Thursday, 30 April 2015

A Question of Storage (Part One)

I was recently listening to the Prairie Girls Knit and Spin podcast, when Susie and Danie were discussing their storage solutions for knitting needles. What made me think was how fixed in space their solutions were: from vases, to mugs, to pencil cases, they were all focused on the moment before the project is begin. Since almost every knitter you meet will have a different preference for DPNs, or circulars, or straights long enough to hold under your arm, it isn't that surprising that each knitter's knitting basket / toolkit is different, and yet, everyone's normal is their own way of doing it.

So in the interests of show and tell, I thought it might be worth sharing my own choices. They aren't perfect (and I'm thinking about ways to improve them, but am wary of pushing too far towards processes that won't be followed – if I don't end up using my systems, they aren't very valuable!)

First, my straight needle holder: I don't use these often, so really, this has become a long-term storage solution. It has a handy diagonal slant to allow access to shorter needles, and pockets of a variety of widths, together with a top flap to stop things falling out! When I'd made it, I found the usual Needle Roll idea wasn't going to work with my collection of needles or fabric choice, and so I have what I rather like to think of as a Needle Fold, instead.

Much more useful and regularly used is my small Needle Roll with Swallows, which holds my circular tips and DPNS. With two rows of pockets, it does still hold all of these at the moment, though it is possible that, were I to finish all my WIPs, it would be rather tight. The button and ribbon closure works well, though I'm ashamed to admit that I completely failed to add that vital 'stop them all falling out' flap, so it is somewhat less portable than I would have hoped in the planning stages.

Finally, the circular needle storage has lost its button (#ugly), but is nonetheless my preferred option. I looked at various ways of storing circular needles in a long, straight or dangly fashion, and couldn't bear the thought of the tangles... so I made felt tubes and sewed them to the centre of a cotton wrapper. The resulting pockets take my range of circulars and cables, plus crochet hooks, and occasionally (when I remember to put it away) needle gauge.

And as for notions - I have a couple of re-purposings for you. My absolute favourite stitch marker and small notion keeper? The egg from the middle of a Kinder egg: will fit enough to keep you knitting, and you get to justify the chocolate purchase!

For those times when the egg isn't quite enough, I've a lipstick holder (that I got in a Christmas cracker), which has the benefit of being big enough to hold a selection of yarn needles.

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