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What are Needle Holders?

By Del Sandeen
Updated May 16, 2024
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Needle holders are storage units for knitting needles. People who knit usually need a collection of various size needles to accommodate different patterns. As a knitting needle collection grows, knitters require a place to store their assorted needles. This helps to organize these tools and make them easy to find. The term may also refer to a way to store sewing needles.

Needle holders are available in many designs. Knitters can make their own out of fabric; this is a good way for knitting enthusiasts to choose their own materials, colors, and designs. A sewing machine isn't required for making knitting needle holders as it is often a simple project that can be hand-sewn.

To better organize needles, knitters may look for a needle holder with divisions to keep needles separate. The needles can then be arranged by size or material. A thick, sturdy fabric such as canvas, denim, cotton, or quilted cotton makes a good holder because the pointed ends of knitting needles are less likely to poke through.

Needle holders are available for straight knitting needles, which are the kind with a knob on one end to prevent stitches from falling off, and also for circular needles, which come in a wide variety of lengths based on the cable connecting the needles on either end. A needle holder for circular needles may be made of plastic or fabric. They're often designed so that needles can slide into an opening, allowing the ends to hang free. Other circular needle holders allow knitters to encase these needles in a plastic sleeve, where the needles stay loosely coiled until ready to use.

When looking for needle holders, knitters should make sure they are long enough to accommodate their longest knitting needles, as needles come in different lengths. Holders for needles can be rolled up or fastened with ties or Velcro to close. This makes them easy to transport if a knitter likes to carry a variety of needle sizes with her.

Knitters can find needle holder patterns on various craft sites or forums, but it's easy to come up with a unique design. When creating a holder, a knitter should decide how to keep the needles separate, for straight needles, or how large the compartments should be, for circular needles. Pockets large enough to fit more than one set of needles can be made, if desired. Ways to affix the needle size onto individual pockets can also be found, which will make it easy to identify the needles at a glance.

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