"App"etizers, anyone?

There are even apps to help you make icon images, like this one!

There are even apps to help you make icon images, like this one!

We've been using iPads at the store more and more. We use them for sales, to check inventory, find information online, take pictures and send messages. They've become an indispensable tool. And then there are the apps! Where would we be without these little bundles of software that keep us entertained and organized? Here are four apps that I use every day. They appeal to my "yarny" nature and help me make important decisions (like what to buy and how much!) 

Knit Handy and Crochet Handy are great apps for estimating yarn requirements on the go.

Knit Handy and Crochet Handy are great apps for estimating yarn requirements on the go.

It's no secret. I love everything Ann Budd does. Ann has a series of "handy" books and trust me, they are fantastic but we're talking about apps, not books today. One of Ann's acts of genius was to create two handy apps for figuring out how much yarn you need. Knit Handy and Crochet Handy will take the guesswork out of figuring yarn requirements for a great assortment of projects. You simply pick a project, select the size you want to make and the gauge you will be working in. Ann's app will tell you how much yarn to buy in metres or yards (your preference). The Knit Handy and Crochet Handy apps are paid apps (at the time of this posting, $1.39 USD) but it's money well spent!

The Knit Handy app delivers the yardage requirements for eight of the most popular knitted items: sweaters, vests, mittens, gloves, socks, scarves, tams, and hats... [and] the Crochet Handy app provides requirements for basic caps, scarves, bags, afghans, ponchos, baby sweaters, skirts, and tops.
— Ann Budd
Your gift ideas go into Giftster and out comes a simpler way to give and get gifts that matter most – without the anxiety.
A free, private, web and mobile gift registry connecting family and close friends.
Set it up once, use it for a lifetime.
— Giftster.com

Buying gifts for fibre artists can be tricky. You want to buy yarn but what colour? How much? Needles/hooks? What size and length? There are so many decisions to make. We've found a little app called Giftster that makes getting your list exactly right, easy. You set up a list and invite family and friends to join in. It's private, so only those you invite will get to see your list. I've got one set up for my family for our Christmas wish lists. I can reserve a gift idea (so no one else on the list buys it) and I can mark it "bought" without the recipient knowing. It has a web search engine built in so you can shop online and find just the right item, then click on the "fetch" button and giftster will add all the details, including a picture, for you. Or you can write a description yourself so if what you want isn't on the web (e.g. a dozen freshly baked cookies by my friend Connie), you can still have it on your list.

Stash2Go is an app that works with your Ravelry.com account.

Are you a Ravelry user? You're going to love Stash2Go Lite, a free app for Ravelry users. Download the app, link it to your Ravelry account and you'll have your projects, queue, stash, library, friends and more right on your phone or iPad. You can add your needle inventory to Ravelry and have it with you when you're shopping. Stash2Go will notify you (if you want notification) when you have a message or when there are new posts on a forum that you participate in. The only downside to free is that you will have ads popping up on the screen.

Don't have a Ravelry account yet? Ravelry is close to celebrating its 10th anniversary. I've been a member since 2007 and recommend it to anyone who isn't already a member. It's free to join and it's a great place to spend time ('cause you will... spend time... lots of time) there. Ravelry is a website and doesn't have an app, so Stash2Go is a great add on to your Ravelry account.

Is there an app you like that makes your life (and the yarn in it) more manageable? Leave a comment and tell us what apps you think should make the "stuck on a desert island with just my phone and a solar charger and my project bag". We're interested.