There's an App for That Crafty Thing You Do
By debra roby on March 04, 2010
BlogHer Original Post
I live with my iTouch near me all day. It's my alarm clock in the morning, my constant reminder of what to do during the day, my note pad, my food and exercise tracker. I SO wish more places I went had wifi, so it could help me be even more productive. I do not own a "smart phone" yet, though as soon as I have the time to stop my cellphone store, I'm picking up a Android phone. Will it replace my iTouch or will both live in my pocket all day?
With my current obsession with these little devices and how they can make my everyday life both easier and more entertaining, I decided to search out all the crafty apps I could find. I honestly didn't expect to find many -- but I was a little surprised. I did discover that fellow BlogHer Laura Henry -- much more techie and cool than I -- blogging at hank You For Not Being Perky shares my obsession. She also shared a variety of apps she has found to be the Best iPhone apps for crafty, creative and artistic people. I used her suggestions to find the Etsy apps below -- and then jumped in for a search for my own.
Knitters seem to be luckiest when it comes to craft-specific apps:
Quilt2Go creator, Paul Mietz Egli, has created two knitting apps for the iTouch/iPhone:
- Stitchminder is a a FREE single-project, counting utility application. The project provides up to four customizable counters: rows completed, pattern row, increase and decrease. The counter is stored whenever you close the program.
- Knitminder is the greatly upgraded version of Stitchminder. Knitminder Lite (free) allows you to track up to four Projects (planned, in progress, finished, or on hold); Patterns; Yarns (by weight, color or brand); and Needles. The full version ($2.99) gives you unlimited organizational capabilities. While it would require entering the data a second time, this is like carrying your Ravelry account around in your pockets.
Image courtesy quilt2go.com
As Egli finished up his Knitminder app and submitted it for approval, fellow programmer David Ross beat him to the punch with his own app: KnitBuddy ($2.99). Egli did a fine comparison of KnitBuddy and KnitMinder apps when they first came out. Note that prices have gone down and it appears that options have increased. At this time, there is no plan for either programmer to make these programs available for Blackberry, Palm, or Android OS.
Michael Golden developed the iKnit Needle Sizer ($0.99) to replace your standard needle guage measure. Now THIS is an app worth having for me, since I often carry two or three sized of needles with me and can't always identify them by size.
iSpin Toolkit ($4.99) is the application for handspinners. I know nothing about handspinning; however, ManicPurl has a podcast where she reviews iSpin Toolkit -- including features, pros and cons.
QuiltFab2.0 (free) is a useful app to answer the question: How much fabric will I need for those extra touches in my quilt (plain filler blocks, sashing, binding, backing)? It allows you to input the finished, size of a quilt, and it will calculate these measures for you. I do not see where it will calculate setting triangles -- one of the trickiest features to nail.
C&T Publishing is making its popular flip-reference material available as apps. First offering is the Quick & Easy Quilt Block Tool ($3.99). From their website:
- 102 of the most-popular pieced blocks in 5 sizes each, with design details and construction diagrams
- Find cutting instructions at your fingertips with our quick and easy rotary-cutting charts and indexes
- Helpful reference tables such as yardage requirements, diagonal measurements, and more
- User-friendly instructions and a complete block index and grid index
- It's the ultimate no-math reference guide for quilters!
- Create your own index of favorites
- Zoom in on piecing diagrams for crystal-clear viewing
Etsy Addict ($.99)lets you browse the shops from your iPhone. You can search by tag, seller, price, color or the general description. It even allows you to purchase a great find you discover before someone else snatches it up.
For many crafters, however, the truly needed application will be Etsy Shop Tools. ($0.99) From the developers:
I brought mobility to Etsy Shop Tools via the Etsy Shop Tools iPhone Application. All the same functionality of Etsy Shop Tools plus some bonus galleries specificially for the iPhone (just released 10/13/2009). With a powerful tool called Showoff, an Etsy shop owner can take a virtual portfolio of their shop with them on their iPhone wherever they go. Etsy Shop Tools also adds a bonus of adding items to your web galleries through your iPhone. Double bonus: Buy the iPhone app and you don't need to pay the $1 PayPal Registration Fee. And for you non-iPhone people: no worries. Etsy Shop Tools editions are in the works for Android and Palm....
After a long day of shopping or crafting, perhaps you would appreciate Yoga Stretch to carry through a series of traditional yoga moves to relieve the tension in your body. We all know it's important to stretch.
What crafty apps have you found for your smart phone? Please share, because I know Laura and I are not isolated in our desire to make smart gadgets truly my own.
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