How to Sew a Knitting Needle Holder for Circular Needles


I’ve tried a bunch of different ways to organize my circular knitting needles and have never been completely happy. My mom just gave me the rest of her knitting supplies which caused my circular needles to explode out of their most recent not-quite-good-enough configuration which precipitated some emergency sewing of a circular knitting needle holder as I’ve been working hard to get my studio more organized, not less! I really like the solution I came up with. It’s pretty similar to my double-point knitting needle holder with a slightly different configuration. I used some treasured fabric that I bought in Japan when I was in high school – about time I used it!


To make the circular knitting needle holder you need:

  • 2 rectangles of fabric
  • 2 pieces of ribbon
  • 2 zippers longer than the length of your fabric
  • tailors chalk (I love chaco liners)
  • straight edge


Cut 2 rectangles of fabric that are the same size. My rectangles were ~20″x18″ and nicely fit 12 pockets for different sizes of needles (from US 1 – US 11). The exact size doesn’t really matter, but I wouldn’t go a whole lot smaller (unless you reduce the number of pockets) as it would get to hard to get the needles in and out of their pockets. Finish all of the edges of your fabric. (I serged the edges that weren’t already finished with a narrow hem).


Sew the zippers to the long edges of one of your pieces of fabric. Put the zippers right sides against the right side of the fabric. I like to have the zipper start on the same end of each side of the holder. Your zipper should hang off of each end of your fabric but it doesn’t matter how much. For the whole project I use a 1/4″ seam allowance.


Sew the other rectangle of fabric with the right sides together to the other side of the zipper.


Sew the non-zipper sides of your fabric together (with right sides together), securing the end of  your zipper by sewing over the end of the zipper (or if using a metal zipper, sewing up right next to the zipper).


Before you sew the final side of your rectangle together, you want to pin your ribbons so that their ends will be caught in the seam allowance. The ribbon should be about 1/4″ down the length of the side. You also MUST make sure that you unzip your zipper a bit so that the zipper toggle is on the body side of the seam. (If you don’t unzip it a bit you will sew the rectangle all the way closed with no way to use the zippers!)


Cut off the excess zipper length from all ends.


Turn the rectangle right sides out and press it flat. Using your chalk and a straight edge, mark your stitch lines that you will use to create the pockets. You must put one line lengthwise down the middle of the pocket. The number of lines you stitch widthwise will determine how many pockets you have. My pockets were 3″ wide which is a good conservative size but I wouldn’t recommend going any smaller or you will have a hard time getting the needles in and out. Stitch on top of the chalked lines.


Mark your pockets with sizes. I used the embroidered numbers built into my sewing machine but considered using permanent marker or hand embroidering.


Secure the ends of your zippers with a backtack.


You’re done! Fill it full of your needles.


To close it up, fold it in half lengthwise…


…then roll it up and tie it closed with the ribbon.


At the same time. I made another needle holder for straight needles. I found that the one I had made in the past wasn’t working because my larger size needles didn’t fit into the pockets. So I made a new one where I increased the size of the pockets from 1″ wide for size 1 needles to 3″ wide for size 17 needles.


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