We were asking on social media recently about how many hooks and needles people have and how they store them.
The answer to the first part seemed to generally be “a lot” while the storage options included jam jars, pringle tubes, Tupperware boxes and biscuit tins as well as handmade needle rolls and special cases.
It did make us wonder if we give our needle and hook collections as much love as our yarn stashes.
When was the last time you took all your needles and hooks out and sorted through them? Many of us have knitting knit that have come from parents or even grandparents much of which languishes untouched in boxes. Then there are those of us who now knit predominantly with circular needles but have dozens of pairs (or odd) straight needles in the cupboard, just in case. You find a similar ting with metal crochet hooks where crocheters have switched to wooden hooks or ones with ergonomic handles.
Most people get their whole yarn stash out for a sort from time to time, so why not do the same with your needles and hooks?
- Get them all out on a table and see what you really have. You can sort them by size (it is worth having a needle gauge and a Sharpie to hand), material and type (straight, circular or DPN).
- Separate out the needles or hooks that you use regularly and other ones that would be your first choice if a pattern called for a particular size or type of needle.
- Decide how to organise these – by size or type for example – and take the time to record what you have and where you have put it.
Take a look at what you have left. Do you have a use for these needles or hooks? If you don’t, it is time to think about what to do with these. Do you know someone else who likes those types or needles or hooks? Is there a craft club that could put them to use teaching people to crochet or knit. Or is there another use for orphaned needles?
We know jewellery makers who will use unwanted knitting needles to make loops of wire of particular sizes, so we looked for other uses. Among the ideas we have come across are tent pegs and candy floss sticks, or chopping and bending them to make jewellery.
But what other ways can we use those unwanted tools. We’re sure a creative group of folks like you will have some great ideas.