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 Portable knitting projects: Make my own kits?
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Sandra C
Gabber Extraordinaire

403 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  08:01:10 AM  Show Profile  Visit Sandra C's Homepage Send Sandra C a Private Message  Reply with Quote
(edited to update signature)
Once again yesterday, we were going out and I knew I'd have almost an hour of passenger knitting time (my husband usually drives, yea!), but I didn't have anything put together to "grab and go." I have lots of projects underway, including:
A baby blanket that's more than half done, but it's too big and hot for summer knitting
A rug that I can only knit one row a day (heavier yarn than I'm comfortable with), plus it's now getting heavy
Miscellaneous other projects that are also not summer knitting

What I usually end up doing is grabbing some cotton yarn and a size 8 needle and starting *yet another* bias discloth.

However, I have (on my computer and in magazines and in books and printed out) probably hundreds of patterns of things I'd like to make. But when I'm getting ready to go out, of course I don't have time to pour through them to select one, then see what yarn I have that would work, and see if the needle size I need is available or already in use.

So last night I was thinking that maybe I should make up a few little kits for the various situations of portable knitting.

Has anyone done this and how do you decide what kits to put together?

Or am I just looking for an excuse to spend hours looking through my knitting books and magazines etc.? :-)

Any and all stories, ideas, and suggestions are most welcome!

Sandra C

Ditzy Girl
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4723 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  08:09:58 AM  Show Profile Send Ditzy Girl a Private Message  Reply with Quote
What a great idea.
I keep a project that is just for going out and do not knit on it at home. I have various groups that I knit with and most of what I am working on is not group friendly. I find socks are a great take away project, although right now my project is a simple pullover baby sweater for my gd.
Let us know what you decide to make into going out kits.

Zola, Seattle, Wash.

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Chatty Knitter

274 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  08:10:59 AM  Show Profile  Visit Honor's Homepage Send Honor a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My to go bag for knitting, has a whatever socks i am working on and a washcloth WIP. Occasionaly I will have an extra skeinof yarn for either socks or a washcloth tucked in especially if I am nearing the end of a project. all Kept in tote bag usually near my purse or on the table to grab going out the door. WIth it i have a soft sided pencil case with essentials, tape measure, scissors, extra knitting needles(for socks) and a couple of crochet hooks and darners/yarn needles.

Each project is kept in a ziplock or fabric project bag to keep everything organized and the yarn neat and clean untangled. right now i have 2 socks patterns and a washcloth WIP's that go with me.
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15375 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  08:29:25 AM  Show Profile Send mokey a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I don't have a separate bag for knitting, but I usually toss a dishcloth or plain sock into my purse when heading out. I never bring anything that needs a pattern or that I'd be heartbroken over losing.

Brought to you by the tongue in cheek-y monkey
Help me walk all over cancer
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Chatty Knitter

243 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  09:07:15 AM  Show Profile Send grouchywif a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I keep a small hardside bag in my car that has baby weight yarn and a hat in progress. I can knit baby hats without patterns and I give them to the charity I work with. That is my "emergency knitting".

I have a beautiful fabric small project bag that holds a sock pattern and yarn. It will also hold my notions bag, which I keep in the drawer of an end table for daily knitting and grab as I head out the door if necessary. I try to keep a simple sock pattern in it...something easily memorizable, since I've never done plain stockinette socks.

I also have two larger Lantern Moon totes. These hold larger or more detailed projects like sweaters, lace, another sock, etc. This sits next to my knitting spot at home and stores my WIPs. I can grab it, throw the small project bag in, toss in the notions bag, and head out for an overnight trip, say spending the night at my parents'.

I don't need to set up kits because I usually have 5-10 projects otn at any given time. All different weights and sizes, from a sweater for DH to a baby dress to a lace scarf. I keep each project with a copy of its pattern in one of my standing Lantern Moon totes in it's own plastic bag. Plastic zippered bags that sheets and other things come in are great for this, as are ziplocs.

