A roll-up case for your straight knitting needles is an easy sewing project and a great way to store your needle stash in one compact place. It would make an excellent gift for a friend who knits, especially with a few pretty needles in it. Once filled, it easily rolls up and ties shut with a length of coordinating ribbon.
You can make this case with 24 pockets for needles of different lengths, or customize it with more or fewer pockets to suit your needs. It's an easy project, even if your sewing skills are at a beginner level. And if you don't have a sewing machine, you can hand sew the case in a few hours.
Finished needle case will hold up to 24 straight knitting needles in lengths from 7 to 14 inches.
The shorter pockets hold 10-inch needles and even 7-inch dpns, while the larger pockets are great for 14-inch needles.
Quilting cotton works well for this project, as does linen, or a mix of the two. However, linen is a little trickier to work with, so if you are a beginner, stick with quilting cotton.
To make your pockets in two different fabrics, make sure you have 1/3 yard in each of two fabrics instead of the 3/4 yards specified in the Materials list.
Equipment / Tools
- Sewing machine
- Fabric shears or other sharp scissors
- Disappearing ink pen, or pencil
- Iron and ironing board
- 3/4 yard quilting cotton or linen fabric for outside
- 3/4 yard quilting cotton or linen for pockets
- 1 yard ribbon
Prewash cotton fabrics and press if needed.
Outside of the case: Cut two 25 x 17-inch pieces of fabric.
Pockets: Cut one 25 x 7-inch and one 25 x 10-inch piece of fabric for the pockets.
Ribbon: Cut the ribbon into two 18-inch pieces.
Use a rotary cutter and cutting mat to make cutting pieces to size quicker and easier.
Press and Hem Pockets
Fold one long edge of each of the pocket pieces to the wrong side 1/4-inch, press. Fold it another 1/4-inch, press again.
Working about 1/8-inch from the fold, sew. Take care the seam stays double-folded, raw edge to the inside.
Layer Pieces Together
Stack the fabric pieces for the inside of the case, with right sides facing and lining up the sides and bottom edges:
- Outside piece
- Large pocket
- Small pocket
Pin the two pieces of ribbon on one side, ends matching up with the edge of the fabric. Pin the pockets and ribbon in the middle a few times. This holds things in place so nothing shifts.
- Place the other outside piece on top, right side down, on top of the other pieces.
With the second outside piece in place, pin around the edges.
- Beginning at the top and leaving a a 3/8-inch seam allowance, sew around the rectangle. Backstitch at the beginning and end of the sewing, leaving a 4-inch opening.
- Trim the corners to reduce fabric bulk, being careful not to cut the stitches. Turn the case right side out and poke the corners into shape with a knitting needle. Remove the pins.
- Open the seams by rolling them between your fingers. Press the open seam allowance so the edge is even. Pin the edges to hold everything in place.
- Working 1/8-inch in from the edge, topstitch around the entire rectangle.
Measure and Mark Pockets
Use a disappearing ink marking pen or ordinary pencil and ruler to lightly mark a vertical line on the pockets at the center of the case. Working from the center out to the edges, mark a vertical line every 2 inches.
Sew along each marked line, stitching carefully to ensure that you end up with straight lines.
For more stability, stitch the middle line all the way up to the top edge. Stitch the rest of the lines just to the edge of the top pocket, and be sure to backstitch at the beginning and end of each line to keep the pockets secure.
For more stability, stitch the middle line all the way up to the top edge. Stitch the rest of the lines just to the edge of the top pocket, backstitching at the beginning and end of each line to secure the pockets.
Now that your case is full of knitting needles, just roll it up so that the end with the ribbon is on the outside. Wrap the ribbon around the bundle once or twice depending on length, then tie it closed.
Ideas to Enhance Your Knitting Needle Case
Use double-pointed knitting needles a lot? Cut the short pocket even shorter for easier access to your dpns. If your sewing machine can take it, you could even add a third pocket.
Mark the size of the needle on each pocket to make it easy to find the one you need. Use rubber stamps and fabric ink, or stitch the numbers with embroidery before you sew the pocket lines.
Embroider your monogram or initials on the second outside piece—the piece placed last, on top of all the others—before assembling the case.
If your sewing machine has decorative stitches, use one to give the pocket stitching a fancier look.