Car journeys as a passenger have the ability of being, well, boring. Especially travelling long distances as the journey usually takes you down long monotonous motorways, only becoming interesting when you get closer to your destination. But taking your knitting is not always going to be smooth activity for you. I’ve compiled a list of useful tips I use myself when preparing for a long journey that lead to happy knitting.
1. Your Needle Choice
Metal needles have a tendency to be slippery. You know that void underneath the car seat or down by the handbrake? Car knitting is a prime opportunity for your slippery needles to perform the disappearing magic trick! Choose stickier needles such as wood if you are still new to car knitting. Also try not to choose a pattern than has too many needle size changes, maybe one or two at the most. The space available to you in a car is much more limited than your home.
2. Make Something Familiar
This is not the time to make your first ever sock or to learn brioche. And it probably isn’t a good time to do a steek, even if you are a seasoned pro. If you regularly make socks then make a sock. If you make a shawl, then make a shawl. I love making shawls!
3. Choose a Simple Pattern
Car sickness affects a pretty significant number of people when you are focusing entirely on something close and inside the car. I’m one of them! If you need to look at your project the entire time because you’ve chosen something complex such as lace or fair isle, then you won’t be knitting for long. Garter stitch and stocking stitch is a safe bet, and you can still include colour in the form of stripes.
4. Pre-driving Read Through
We are always told to read through your pattern before you knit it. Though I’m guilty of not doing this. But for car knitting, you really, really should. I also recommend browsing other finished objects on sites such as Ravelry for the pattern you are going to make. This will help you understand the construction and form of what you are going to make. Trying to get the internet on your phone whilst on the M3 to see if you are doing it right is unlikely to be successful. Reading through will also help you to understand what notions you need to take with you. After all, 3 hours down the road no one is going to turn around for a stitch marker!
5. When and When Not To Knit
Roads have a tendency to be bumpy and uneven. Country lanes are not a good time to be knitting. Lots of bends, big bumps, and sudden breaking are all prime opportunities for a naughty stitch to drop off and ladder! Roadworks and when you are getting close to your destination are also not great times for knitting. Your driver is likely to be expecting you to help look out for signs, and do you really want to fail at fitting in one last row? So really this leaves motorways and dual carriageways as your prime knitting opportunities. They are monotonous so you are unlikely to be having a thrilling game of “I spy” or even playing pub cricket. And since you are knitting without looking you can still have a conversation with your chauffeur!
And one bonus tip. Unless they are asleep, don’t knit when travelling with children.
If you want to sum up all of these points into one easy to remember theme: knit something similar to what you have made before. I know this sounds unadventurous, but you will have plenty of adventures where ever it is you have just spent all that time travelling to!
Those are my tips. Now it’s your turn to share your tips in the comments to help others!
Happy Crafting and Travelling!