The phrase stash enhancement typically refers to new yarn purchases that enter a fiber artist’s home. However, in this blog I’ll be using it to label posts for all kinds of purchases that are related to my crafty endeavors. It will often be yarn – I am sure I will be on an episode of Hoarders, Extreme Yarn Addictions if that show ever exists, but it may also be notions, beads, organizational tools, paper crafting items or any other interesting purchase that enhances my creative space or project supplies. It’s enhancing my happiness and the craft studio stash is expanding, so I figure it counts. With that business out of the way, on to my first product review!
If you have been knitting any amount of time and are as tool obsessed as I am, you’ve probably accumulated quite the collection of knitting needles. Straights, DPNs, fixed circulars, an interchangeable set or two, extra tips in some sizes…it can quickly get out of control. I’ve tried various methods of organizing the madness, and some worked really well for awhile. For instance, I tried the little tin bucket method and had a beautiful display of various size and colors of straights in one, the tips of an interchangeable set in another, and some fixed circs in a third. As my collection grew, though, it became harder and harder to fit the growing collection of fixed circs and DPNs in the buckets, and as I started taking more and more classes the various needles got separated from their mates as they ended up in various project bags. Once I started making more complicated projects, I found I had to carry multiple size tips or needles with me to classes, as well.
My most recent method of organization resulted in something like this when I would pack a project bag:
- Hmm, I have a class tomorrow, what size needles do I need?
- Oh, a US 4 and a US 6 with 24″, 32″ and 40″ cords…that shouldn’t be a problem.
- What size is this cord? Is that even a standard size?
- Found my US 6 tips! Now I just need to put some caps on this project and find another cord in that size.
- Rummage some more through the various organization containers.
- These needles look small, I wonder what size they are? Is that a 5 or a 6? Where are my glasses?!
- Oh, hey, success! US 4 tips! Oh wait…those are the Dreamz tips and the sixes are the Royale tips….
- I wonder if the LYS has some US 4 tips in stock….
- Forget it, I’ll just buy some Addi fixed circs in all three size cords for whatever needles I need.
As you can see, it’s a very effective system. And the reason I now have more needles than I can shake a stick at. I knew I needed something that would organize my needles in a way that was easily accessible and portable. So off to Etsy I went looking for a solution. If I had not put off learning how to sew, I probably could have made one, but sewing classes are still on the to do list.
When evaluating my choices, there were some things that were non-negotiable for me. I wanted it to hold both sets of interchangeables, not just one. I wanted it to hold the associated cords. I wanted a zippered pouch to hold the end caps and other little notions. Also on the wish list was a combination set up that might also hold DPNs or crochet hooks, and I really wanted a cute pattern for the fabric. Whether it was a bucket style bag with loops or a case that rolled up was not that important to me as long as it worked.
I settled on the XL Interchangeble Knitting Needle Case by TheOrganizedKnitter. I had a hard time choosing which case to order because the fabric choices available were all super cute. The prices were also incredibly reasonable compared to other sellers with similar items. Shipping was quick, and my new case was in my hands within just a few days.
The case itself is beautifully sewn; the workmanship is spectacular. Folded up, the case is compact in size despite the amount of tools it holds inside.
There is plenty of room for the tips of both my sets with enough room in the slots to hold an extra pair, plus six extra slots for various size cords. Since there are six slots for cords, I separated mine by size, which will make it easy to find the size I need.
There is a flap that folds over the needles prior to rolling the case up and securing it closed to prevent items from falling out if the case is jostled around in my tote bag. I worried that a flap wouldn’t be secure enough, but once the case is rolled up, it really is quite secure and does the job perfectly.
A zippered pouch is attached to hold small items and is attached to the case so that it doesn’t get misplaced. I filled the pouch with some caps for the end of the cords, and it did add some bulk when rolled, but if you were to put smaller or flatter items in the pouch I doubt you would notice the extra bulk.
Once rolled up, it makes for a fairly compact item that you can throw into your knitting bag and have all of your interchangeables at your reach on the go. Have I mentioned that it is cute?
I am not a fan of the belted closure. The closure isn’t that important to me, so it is an option I can live with, but the threading of the fabric belt through the closure is something that takes a little more time than if it simply snapped shut. There are other listings from this seller that indicates custom orders are available and she does have snap closures available on her smaller cases, so I am sure I could have messaged the seller and asked for a different closure but I am an instant gratification girl and didn’t want to wait for that negotiation and lead time that might be necessary to look into that. The optional iron-on needle sizes were sold out when I purchased mine, otherwise I would have added those on. I will come up with a creative solution on how to keep track of the sizes in place of the iron-ons.
I had originally hoped to include some of my most used fixed circs or my crochet hooks in the same case, but once filled with my existing items I don’t think that will be an option for me. That is no fault of the item, it was just my unrealistic expectations being reigned in.
Overall, it is fantastic case! In fact, I love this case so much I will most likely order the DPN case from the same shop.