Monday, February 26, 2007

knitting needle roll tutorial.

there are more pictures here of the Needle Roll to End All Needle Rolls (I call it that because it has space for more stuff than I even own).

this tutorial is now illustrated, with a different, second needle roll i made.

i've also designed this pattern in inches, despite my metric heritage. sorry. you'll cope.

- I actually cheated, and pieced together lining fabric to pretty fabric where it was covered by another pocket. If you want to do that, remember when cutting each piece to add seam allowance.
- Also, you should iron each piece after you sew it, every time. It'll look crisper, I promise. And this comes from a girl who hates ironing.
- A one inch wide pocket will hold a pair of straight needles (even 10mm thick ones!), a set of dpns up to about 6mm or so, or a few crochet hooks. A two inch wide pocket is good for circular needles up to about 5mm, needle gauges, a small set of scissors. Three inch wide pockets are needed for the largest circulars. You can redesign the number of pockets you have of each width according to what you own, if you want.

Fabric Quantities
5 fat quarters of printed fabric
20" cut from the roll of the thinnest batting you can find
25" cut from the roll of plain cotton to line the pockets
1 yard of ribbon

Cut Pieces
Outer (pretty fabric): 17 6/8" x 20 2/8"
Inner (pretty fabric): 17 6/8" x 20 2/8"
Pocket 1 (cut one of pretty fabric and one of lining): 17 6/8" x 11 3/8"
Pocket 2 (cut one of pretty fabric and one of lining): 17 6/8" x 7 7/8"
Pocket 3 (cut one of pretty fabric and one of lining): 17 6/8" x 6 3/8"
Batting: 17 6/8" x 20 2/8"

1) If you want to applique anything to the outer, do it now.
2) With right sides facing, sew each pocket to its lining along the top of the pocket. Turn and press.

3) Zig-zag down each side of each pocket, sewing the lining and the pretty fabric together.
4) Zig-zag around the outer and the inner.
5) Place the three pockets on top of each other, right sides out and bottom edges aligning.
6) Measure in 7/8" from the left-hand edge of the pockets, and rule a vertical line with chalk. Continue to mark chalk lines at one inch intervals down the right side of all three pockets. There will be 7/8" margin at the right-hand side too.

7) Skipping the first chalk line, mentally assign each line a letter, A to O, from left to right. There will also be one chalk line at the end that remains un-lettered. Ignore these first and last chalklines. They will be sewn down when you sew the inner to the outer.
8) Take Pocket 1 and place it against the inner (pocket lining against right side of inner), with bottom edges aligning. Sew down columns A, C, E, and G from the top edge of the pocket to the bottom. Sew back and forth at each end to secure the stitches.
9) Take Pocket 2 and place it over Pocket 1, lining against right side. Sew down columns I, K, L, M and O, from the top of Pocket 1 to the bottom edge (where everything's aligned, remember) securing at each end. Here's what it looks like once the columns on pocket 1 are sewn, and you're up to pocket 2.

10) Take Pocket 3, place it over Pocket 2. Sew down columns B, D, F, H, J and N from the top of Pocket 1 to the bottom edge, securing stitching at each end.
11) Pin together the inner with pockets and the outer, right sides facing. Pin batting to wrong side of outer.
12) Press top edge of inner and top edge of out/ batting down half an inch, wrong side against wrong side (in this picture, the batting would be up against the wrong side of the green fabric. i ran out of batting, so cheated a little with this roll).

13) Sew around the sides and bottom.
14) Turn and press. There should be no raw edge along the top, it's already been pressed down.
15) Top stitch around all four edges 3/8" from the edge. This look pretty and will sew down the open top flap.
16) Fold the top 2" of the needle roll down towards the pockets to make the inside flap. Topstitch 3/8" from the fold to secure the flap (that's the stitching on the left-hand side in this illustration).

17) Fold the ribbon in half, and stitch it down along the topstitching line of one side of the needle roll. Seal the cut ends with a lighter or clear nail polish.

Ta-da! you have needle roll!

edit: I've had to disable comments because this post was being spammed to death. It's a pity, as I loved seeing other people's knitting needle rolls. Sorry.


Scribbles & Bits said...

