Whether you knit or crochet there are so many gadgets and fun accessories out there other than yarn. But if you know nothing about fiber arts then you might be feeling clueless about what to gift that special person in your life. There are thousands and thousands of different types of yarn and if you don’t know the fiber, weight, and colors they enjoy then yarn shopping is sure to make your head spin. This is why I am recommending these tried and true accessories for the yarn lover in your life.
I’ll start off with, my husband is really great at coming up with thoughtful gifts and usually goes above and beyond. But he has no clue about yarn so much so this blog post was actually his idea. This is the guide I wish I could send my husband before gift-giving holidays such as Christmas, Birthdays, and Anniversaries. I have included items that range from under $5 to over $200 so no matter what your budget, you’ll find something below. An added bonus, all of these products are on Amazon, perfect for last-minute shopping from your couch.
I actually own almost all of these products and truly love them (or I wouldn’t recommend them). The few products I don’t own, I clearly state that I don’t. I feel very confident about recommending them and have done endless research (YouTube videos, reviews, etc.) to know they are the best.
The majority of the items listed are not craft-specific, but I do have a crochet list with fun hooks at the bottom of this blog post. So even if you know absolutely nothing about yarn crafting, I have tried to include useful information to understand what each product actually is.
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Fiskars Folding Scissors
You might be thinking, really scissors… Yes, I can not rave enough about how much I LOVE these scissors. If your loved one is always crocheting on the go then these are an absolute must. They are compact and completely safe to fold up and bring everywhere with you. I have multiple pairs and even keep one in my diaper bag. I literally never leave the house without them.
A high-quality yarn winder can be a game-changer for any yarn lover. I have this Stanwood one pictured above and it is phenomenal. Super high quality and makes winding my yarn a breeze. For those that don’t craft, a yarn winder is useful to organize your yarn into “cakes” that way you can work out any knots or cuts before you start your project. Also, working out of a cake is much less likely to cause a dreaded knot in the middle of your project. Yes, you can wind your yarn by hand but that takes forever and if working on a larger project no one has time for hand-winding that much yarn. This winder is great because it winds up to 10 oz of yarn at a time. I have also heard really great things about this Knit Picks winder pictured below. It winds smaller cakes (up to 3.5 oz) and is more affordable than the larger Stanwood.
To accompany the yarn winder is this tabletop/amish yarn swift. These are invaluable if your loved one likes to use high-end hand-dyed yarns that come in hanks. It’s basically a spinning device to stretch the yarn out on so it doesn’t get tangled while winding. Before I bought the one below, I used to have my husband hold the yarn around his arms while I wound it. This technique would work ok but I still usually ended up with some knots. If your loved one mostly uses yarn from big box stores that come in skeins then they won’t need a yarn swift.
Once you wind your yarn in cakes it is super convenient to have one of these “Yarn Valets.” They make it super easy to work from the outside of your yarn cake which prevents the frustrating collapse that can happen when working from the center. These are really great if your loved one works on their project usually from the same location (i.e. home). If you knit/crochet in the car or on the go, this gadget won’t be as useful because it needs a tabletop to sit on. I have the super affordable plastic one that’s above and so far it works great for me. I have been eyeing this wooden one below from ChiaoGoo, they’re a really great company so I expect the dispenser to be of excellent quality.
Stylish Project Bag
Let’s face it, we all have at least two WIPs (Works in Progress) at any given moment. This is why having multiple project bags to keep everything organized is essential. This bag is absolutely gorgeous, I don’t have it yet… but it is at the top of my Amazon Wish List. It literally has a pocket for everything and is perfect for traveling. The makers of this bag seemed to have thought of every little detail while also keeping a super stylish look. I can see myself taking this bag to my favorite local coffee shop for an hour of quiet time away from the kids.
Whether your loved one knits or crochets I don’t think you can go wrong with a project bag from Amazon, they literally have styles and colors for every taste. Check out this link to see for yourself!
