I’m getting ready for a 5-day trip this week, so I thought it would be a good time to share these 3 tips for traveling with your crochet or knitting.
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These tips will help whether you are traveling for business or for pleasure. You can also find a video version of these tips at the end of post.
Tip 1: Get the right supplies
Whether you’re traveling by plane, car, train, or bus, having the right supplies is a must.
Safety scissors: A pair of child’s scissors with rounded blades is the best option for travel. There’s no danger that you’ll prick your fingers while digging in your project bag, and these scissors will move quickly through airport security.
Travel kit: At home, you may not think much about notions since you have access to your supplies all the time. If you travel frequently, maintain a full set of basic notions in a travel pouch. You can just drop this pouch into your project bag when you pack without having to gather up notions each time. My travel kit includes:
- A pair of child’s safety scissors,
- Locking stitch markers that can be used for crochet or knitting,
- Assorted yarn and tapestry needles in a protective case,
- A gauge ruler, and
- A pen or pencil with a small notepad.
Other tools you may want to consider are row counters and tailor’s tape. Include affordable supplies in your kit, rather than treasured or handmade notions, since you may lose your kit during your travels.
Project bag: Crocheters and knitters have limitless options for project bags today. Whether you choose a stylish handbag that also serves as a wardrobe accessory, or simple, reusable market bag, keep your crochet or knit items together while traveling. Your project bag will protect your work from damage, make it possible to pick up and put down your work at a moment’s notice, and also allow you to easily present your crochet or knitting to airport security.
If you’re looking for a new project bag, some of my favorite sellers are:
Hooks and/or needles: I prefer to travel with my Denise kits because they allow me the flexibility of different hook and needle configurations but don’t take up much room in my luggage. Personally, I prefer the Denise2Go Crochet for a Cure 2-Hook Set for crochet and the Denise2Go small kit for knitting.
Although metal hooks and needles are allowed on airplanes, I prefer to bring plastic, wood, or bamboo hooks and needles when flying. They seem to put the safety agents at ease, and that makes my trip go a lot smoother.
Additional tools for knitters: It may be worthwhile to pack point protectors, which are optional most of the time but can be a big help while traveling. Not only do they make your needles look friendly to safety agents, but they can prevent your project from unraveling. A small crochet hook or Fix-a-Stitch kit in your bag can help you manage dropped stitches with ease.
If you’re flying, consider crocheting or knitting a few rows before you leave. While crochet hooks and knitting needles are approved for both carry on and checked luggage, having your work in progress makes it less likely you will be questioned by airport security.
Tip 2: Incorporate your hobby into your trip
Yarn shopping while on vacation can be a wonderful way to try new yarns and meet locals. This post includes 6 tips for finding yarn shops while traveling.
Don’t be shy once you enter the yarn shop! Let the staff and shoppers know you’re visiting from out of town. Ask if the shop has a local or regional yarn section or any exclusive colorways from larger dyers. Some yarn shops also sell branded project bags or private label yarn. These items can make wonderful mementos of your vacation or great gifts for your friends back home! You’ll also find that locals will have great suggestions for activities to do or places to eat during your trip.
Tip 3: Choose your project(s)
While one-skein projects and modular projects are particularly travel friendly, consider your own preferences – and travel plans – when packing your yarn and needles.
- Will you be spending a lot of time with family or friends? A simple project can be a great option if you’ll be socializing while crocheting or knitting.
- Will you be alone for much of the trip? A more complex project to challenge your skills may be perfect for a long flight.
- If you plan on yarn shopping while traveling, bring several hook and needle sizes so you can work with your new yarn right away!
But what about patterns? If you are bringing a tablet or e-reader, transfer patterns over before your trip. If you will have a lot of crochet or knitting time on your hands during your travels, you might want to bring a print book of patterns, especially if it is “travel sized.” You can also print out patterns from your PDF collection before leaving.
Traveling can also be a great time for experimenting! Perhaps you want to try freeform crochet or knitting or use a stitch dictionary to create your own design for the first time.
Whatever project you choose, realize that you will probably not get as much done as you expect during your trip! For this reason, it helps to pack light rather than stuffing your suitcase full of yarn. Besides, if you finish your project earlier than expected, you have more reasons to check out the yarn crafts scene at your destination!