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Seriously Hooked

792 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  09:13:01 AM  Show Profile  Visit crzyboutyarn's Homepage Send crzyboutyarn a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I always just grab my knitting bag, It alwasys has socks I am working on and then my main project, I always have everything I need in my knitting bag and it is always with me wherever I go, to work,to the doctors, to my friends out ,anywhere :-)

A Full Stash is a Happy Stash!!

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1122 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  10:03:23 AM  Show Profile  Visit knittingbuzz's Homepage Send knittingbuzz a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Like Mokey,I always have a sock or face/wash cloth in my handbag, just for such an occassion. I always like to have something to work on, especially if I'm stuck in line or have to wait. There is nothing worse than stuck waiting without a knitting project (however small) in hand.
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9715 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  10:24:52 AM  Show Profile Send lella a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My kits are the small WIPS. I love to knit whenever there is a free moment, and so this makes it possible. DBIL gave me a padded, soft sided lunch "box" that carries the current sock-in-progress, the current glove project, and sometimes my lace Pi Shawl that's not very big yet. These projects stay in this small bag all the time. It has a handle and dangles on an arm nicely, leaving the hands free.

In this little bag is kept a collection of everything carried in the bigger knitting bags; all these things are stored in various used pharmacy pill "bottles". Also in this bag are nearly all the bamboo sock needles, which are in a tallish plastic tube from Harbor Freight. That lunch bag is my "entertainment package" for wherever we are going for the day. Without the shawl, I can stuff a paperback in there, too. It's very compact and tidy. I like that it has an ad for Monroe on the front.

Just Blogging Through Life [IMG][/IMG]

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Warming Up

67 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  11:20:23 AM  Show Profile  Visit simonamd's Homepage Send simonamd a Private Message  Reply with Quote
If I don't have anything on my needles to easily take with, for quick carry-on projects I like to take some of my new yarns I have bought (big stash!), my pattern book, and needles of 2 - 3 different sizes; and I like to start swatching for a new project I either want to design or want to make. This way I make my swatch to see how certain patterns work together, how they flow together, how they work with my yarn and what the guage might be and work well. This helps me to "play" with my new yarns and thus "dream-up" my new design in spare time I would otherwise waste.

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1927 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  12:06:40 PM  Show Profile Send Chayah a Private Message  Reply with Quote
What a good idea. I hate being caught with nothing to knit in the car or waiting somewhere. This week we were travelling and I am the passenger too. I planned my knitting because I knew I would be riding for a long time. I made most of a baby bib, just garter stitch, and crocheted a little bag for a child-cousin, and a little hat for myself. I don't do anything complicated in the car. I usually use ziplock bags and carry a tote.
Happy knitting to all, Chayah

"When I was young I admired clever people. Now that I'm old I admire kind people."(A.J.Heschel)
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Chatty Knitter

260 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  2:00:11 PM  Show Profile  Visit Miss_Lizzyisaknitter's Homepage  Send Miss_Lizzyisaknitter a Yahoo! Message Send Miss_Lizzyisaknitter a Private Message  Reply with Quote
i think the kit is a good idea! lately i keep some cotton yarn at work in case i get in the mood to work a few rows on a dishcloth. that's probably the most easiest project to take on the go since it's so simple and don't require a pattern that you gotta make room for in the car or on the train or wherever you are.

let us know what kits you make up and what patterns you decided to use! :)

~~Proud Knitter~~
mom to Jaemie & Christopher Jr
i'm a "chatty knitter" yay!
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1844 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  2:57:05 PM  Show Profile Send scraffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Love the idea.
I have a few basic hat patterns and a few not so basic sock patterns in a binder.
If I knew that a trip was comig up I could pack the bag, pattern, yarn needles.
If the trip was sprung on me I might be stuck with trying to assemble the projects.
Sounds like a good excuse to buy 1 or 2 skeins of sock yarn and 1 or 2 skeins for a hat.
That way I could have them ready to travel.
I already went to the LYS today so that won't happen this week
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honorary angel

1650 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  3:16:25 PM  Show Profile Send llinn a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My best friend Sonny (also known as the Sawed Off Italian) not only plans to go kits, but sets up travel knitting so her hands can keep going while she looks at the scenery. Some years back she started the fronts of 5 sweaters and knit the ribbing and the first 4 or 5 inches (which had intarsia motifs), then had each one set up to finish in plain stockinette for a big trip to Utah. Or she'll start socks and work the foot and turn the heel, then just have the ribbing to do for a nice small project she doesn't have to look at.