This is an awesome tutorial! Thanks! I keep promising myself I'm going to make one. I even have the perfect fabric. Alas, I seem to lack the gumption.

lupinbunny said...

oh good! i hope you can manage my picture-less directions. when i make another (for my mum. shh! it's a surprise!) i'll take photos as i go.

~ Teresa ~ said...

I think that you should sell these! Have you thought about it?

lupinbunny said...

no teresa i had not... god. it's an idea though.
time more an issue than anything else.

but, damn! i reckon the local Fancy Pants yarn store might take 'em... and there's always etsy...

thankyou so much for the idea!

eve said...

Hi there!

I have just started a blog and am trying to get lots of links to interesting tutorials together and will also try them out and write reviews.

I have placed a links to this tutorial, I hope that's ok.

It's still a little empty because this blog is only 1 week old so do pop by in the future.

Oh and if you want to put a link up for me you are very welcome.

Thanks Eve

GothamMom said...

I feel like an idiot. Can you walk me through the resoning of steps 8, 9, and 10? Why sew the alternate marked lines, but not all of them?

Thank you!

lupinbunny said...

The pockets on the front layers are sometimes two or even three inches wide, not a single inch. The first pockets has dividers at one inch intervals. If you sewed down every line on the first pocket, you'd be re-sewing down the line when you added the second and third pockets (which is just a waste of thread and liable to get wonky/ messy looking). So for the first pocket you are only sewing down the lines that won't be sewn down when you add the second or third pocket; and when you add the second pocket you are only sewing down the lines that won't be sewn down when you add the third pocket.

GothamMom said...


Thank you, can you tell I have been working too hard this week?

Thanks again.

Anonymous said...

Looks great! Any chance of posting a pic in the tutorial of the finished product open with some needles inside? Thanks. :)

Kris said...

I love this pattern you came up with. But I'm just having a little trouble... in step 4, you say to 'zigzag around the outer and the inner' - do you mean to attach the outer fabric to the inner fabric? I didn't think they were sewn together until step 13. By the way, why zigzag instead of a straight stitch? In case you can't tell, I'm a real newbie to sewing. Thanks!

9crafty11 said...

This is a great & easy tutorial. I have made one

This was for my SIL, & I like it so much am making one for myself! Thanks Julia

Lesley said...

Just wonderful, just what I needed to make for a friend. Thank you a lovely tutorial!!

Momma said...

I think seeing the finished product using the fabrics from the tutorial would help me. I'm having a hard time following -- but I'm new to this!

Anonymous said...

great pattern! It was so clear. I completed my knitting needle roll and I am ridiculously proud of it. There are photos on my blog here:
I would have more needles but I have a few works in progress. Eep! However, lets not talk about that.
Thanks for sharing the pattern!

Anonymous said...

I've linked to his tutorial from in one of my reviews:

Dorothy said...

I also am having trouble understanding the line "zigzag inner and outer" what are you referring to? Thank you for posting tutorial, all other instructions are easy to understand upon reading them first before I get started, just struggling with that one line.

Alicia Hart said...

You should definately sell this. It is so adorable. I have looked on ebay and this one if by far, the best one I've seen. Thanks for sharing the idea. I thinbk if I can get my head around your specific directions I should be able to pull this would be much better if I could send said check in the mail. LOL

Hootie said...


Your fabric is great! What a handy, and cute roll. :)

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Valerie said...

Thank you for the tutorial, I've made one here:



Kathy said...

Thank you for the inspiration. I am attempting to make this for a gift and am having some trouble, too, understanding the directions to zig zag around the outer and inner. Can you please provide more details of what to zig zag around? Thank you.

Maura said...

Thank you for the tutorial! I added a zippered pocket in the top flap for small items. I have pictures of mine on my Ravelry page:

And to those who are asking about the zig-zagging, I'm not positive about this, but I think it's just to keep the edges of the fabric from fraying. You re-sew over it again when you sew the outer and inner together, so you don't HAVE to zig-zag, but it's nice not to have the edges of the fabric fraying.

Julie said...

Thank you so much for posting this. I am very happy with my finished product. I made the mistake of using the same fabric for all, so it was difficult to see the pockets. I randomly decided to zigzag some contrasting ribbon along the top of the pockets and it looks great. Next time I make one, I'll use different fabric for each pocket.

Anonymous said...

This tutorial is great. I made this for my mum a couple of christmases ago, and I'm making one for me.