View Full Version : What to do with all that stuff?

02-06-2011, 10:40 PM
This isn't a "knitting question" per say, but I imagine it is a problem many have run into, and have hopefully solved. Basically, I'm looking for ideas as to how to house my knitting.

I do a lot of knitting, but I hate having skeins everywhere and multiple projects underway at once. At most, I limit myself to two or three projects, so the amount of yarn I have on hand is a conservative amount.

I've used, and promptly resold, cumbersome Rubbermaid boxes. I've also tried thick canvas bags, only to get my spare needles tangled up in the yarn at the bottom or have large needle holes punctured in the sides. I have since then made the investment to get silicone needle caps for my current projects. While the caps protect my bag, they do not help me organize/store my spare needles, which are currently bound together with rubber bands. I have at least one pair of each size.

What I am considering doing is either purchasing a long, narrow Rubbermaid (or other brand) box to keep my supplies (and needles!) in, or sewing a needle-sized bag of some sort. I would also like to sew a sturdy denim bag for the works (something without floppy sides!).

Anyone willing to share their ideas or suggestions? What do you "small workload knitters" do? Many thanks in advance!

Jan in CA
02-06-2011, 10:59 PM
So what is it you're looking for? Something to store your works in progress (WIP)? Or a way to store stash yarn?

Mine is a disaster right now, but I do have a bookshelf with glass doors and a closed one for my yarn. The projects themselves... heaven help them. :zombie:

02-06-2011, 11:09 PM
All of my stash yarn is happily nestled away in a dresser drawer, so that's not much of an issue. My works in progress are all very small so they should easily fit in one container. I'm just looking for ideas as to what that container should be, and I would like to be able to keep the supplies and projects together, yet separated. If that makes any sense.

I've seen my mom and grandma's knitting "disaster zones" so I know exactly what you mean! I'm just happy I've been able to avoid that for so long.

Jan in CA
02-06-2011, 11:13 PM
If the projects are small enough you could probably put them in gallon ziplocs and line them up on a shelf. Or some of those zipper bags...like the kind pillow cases (or whatever) come in. Hmm...I should take my own advice! If I ever finish this baby knitting stuff I've had to do I think I'll do some organizing!

02-06-2011, 11:32 PM
Right now I have three projects OTN (pretty typical). I have my sweater, pattern, and ball of yarn in a bowl on the coffee table. Behind the couch is an antique upright knitting bag/thingie (inherited from my aunt - it's pretty cool) which kind of stands open on little wooden legs and has pockets inside. I have all of my yarn in it (about 7 balls - they're pretty small), my works in progress, and all of my needles (mostly straights) sticking out of one of the pockets.

My couch is away from the wall with a sofa table behind it - - which is awesome because I can "hide" my knitting bag back there so it's out of sight, but really easy to get to.

I have a few balls of yarn upstairs in a closet tucked away in a shopping bag.

That's it.

OH and I have a tiny bowl on a side table and it has all of my doodads in it; scissors, markers, row counter, tape measure, etc. The bowl keeps it all together and looks less of a mess.

02-06-2011, 11:33 PM
I don't use straight needles. I keep my DPNs and circular needles in a 3 ring binder in plastic pouches made to fit the binder. Get them where school or office supplies are sold, and make sure the plastic pouches will close with Velcro or a zipper. I keep one size per pouch, in numerical order, so it's easy to find the size I need (OK . . . easy to find when I remember to put them away after a project!). My needle gauge fits nicely in the in the binder pocket, too.
I like storing yarn in large, clear Ziplock bags, and keep odd balls displayed in baskets at the edge of my stairs. I try to limit myself to two projects at a time: one large or complicated at-home project, and one small, brainless project (socks, usually) that will fit in a doubled ziplock bag inside my purse. A kid's bookbag can make a good project bag, too, with pockets for notions and the book section for a project.

02-06-2011, 11:35 PM
For smaller things, I like to use ziplock bags. For bigger bulkier projects...like afghans, they usually end up in a trash bag on a safe shelf in my closet.