Me, I ALWAYS have a knitting bag with something I can work on with me. I hate sitting and doing nothing--so I don't even walk into a building unless I have something to read and something to do. The number of times I have been sandbagged into standing around for no good reason taught me this.

And since I am the living breating embodiment of Murphy's Law, I almost never have to stand around and wait. Remember, anything you're prepared for, won't happen.


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1333 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  5:15:51 PM  Show Profile Send blazfglori a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I keep a small bag packed with a simple project, usually socks or fingerless mittens.

I only work on it when I'm "on-the-go".


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2903 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  6:08:06 PM  Show Profile Send Mocha a Private Message  Reply with Quote
You should be able to squeeze some portable things. I have a few WIPs, and I will normally chuck 2 into a bag that I lug around everywhere. My WIP's were strategicaly placed so I could grab anything I want. They are also normally placed in bags, i.e.: clear bags, ziploc, etc
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New Zealand
1673 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  8:26:53 PM  Show Profile Send busygirl a Private Message  Reply with Quote

I have a knitting bag which I use specifically for smaller,more portable projects,so that if I am going anywhere where I would have a chance to do some knitting,I can just pick up my bag and go.My current portable projects are a twisted rib scarf and a pair of Irish Hiking Wristwarmers,so I have plenty to keep me busy.


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Chatty Knitter

258 Posts

Posted - 07/29/2007 :  10:38:14 PM  Show Profile Send socker a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I have a small lunchbag I keep set up with at least 1 small project. One that requires only 1 skein of yarn, short needles, and only an occasional peek at the pattern. The short needles are so I don't poke everyone around me. So, it's usually socks, or, right now I have a knit back scrubber on a set of needles.

The bag also has a set of my required accessories: yarn needle, scissors, markers, tape measure, crochet hook, a very small extra needle and some fine guage yarn, so if I need to remove the UFO from the needles I can.
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1475 Posts

Posted - 07/30/2007 :  04:35:23 AM  Show Profile Send socks4all a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Awhile back I made a "Betty Bag" by Two Old Bags. It is just the size for a 100 gram ball of sock yarn, 2 circs, and a chibi. I've made so many socks I do them without patterns. CThis stays in the car. So, I always have a project to work on. This morning in the parking lot at work I discovered that one of my headlights is burnt out. I don't have to worry about the downtime of getting it fixed, I have my project with me. If I'm near the end of the socks (just the peasant heels) I'll take it in the house and finish so I have a new pair to start and not have to worry about running out. With just a little stretching I can fit 2 100 gram balls in the bag if I think I'm going on a long trip.
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Honorary Angel

919 Posts

Posted - 07/30/2007 :  05:13:16 AM  Show Profile Send lucienh a Private Message  Reply with Quote
As always, you people inspire me. As soon as I get a moment, I'm going to set up my projects, because the last two times I had unexpected hospital visits, all I had OTN was big, heavy, and complicated. I like the idea of swatching, and the caps, and the project-done-up-to-the-mindless-part idea. Now don't I have to go out and buy more yarn for all of these?

Spontaneity isn't random -- Malcolm Gladwell
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1896 Posts

Posted - 07/30/2007 :  05:21:02 AM  Show Profile Send ceecee a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Socks on one long circular + Ziploc bag + crochet hook + yarn cutter + free Ikea tape measure = portable project that'll fit into purse/handbag.
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Gabber Extraordinaire

395 Posts

Posted - 07/30/2007 :  11:52:08 AM  Show Profile Send daizie_ray a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I always have a pair of socks going. They make a great traveling project and they fit right into my purse/diaperbag. I usually have yarn, needles, measuring tape and maybe a darning needle in a small bag or ziplock so that everything is together when I need it. It makes traveling and waiting much easier.
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