Owning beautiful yarns in a rainbow of colours along with shiny or natural bamboo needles are part of the pleasure of knitting. While collections can get quite large, we still want them near us to admire and inspire, so storage has to be convenient, decorative and functional.
Storing Knitting Needles
Most knitters end up with huge collections of knitting needles. The temptation to buy new designs can be just for the colour or look, and have nothing to do with need. Keeping track of them all, however, is never as easy as accumulating them in the first place. Here are some ideas:
- Any container deep enough to take their length will make a handy holder you can keep on show. Vases, either glass or pottery, tins, jars or even bottles can all be used. If the container is plain, knit a decorative cover to show off your skills.
- Craft or hobby boxes and small tool boxes are ideal. Keep needles in the bottom, larger compartment, and use the smaller slots in the top compartment for such things as row counters, stitch markers and bodkins.
- Fabric needle rolls are good portable containers, but take care not to fill them so full they won’t roll up and fasten.
- Home made solutions such a sewn hanger for circular needles, with narrow channels stitched in that you can push the needle through. Hung on the wall, the needles are easily retrieved and can be stored in size order.
- Decorative metal biscuit tins with lids are nice to display in a craft room and keep needles dust free and in good condition.
- Circular needles have the advantage of folding up relatively small. Keep them in zip-lock bags, clearly labelled with the size of needle.
- Knit and lightly stuff a ball roughly the size of a tennis or cricket ball. Secure it to a base (make a circular one with French knitting or crochet) and use it as a giant pin cushion for your DPNs.
- Use a plastic cutlery drawer insert in your craft cabinet for needles, DPNs, crochet hooks and other smaller accessories.
It’s easy to accumulate enough yarn to open your own shop when knitting is your passion. How to store it so it stays in good, clean condition without getting knotted or dusty can be quite a challenge.
Make the collection part of your decor. This isn’t as silly as it sounds, especially if you’re lucky enough to have a craft room. You could replace the fronts of traditional chests of drawers with Perspex so you can see the colours inside, or install a row of box shelves to hold neatly stacked, coordinating balls of yarn.
If you prefer not to have yarn on show, an ottoman footstool is an ideal knitting hideaway that also gives quick access to works in progress.
If your collection is really large and you need to clear some space at home without parting with it, one solution could be a self storage unit. Go through all the collection and decide which types of yarn you definitely won’t be using over the next few weeks or months. Maybe you have heavy weight yarns that you know you won’t want to knit during the summer, for instance. Pack up what you plan to store in transparent tubs, separating by colour, fibre or weight.
Similarly, heavier knitting equipment such as knitting machines take up lots of space at home, and are candidates for self storage when you’re not using them for a while. These heavy, bulky machines take up room whether they’re ready for use or packed away and can be awkward to store at home.
Balls store easier than hanks or skeins. Spend some time with a yarn winder and convert your collection into neat balls you can stack on top of each other. It also means the yarn is ready for use when you are, without further preparation.