circular needle storage

Hello everyone, and happy new year!

The title of this post is probably not one to start your heart a’ racing . . . and happily its not often I get evangelical about, um, “storage solutions”, but I am so very pleased with my new super-organised circular needles I thought I’d show you what I’ve done.


These wee bags are generally known as fishing wallets or rig wallets. I was introduced to them by Mel (who is the complete opposite of me – ie – exceedingly neat and organised) and they are ideal for arranging and storing your circular needles.


As you can see, the wallets contain separate ziplock transparent compartments into which needles of different sizes can be placed.


The small black wallet has 8 compartments and is great for storing the tiny 20cm needles that I use for knitting sleeves and socks.


The medium-sized green wallet has 10 compartments secured on a ring binder, making them easy to move, rearrange, or add to when you suddenly find yourself with an excess of 2.75 mm needles.


. . .and the larger wallet contains 20 fairly generous compartments, which means I have some spare for future additions. As you can see, I’ve written the needle size and length on the compartment with a sharpie — ye gods — the joy of actually being able to find a needle! May I never gripe of the whereabouts of all the 3.25mm needles again!


The larger wallet also has a compartment at the back into which the smaller can be placed. Bags within bags!


This neat container has completely resolved the unholy mess of wires and envelopes which formerly occupied a corner of my studio. Now if I could actually just put stuff away all would be well.

You can easily find these rig wallets under their brand names on Ebay or various online fishing stores. The small one costs under £3, the medium around £7 and with a bit of searching you can find the larger, more durable, dual-compartmented bag for under £20.

Have a lovely Sunday. I’m off to take down the decorations.

59 thoughts on “circular needle storage

  1. Well I can tell you, Kate, it did start my heart racing! What an eternal problem and bother circular needles are… now I just have to find a suitable translation and place to find all this equipment in France!

  2. Thank you so much for this brilliant idea!! For ages I’ve wanted to find a solution to the tangled mess that my circular needles always seem to get themselves into – I am now going straight to ebay to order some wallets. Thanks again [and also to Mel] x

  3. You’re so right that now the real challenge is to use your organizer!!! I always say I’m very good at getting organized…it’s the follow through that does me in. Good work to start the new year off!

  4. Thank you for this! I am tired of my present system for circular needles and didn’t know about these bags. I have just acquired an adjustable plastic cylinder designed for artists brushes to protect my bamboo needles when travelling.

  5. A very welcome post to start the year, my needles have been driving me round the bend! Off at once to acquire some of these. Thank you so much!

  6. Here’s to a well-organised & tangle-free New Year! I just wanted to comment on the lovely picture of swimmers in the background, it caught my eye ;)

  7. Wow – That is such a simple/brilliant idea, I have my circular needles just loitering in a wicker basket. If I needed one, I would approach with trepidation and hope for the best – this idea is well worth posting about! Thank you x

  8. Ah storage! I made a little fabric flip book for my circulars some years ago. It’s ever so neat when I actually put the needles in it.

    Alas, I am awful at putting them away. Every month or so, when all the 3.25mm tips and 40cm cords have ‘vanished’ I sit down and tidy them away again. Ooooh, so neat, easy to find, this time I’ll put them away. Yeah, of course.

  9. I have been using one from Bass Pro Shop in the US. It is a brilliant solution. They are also very inexpensive.

    1. Great minds thinking alike…I got one at Bass Pro Shop here in Nashville, with two separate large compartments. Now all my wooden & bamboo circs are on one side, with my metal ones on the other. Super neat, easy to carry and pretty much weather-proof.

  10. After the “back-to-school” rush, you can usually find plastic pencil pouches meant to go in three-ring binders on clearance. One year I bought a bunch of those, and a binder. The plastic is sturdy, and it has held up a long time.

  11. It’s a brilliant idea, but as I suffer from an ability to return things to their rightful place I am not sure it would work for me…

  12. Must go have a look in the fishing supply store…right after this blizzard passes…looks like this would work better than the 3 ring binder I’m currently using! Thanks Kate!

  13. Excellent! Mine are just looped on a series of hooks on one of the shelves in my work-room (oh, how I like the sound of that – for ‘work-room’ read ‘re-possessed bedroom of last chick to fly the nest’!) – but I really do like this idea of storage! I will certainly be looking into getting a ‘system’ in place very soon!

    Thanks for sharing, Kate! :-)

    1. Oh, if only I could get my chick-a-dee to fly! Her bedroom has a big closet, two bright windows, and would be a fabulous craft room if there weren’t “somebody” living in it!

  14. I’ve been using an accordion file folder (which you can find pretty much anywhere in the office supplies), but it needs to be replaced soon as the closure is getting worn out. This seems like an interesting option!

  15. Fishing tackle to the rescue again! A few years ago, I read about the idea of using a fishing line meter to count yards/metres left in a skein of yarn while re-winding.

  16. What a fabulous idea! I rushed to read this when I saw the title, as this is a big problem for me and I’m so fed up with them getting all tangled up or not being able to find the size I want easily. I’m going to get me one of those! Thanks so much!

  17. I’m so delighted with this idea and its come at just the right moment, so I immediately got onto ebay and ordered one! The year is young and with it I’m full of good intentions to keep my needles in order from now on! Thank you Kate!

  18. I have a lovely cloth bag for my needles, but if they fall I’ll have to measure them all. I love the organic feel of my system but I can see the big advantage of ziplocks.
    Thank you for sharing!
    And Happy 2014!

  19. after looking at these wallets, I realized I have CD case with the same plastic sleeves in a roomy zippered case. Got it at a yard sale. it’s fabulous, thank you Kate for the great idea!

  20. you’ll be enchanted to know that they are referred to as “worm bags” here in the US. This is exactly what I need and I just spent too much on an official circular case. May have to look for a worm bag too.

  21. Great of you to share a solution so many need! I got tired of it awhile ago and got a standard 3 ring binder and a bunch of standard paper sized zippered pouches. Also got a set of index dividers so I can write the size on that. I can leave the needles in there original pouches that have the length written on them. I have an embarassing amount of needles and I was afraid I’d run out of space with some smaller cases.

    The tackle/worm/rig wallets are a more portable size. PLUS, for some reason, I just love that the small ones fit in the large one.

  22. I use a toiletries bag to store mine, in their original sleeves, ‘filed’ in mm order. The plan is that they are returned to their original packaging when not in use. But, as wont to happen with plans … most of the time the needles get stuffed, loose, into the bag, with the intention of organising them at some future point. Sometimes, I even do that! My trusty needle-gauge is my greatest friend!

    1. This is why I currently own three (3!) such needle gauges, to have them wherever my needles are stored. Oh and at last count I found 4 tape measures, 3 tins of stitch markers, and two of T-pins.

  23. i love storage – I have so many boxes and tins …… some of them even have contents labels on them! And of course (some of) my knitting needles are in made-to-measure fabric holders – made from wonderful fabric from the much missed Hinnegan’s of Selkirk.

  24. You’re a genius! I’ve spent the past couple of weeks trying to think how to store my circular needles and now you’ve answered my prayers. Thank you so much for sharing this with us. .

  25. A perfect blog, Kate! Although I don’t have many circular needles (I much prefer double pointed), your blog is the reminder I need to get organised so that I don’t waste so much time hunting for things.

  26. I went to the dollar store and bought pencil cases that were made out of a tough material with a zipper. I labeled them 0 to 15 and one for tools. I used a large circular ring to attach them together through the top and bottom grommet.

  27. I had looked into this sort of system several years ago but didn’t adopt it as I didn’t know how easy it would be for me to expand without special order and I didn’t know how it would be to store on my bookshelves. It did inspire me, I use several ring binders and pencil pouches from the discount store with clear fronts and each labeled with the needle size. I store all things of that size in the pouch, dpns, tips, circs, crochet hooks. Interchangeable cables have their own pouch and I have another for the tapestry needles that multiply and disappear. I have one binder for my commonly used sizes (2mm-3.75mm) and others for the rest of my needle and hook collection. I love how organized it is and I’m amazed how effective it has stayed for a few years. I actually look forward to putting needles away (now if I could just do something about the rest of my office..) Enjoy in health and happiness!

  28. I loved this idea so much that I ordered these CD storage sheets online. I also used small bits of index cards for length and size identification. I store them in a perfectly sized plastic box. I must admit it was quite an embarrassment for me to discover that I have so many duplicates. Thank you so much for a really brilliant idea!

  29. Our LYS has these and sells the extra pages to go in it; it’s embroidered with the store’s name. It’s a nice way to do it.

  30. Thank you for this idea. At the moment I use a small CD case for my circulars but I don’t like the way the points poke out by the corner of the zip. I had been thinking of buying a larger CD case (with 2 pockets per page) and keeping a note of the needle sizes in the top pockets. But I think that using zipped bags within the storage case is a much better idea. I would never have thought of looking at fishing equipment for a solution, so thank you!

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About Kate Davies

writer, designer and creator of Buachaille (100% Scottish wool)