Crafty Travel

a knitted hat with pompomsCrafting is one of my favorite things. I love knitting, sewing, papercrafts, and just making stuff in general. Pre-baby, I spent many hours learning and honing new crafts. But as a full time working mom, not to mention a road warriorette, there just aren’t nearly enough hours in the day. Finding time to get my real job work and my blog work done is hard enough (not to mention little things like sleeping and eating), much less extra time for knitting. Because of this, I’m getting very creative about carving out small pockets of time for knitting and other crafts. Even though traveling for work definitely makes me busier, it also allows me some down time I wouldn’t otherwise have. There is almost always a little extra time in an airport, after meetings in the hotel, or even while flying to get my craft on.

Obviously, it’s not always practical to get out your knitting needles or sewing kit, like when you’re on a small plane or sitting in the middle seat. But I take my knitting on every trip, and nearly always find a chance to get it out and knit a few rows. So far, small, quick projects like hats have been easiest to do because they don’t take up much space, plus I like the feeling of accomplishment after a short time. I’ve also been focusing on projects that don’t need a pattern. But now that winter is basically over here in Texas (and winding down elsewhere) the need for knitted hats is waning. I’m wondering if I should branch out and do something more complicated. It’s just that other types of crafts, such as sewing or paper crafting, seem so cumbersome, and keeping to a knitting or crochet pattern when working only in short bursts is asking for mistakes. (Pictured: a recently completed project, a hat for my baby. And yes, it is super cute on him 🙂 )

(If you’re wondering what the rules are about travel and knitting, check out my post answering that very question.)

So, Readers, what’s your advice? Do you craft on the road? If so, what do you do? Do you stick to simple projects or do you go for more complicated stuff?


  1. I am a knitter and I travel fairly often for work and family. I always have a small knitting project with me, whether it is travel by plane, train, or automobile (and I’m not the driver). It’s either a relatively simple scarf project in a lightweight yarn, or a sock project. Sweater and bulky scarf projects never travel by plane or train – they take up too much precious space. I’d also note that just because the weather is getting warmer doesn’t mean you shouldn’t knit – just think of getting ahead on your Christmas presents or baby’s wardrobe for next winter.

  2. I have an infant/toddler classroom and someone
    very talented knitted over a plastic (dumbbell-shaped) rattle and gave it to our classroom. The children love it! Just an idea for your baby – let me know if you want a picture of it.

  3. Back when I had the time and I was scrapbooking a lot, I brought my scrapbook supplies. I planned out the pages in advance, put everything in little kits and assembled on the plane.

    No worries on trimming photos since a paper trimmer is small and there’s barely a blade.

    I’ve also knitted on the plane using circular needles.

  4. I do cross-stitch in airports and planes. Usually only a small piece though. The thing that holds the table in the upright position is very handy for putting the graph in. Since we still can’t bring scissors on planes in Australia, I use a Clover cutting thingie on a necklace or a dental floss container to trim the ends.

  5. I would suggest socks because if you just get them cast on you have 7 inches before you start the pattern in rib stich. You can either do them on dpn’s or on circular needles. I prefer two 24″ size two circs. Because with the pattern I use you cast on 64 stiches with 32 on each circular needle. The stiches for the heel are all on one needle. You don’t need to look at the pattern for the first part of the heel flap. After you’ve done it once you will remember.

    The other project that I would consider taking with me are small 5 gram packages of sock yarn so I could make additional squares for my sock yarn mitered square blankie. With this project you can get two square out of each 5 gram mini skein of sock yarn. A quart size ziplock bag will contain enough sock yarn bundles to make about 30 squares and hold your size two needles. Its as portable as you get. I always have a ziplock baggie of sock yarn in my purse with two dpn’s to knit my squares.

  6. I do decoupage, which is SO not plane friendly, what with scissors and liquid glue/varnish. If you like to knit, what about some crochet for a change? There’s less elbow action to touch anyone else, and the supplies are pretty tiny. My mum’s been making some tiny hedgehog toys that have gone down really well, and would be lovely for your babe.

  7. I’m a knitter also and like bringing socks. I’ve also done many washcloths -easy since I don’t need a pattern. I also crocheted about 30 lace snowflakes as Christmas presents. Small projects are so great for travel!

  8. I also bring one skein to make a hat. It keeps me from getting stabby while in security lines.

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