02-07-2011, 02:05 PM
I invested in the Knitpicks clear plastic bags with zipper closures. I have a small one for my notions like tape measure, pencil, paper, small scissors, stitch markers, etc. a large on for all of my left over yarn and several medium size ones for wips. The large bag with small amounts of leftover yarn is put away with my stash, the small notion bag is on the table by my chair and the wip's are by my chair, in the car, or behind the couch.
My stash is in several places but I have it all listed on a spread sheet including location. I use circular and dp needles. They are kept in a Knitpicks circular case. It's the vinyl one that first came with the needles. I have 3 sets of tips and many cables in it as well as 2 sets of dp. I have another case that I keep the small size (0-3) and 16" diameter fixed circulars in.
I have all my knitting items listed in an Excel workbbok. One tab is yarn, another needles and equipment, another projects in process and completed, another books and another subscriptions. See what a retired accoutant does.

02-07-2011, 03:09 PM
I do only one project at a time but I do usually have the yarn bot for many more. The yarn I'm not using right away is in a bamboo basket with a lid on it on our enclosed deck.
We live in a condo and the deck has furnature like any other room. The basket was intended for laundry but I took the yucky lining out and my yarn resides there. The basket is quite tall and the lid is nice and flat so it is used on the deck as a display place.
The rest of my yarn is housed in a huge garbage bin also made of bamboo but without a lid. IT's full to the top but it has the stuff in it that I am planning on using for each project I have lined up for myself.
The yarn I'm using now is in a large glass bowl on the floor. I find it easier to take the yarn off the ball by having it in something it can turn freely in without the trouble of finding the center thread.
As for my knitting things... I have lots of straights that I love in a metal sap bucket. The rest on in a crystal vase on top of the side table next to my chair.
Lately I've been trying not to buy yarn, but to use up some of the yarn that I have already... this is working out quite well as I have emptied out another basket of yarn in this way.
Of course, the real problem is... you never have enough yarn and always have to buy something to finish off some project or other... :)
TEMA :knitting: :knitting: :knitting:

02-07-2011, 03:20 PM
Lol, I have a lot of stuff to store all my stashes in... I have an old cedar chest (most of my yarn and fabrics are in there), about three or four of those plastic standing cabinets with the drawers that slide out (various sizes) a large toolbox, lots of containers, shelving, etc. If you're looking for something to stash your stuff at home, you should try those rolling cabinet things... plastic or whatever. You can find them with drawers of several sizes or one size. To give you an idea... Walmart has a ton of them here... http://www.walmart.com/browse/Storage-Organization/Drawers-Carts/_/N-8wb3Zaq90Zaqce/Ne-2p4i?browsein=true&ic=48_0&ref=125874.415119&tab_value=172608_All&waRef=125874.125874+125874.183499+125874.415119&path=0%3A4044&catNavId=90828 You don't have to buy them at Walmart... many places sell them. The plastic ones are relatively cheap and work just fine for craft stuff. Yarn will never be so heavy that it breaks the thing... and some have narrow drawers that you could put patterns in... or you can get a file cabinet for that, if you have a lot. A file cabinet will also allow you to organize your patterns and magazines so you can find particular ones easier. You can also stick needles and such in the narrower drawers.

02-07-2011, 03:34 PM
Hi! :waving:

I've found that a cleaned out Pringles can works very well for storing straight needles. I'd recommend cutting a piece of felt or thing foam rubber or that non-skid backing to keep rugs from sliding - cut it round to fit in the bottom of the can. This keeps the needle points from getting damaged when you stand the can upright.

Good luck with your organizing. It's SO helpful in getting project done when you can find everything you need with no stress!

Happy knitting,

Ruthie :clink:

02-07-2011, 04:43 PM
A lot of this stuff is connected to being or not being a natural organizer. I'm of the first kind; it just comes natural to me without thinking about it. I even have all my knitting bookmarks in Firefox organized in folders and subfolders. But I have my other 1200 or so bookmarks organized that way too.

I keep each working project in a gallon ziploc, although I don't have many projects yet. I work with the open ziploc in my knitting bag to keep the yarn clean. My small stash is organized by fiber content on a shelf in small cardboard boxes facing forward to see the colors, all the Wool-Ease together, etc. Circ needles go into a small ziploc.

My cat Coconut likes the yarn wiggling up out of the bag, and decided where I should tear it off! Now she has her own wiggly piece.