Having good lighting while knitting or crocheting is so important for your vision. My home is old and has absolutely horrible lighting at night and before I got this light, after a night of crocheting a few hours I would wake up the next day with a headache and my eyes feeling extremely strained. I am also prone to migraines and have found that cool-colored lights don’t trigger migraines like warm-colored lights (in my experience). That being said I probably did 10+ hours of research before purchasing this floor light. Needless to say, I am extremely happy with it and it has allowed me to crochet at night for much longer periods of time than previously able to. I highly recommend this light if your loved one enjoys to craft at night.
Rinse Free Yarn Wash
A lot of yarns out there are indeed machine washable but after spending countless hours handcrafting your masterpiece, hand washing feels like a better option. I was skeptical of this “rinse free” wash and how well it would actually clean and boy was I surprised! I use it to wash all my crocheted wearables and each time it amazes me how dirty the water is after a simple soak. To use this product all you do is fill a sink with just enough cool water to soak your item, mix in the wash and then let it soak! After, I gently wring out the excess water and lay the item flat to dry. The smell is incredible (yuzu is my favorite) and you only use 1 teaspoon so the bottle will literally last forever. So if your loved one is always making wearables like socks, sweaters, hats, scarves, wraps, etc. then you can’t go wrong with a rinse-free yarn wash.
And for washing on the go, they make these super convenient 5 pack of travel-sized portions. They also work great for trying out a variety of scents.
This one can be very controversial… Some people think using a knitting machine is cheating. I understand but at the same time, you are still hand cranking and machine. I really love to make hats as gifts and donate hats to those less fortunate. With my Addi Knitting Machine, last Christmas I was able to make around 30 hats and headbands for family and friends and an additional 30 hats for the homeless. If I crocheted that many it would have literally taken me all year.
If your loved one really enjoys crafting for selling at markets or for charity, a knitting machine is a true game changer! There are several different-sized machines and different brands. For the luxury version, I recommend the Addi King Sized Machine (pictured above). That’s what I personally have and love! There are also really great budget options available as well. From what I have seen on YouTube, there are a bunch of different brands that make this exact same pink and white machine that are exactly the same. With 48 pins the Sentro is slightly larger than the Addi King Size but will also make awesome hats!
If you do end up getting a knitting machine, be sure to check out my other blog post where I go over the best and worst yarns for your knitting machine.
This is another super inexpensive item that is invaluable to have many of. I am constantly misplacing my tape measure and find myself wasting 5 minutes sifting through my various project bags looking for it. So if you’re looking to bundle a few small items together or a stocking stuffer, throw in a tape measure!
It can be so quick to amass a large stash of yarn. We all have the best intentions when purchasing and often have a specific project in mind for each yarn. But life happens and we don’t always get to that project in a timely manner. I have found the more organized my stash is the more likely I am to actually make something with the yarn I already own. This is why I recommend a Yarn Journal. I keep all my yarn stored away in bags and a journal allows me to document everything I have and where each yarn is stored. So whenever I find a pattern or project idea then I can pull out my journal and see all of my yarn. There are digital ways to do this as well (such as Ravelry), but there’s just something special about writing things down.
High Quality Lotion
It is amazing how fast your hands will dry out after a long session of crocheting or knitting. This is why a high-quality amazing-smelling lotion is a perfect addition to a yarn-filled gift basket. For luxurious fragrances, I really love the Caldrea brand of lotions. For those unfamiliar with Caldrea, you probably have heard about their other brand Mrs. Meyers. Caldrea is like the sophisticated big sister to Mrs. Meyers. I love all their products and the Sea Salt Neroli is my all-time favorite. As a bonus, they also have candles as well! A matching candle and lotion are the perfect combo for a relaxing night of yarning.
