, Techniques, and Expert Advice
Other supplies you might like to have: