I’ve talked before about how I love to crochet on the move – when I was commuting into London every day, I was always crocheting furiously on the train.
Now I used to get a bit carried away with the projects I took with me sometimes, often working on my favourite WIP whatever it may be – even if it was a king sized blanket! This isn’t quite as practical an approach when you’re leaving for a longer trip – especially if you plan to craft on the aeroplane.
Luckily, I have quite a bit of experience in this area – and as I’m packing for a holiday right now, it seems like a great excuse to duck out of the housework and write a post!
1: Be realistic about yarn requirements
This is my number one tip for a reason! When you’re deciding what to pack, make sure you have a realistic idea of what your holiday will entail. Renting a quiet cabin in the woods? Pack as much yarn as you can get away with. Jam-packed city break? Take enough to see you through your journeys there and back, but maybe don’t take 35 WIPs with you.
The holiday I’m about to go on is a fairly relaxed week, but in a city. The schedule isn’t packed, but we do want to get out and explore a decent amount. I’ll be taking a pair of socks I’m working on, a shawl I’m working on, and a ball of sock yarn I picked up in Barcelona a few months ago to cast on another pair of socks if I finish everything. This is very restrained for me – I’m leaving a lot of WIPs at home – but it feels like the appropriate amount of work to take for the holiday I’m going on.
2: When it comes to kit, be a bit more optimistic
While I do recommend limiting the yarn you take with you on holiday, make sure you’re much more optimistic when it comes to your crafting kit.
There are a couple of reasons for this:
- Hooks, knitting needles, etc. are small! You can get away with taking a good few sizes of each, even if you aren’t taking the yarn to use with them. This allows you to stumble upon a yarn shop, get inspired, and start a new project if needs be.
- There’s nothing worse than being caught short. I would have a meltdown if I got to the end of a sock and didn’t have a needle with me to graft my toes – or if I didn’t have scissors to cut my yarn! I’m on the verge of a panic attack just thinking about it.
3: Leave a little room in your bag
There’s something really special about picking up a ball or two (or ten) of yarn on holiday. I love working with holiday yarn – you’re working your holiday memories into the finished object and it makes it feel extra special.
Don’t go mad leaving room for your new yarn – remember yarn will squish – but make sure you could realistically bring some home if you stumble upon it (or meticulously plan a tour of every craft shop in a ten mile radius).
4: Project bags!
When I’m travelling, I like to keep a bag per project. For this holiday, I will be taking my socks in a gorgeous sock knitting bag I was given as a gift last year (you can pick up similar on Etsy).
The spare yarn and the shawl will be in a shoulder bag from Unravel, which will also hold my hook case, my needle set and my pencil case with my stitch markers, scissors, wool needles and a few other bits. The sock knitting bag will fit into the shoulder bag too, so I can easily cart all my kit around but not end up in a crazy yarn-y mess.
The shoulder bag itself is going in my hand luggage, so that I can easily slip it out to entertain me on the plane.
If this sounds like overkill, believe me – it isn’t! There’s nothing worse than several WIPs getting tangled up together and losing a hook or two in the melee!
5: Check airline restrictions
While I’ve never had an issue with taking any of my crafty stuff on aeroplanes, I would always recommend checking any restrictions before you fly – having anything confiscated would be devastating!
As a general rule, if you take nail scissors or small embroidery scissors instead of big sewing scissors you should be allowed to take them on board – there is usually a restriction on blade length.
Knitting needles and crochet hooks are allowed on most airlines – all of the ones I have flown with. But it’s always worth checking. If you’re worried about your metal needles or hooks, I feel like wooden needles or hooks are less likely to be deemed dangerous (I have no evidence to back this up, but it seems logical!) so maybe consider making the switch if you’re concerned about extra restrictions where you are going.
Even if you have checked before you travel, all it takes is one over-zealous airport official to ignore all the restrictions and confiscate your kit anyway. So I’d say – take your cheap stuff! This isn’t the time to take your hand-carved ebony hooks – save them for crocheting at home.
6: Pack the right projects
I went on holiday with my Sophie’s Universe once. I won’t say I regret it, because I got some lovely pics of her hanging out as a WIP in Florida. But I was in FLORIDA, people! No-one wants to be stuck under a large blanket while sitting by the pool in 100% humidity – it wasn’t fun and I didn’t make a whole lot of progress. She also wasn’t popular on the plane… manhandling an ever-increasing square blanket round after round doesn’t make you many friends when you’re already fighting for an armrest.
This time I’m taking socks – on a small circular needle. The hand movements used to knit them are small, my elbows don’t get too involved and they’re not remotely unwieldy.
I’m also taking a shawl – I don’t plan on knitting this on the plane, but it’s seasonal. I’m expecting it to be a little warmer in Spain than it is here, so I want to be working on something I want to wear at the same time as I finish it.
Stick with small makes which are seasonally appropriate and you’re onto a winner.
7: Relax and enjoy!
There’s something really special about making things when you’re on holiday. Whenever you look at your finished object, you’ll remember making it somewhere exciting and exotic. Working our memories into our makes is what crafting is all about – so do what makes you happy. If that’s reading this, agreeing with the points, and packing your king sized blanket WIP anyway, then DO IT! Do whatever you need to make your holiday crafting as special as possible.
Do you like crafting on holiday? Let me know in the comments!
Until next time,