Knitting ain’t just for grannies anymore. Thanks to the knitting world’s huge online presence (seriously, you’d be flabbergasted at the number of knitting blogs there are), modern knitters come from all walks of life, and one of the major community hubs of the knitting Net is Knitting Daily, which also conveniently comes as a free iPhone app.
If you’ve never visited Knitting Daily before, you might find the site a bit overwhelming, since it’s pretty much a huge knitting extravaganza. They’ve got blogs, videos, forums, patterns, and probably half a dozen other things I haven’t even thought of. It ain’t Ravelry, but it’s not half bad, and the ability to carry it around in your pocket for free? Well, that’s not too shabby either.
Now, the app is basically just an app interface for the regular site, although I’m sorry to report that it loses some of its functionality and charm with its layout. You’ll need a data plan or WiFi access to make proper use of the app, and instead of the full site, everything has been pared down to a phone-friendly format, leaving you with the latest blog and video entries and a glossary of knitting terms.
On the one hand, the blog feed is a fantastic read, full of useful tips and gorgeous inspiration to get you genuinely excited about knitting, but the delivery is awkward at best. It’s essentially a basic RSS feed that does some painful things to the formatting and makes navigation a bit rocky at times. The video section is somewhat easier to manage, but both the blog and video feeds suffer from a lack of organization. Because there are no categories or search options, you may find yourself drowning in an unmanagable sea of knitting news.
The glossary, however, is a fantastic little resource to have around. It’s filled with lots of detailed explanations and clear illustrations of a number of different techniques and stitches, but as with the other sections, the lack of a search feature boggles the mind and takes away from the functionality.
Still, the number one feature I was hoping to find in this app was a disappointing no-show. Although there are tons of freebie patterns available at the regular Knitting Daily site, there is no dedicated pattern section in the app. You can go digging for them in the blog feed, but that’s a tedious task at best.
Ultimately, Knitting Daily is definitely one of the major forces within the knitting world, and even releasing an app is definitely a step in the right technological direction, but while it delivers a considerable amount of very worthwhile content, the app is lacking those little details that would really make it shine. However, given that the app is entirely free, you can at least claim that you’ve gotten your money’s worth.
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