As the weather heats up, so does our itch to travel. And naturally we knitters wouldn’t leave home without our yarn. The easiest way to bring along our knitting? Small knitting projects, of course!
Small knitting projects allow you to knit while you travel, whether you’re riding in a cramped car or sitting way too close to the airplane passenger next to you. As you’re planning your upcoming travels, consider these tips and small knitting projects that are portable enough for any travel situation.
Memorize the stitches
Some patterns are so easy that if you work a couple rows, you can memorize the pattern in no time. Then you won’t have to keep glancing at the pattern or making notes. This Cable Braid Bracelet (seen above) is a great travel project — not just because it’s a small knit project, but also because once you get the hang of the pattern repeat, there’s no need to refer back to the pattern! The pattern comes with a headband pattern, too, in case you finish the bracelet and need another project.
Review the pattern
If you’re using a pattern, read over it before you leave to make sure everything is familiar. There’s nothing worse than getting caught on an airplane or train without Wi-Fi to look up a technique or specific stitch. It could stall your entire project until you return home. Make notes on your pattern, if you’re using one.
True story: I like to knit bags while traveling because once I finish about half of it, I can actually use the bag to store all my knitting project supplies while on the road. Plus, if I finish the bag while I’m on the trip, I can swap bags and carry my new one instead! The Multiplicity knitted bag pictured above is a cool option for anyone interested in perfecting double knitting.
Avoid needle-related injuries
Think about the spaces you’ll be in during your traveling. Will there be room for longer straight needles? If you’ll be knitting on a plane, circular needles are your best bet, otherwise you’ll be poking a very angry seatmate with those straight knitting needles. (Sometimes seatmates deserve to be poked, yes. But we must resist.) Also keep in mind how well your needles will travel. Double-pointed needles, for instance, could easily roll off your lap and into the abyss of lost airplane or bus belongings. My preference for travel needles are circular, but find what works best for you and your situation.
It’s hard enough to juggle stitch markers, needles, yarn and the pattern when you’re sitting in one place. Go digital if possible by uploading patterns to a phone or tablet. You’ll already have those tech devices on you, anyway, so why not save yourself from shuffling papers around? Luckily, Craftsy’s knitting patterns are already in PDF format, so you can access them right from your Craftsy account and save them to your device!
Another great thing about Craftsy patterns is that if you forget to bring along a project, you can find one instantly. Download these Deco Fingerless Gloves pattern seen above , for instance, from anywhere and you’ll get the download right away. (Pssst, it’s also a great excuse for visiting a yarn store at your destination! You’ll need supplies to go along with that project, after all.)
Work in pieces
Small knit projects don’t mean limiting yourself to knitting projects of a certain size. Take the Watermelon Patch Baby Blanket above as an example. The squares are knitted individually, then seamed together. Think of how portable this blanket is before it’s seamed together. You could knit one square at a time, stash away the finished squares, and save the seaming for later when you have more space.
Make Craftsy your travel buddy
Want even more ideas for portable projects? Let Craftsy be your travel buddy! The Craftsy app for iPhones and iPads now works offline, so you can download your classes, notes and materials, and access them even if you can’t connect online! Check out Brilliant Knit Beads with Betsy Hershberg and Knit Lab: In the Round with Stefanie Japel for dozens of projects that will fit easily into your luggage. Plus, you can contact our Craftsy instructors while you’re on the go if you have questions.