Checking your gauge is sooooo important when knitting or crocheting. For those unfamiliar, patterns almost always list a gauge that tells you how many stitches you should have in a certain number of inches. For example, 14 stitches wide x 12 rows = 3″ x 3″. If your gauge is off then your project won’t turn out the correct size which is crucial when making garments. If your gauge is off you can easily adjust your hook or needle size to correct it. You can always use a tape measure to check gauge but I find it to be a lot easier to use a gauge ruler. There are hundreds of different sizes and varieties of them but they all are basically a ruler with a cutout section in the center that you put over your project to count how many stitches. These make it easier to count 1/2 stitches than a tape measure. 1/2 a stitch might not seem like a big deal but when you’re making a sweater and it’s 1/2 a stitch smaller every 3 inches then your sweater is not going to fit the way you want it to. When I first started, I never checked my gauge until I learned the hard way. After making a gorgeous cardigan, it ended up being way too big for me and I basically wasted countless hours making something I was never going to wear.
This gauge ruler is super cool because it also allows you to check the size of any mystery crochet hooks or knitting needles you may have. And it also has a yarn cutter!
I held out on buying these for a long time because I just didn’t want to spend extra money that I could spend instead on yarn. So for years, I used to use my children’s foam play tiles instead with some basic t-pins. This worked ok for years but got incredibly annoying because the tiles had letter cutouts in the center that would inevitably fall out and collapse the whole mat every time I had to move the project. Then, I recently decided to finally buy these Knit IQ blocking mats and have been unbelievably happy ever since. Your loved one may already have a set but these are literally amazing and if they are just getting started with making wearables they may not have a set of blocking mats.
For those unfamiliar with what I am even talking about, “blocking” is an important finishing step after completing many projects. A lot of garment projects have a tendency to curl and so after you are done, it is important to either wash or steam your item, lay it out on these mats to the appropriate size, and then pin it in place. Allowing your project to dry in the appropriate size/shape ensures you have the showstopping appearance intended for your hand-crafted work. Certain techniques (like tunisian crochet or lacey details) and yarns have a tendency to curl more than others so blocking can be a true life saver for your hard work.
Now that I have my super fancy blocking mats, these Knitters Pride Knit Blockers are next on my list. I’ve seen them used countless times on YouTube blocking tutorials and they seem amazing! Instead of using a million tiny t-pins to hold your work in place these much larger blockers can help hold together an entire section at a time. So if my husband is reading this “hint hint” I want these. 🙂
This is another small item that I feel like I can never have enough of. I like to keep a few in all my project bags but still can never find them. I used to use the locking variety but always ending up having to open them one-handed or with my mouth which can be super annoying. When I found these they quickly became a game-changer. They don’t lock but the round design makes it super quick to slide in the necessary stitch.
If you don’t know what stitch markers are, they are a really useful/important way to designate certain stitches or rows. A lot of patterns will tell you to mark certain places on your project for reference. I use them all the time to mark the progress made on things like blankets. I like to mark where I started each day to challenge myself to complete more than I did the previous day.
I don’t personally knit but what I know about knitting is there are so many different types and styles of needles that are very specific to the user’s preference and the project. This is why I am not going to recommend purchasing knitting needles as a gift. Whereas crochet hooks are pretty universal, they may vary in tip shape or grip but are pretty straightforward. Those that have been crocheting for many years may have more of a preference in the tip shape or material of the hooks but these two sets I am mentioning are tried and true favorites of mine.
Prym Crochet Hook Set
I recently discovered these hooks at my local Michaels and they are incredible! Super lightweight, they glide through yarn like butter. They remind me a lot of the super high-end Furls hooks but at a fraction of the cost. Any crocheter would love to have these hooks in their collection. This set is great because it includes a lot of commonly used hook sizes.
Clover Armour Hook Set
I love these hooks as well! The metal tips make them much more substantial and they are a high-class set of hooks for beginners. I bought mine one at a time which ended up being pretty expensive compared to this handy set.
Thank you so much for checking out my guide. If you enjoy knitting or crocheting, let me know in the comments if there are any other tools you can’t live without!