As a new knitter I often purchased the least expensive notions and tools. Don't get me wrong, inexpensive is great and not all inexpensive tools are cheap or cheaply made, but over the years I've slowly upgraded my toolkit to include lovely and useful tools that will last me for years to come.
I love the removable stitch markers from Fringe Supply Co. They look very similar to coil-less safety pins but have a circular end to fit around the needle much a like a traditional fixed stitch marker. HiyaHiya also makes these markers in shiny brass or nickel so you can choose your poison, er, finish. $3.50 - $6.
If you are partial to closed stitch markers with a little bling then I can recommend Velvet Hippo on Etsy. Torii makes lovely color-coordinated sets of markers that slip easily between needles and provide just the right amount of sparkle to your knitting project without getting caught or snagged on your stitches. $3 - $15.
I have a partiality to zippered project bags so when I received my Anne of Green Gables kit from Little Skein I was thrilled! The shawl-sized bags are roomy, sturdy, and have interfaced sides so you can knit directly out of them like a yarn bowl (very handy for knit night). Anne's stitching is impeccable and her fabric choices are spot on (she also has luxurious knitting kits in her shop).
$28 and up.
Chubby Cloud has an amazing array of project bags and miscellany offered up in her Etsy shop. You can find everything from knot bags to zippered pouches to kindle and iPhone cozies in fabrics funky to adorable. I picked up her new design at KnitFit! at the beginning of the month and it has been in constant rotation ever since. $15 and up.
My knitting group consists of several Tom Bihn devotees and while I haven't tried them myself I trust the opinion (obsession?) of my knitting friends. The Yarn Stuff Sack is the bag I'm most familiar with but Tom Bihn carries a large selection of bags that are easily adaptable for knitting purposes. Tom Bihn's fabric choices and styles are very unisex so if you're gifting to a knitter of the male persuasion this might be just the thing. $9 and up.
Scissors and Snips
My favorite scissors are Gingher 4" lightweight embroidery scissors. You can find them at most local yarn stores and they're small enough to fit in most notion pouches. I like the non-metal grip and the very sharp blades. $13 and up.
Fringe Supply Co. has a lovely variety of scissors to choose from if you want to get a little more fancy with your snipping. Personally, I think the Italian Bow Scissors are quite nice. $8 and up.
Let's not forget our local yarn stores! Shop small and shop local this Holiday season to support your local economy. Small business owners depend on support from their communities to stay in business and you can help them out by shopping locally this season.