Some time ago, I started keeping all the yarn labels for my projects so that I could remember which yarn I used. Rather than stuffing them in a drawer, I wanted to organize them somehow. I found this simple journal and started stapling the yarn labels onto the pages.
On the margins, I jotted down the name of the project and the date. At some point, I started including a scrap of yarn with the label so that I could remember what the yarn looked and felt like. The sample on the left page below is what I used to make a pair of baby booties, including the pretty ribbon to tie them together. The sample on the right was a souvenir yarn from Romni Wools in Toronto. It’s patiently waiting for the right project.
The yarns below went into making a thick cabled scarf for my husband, a racy striped garter stitch scarf, a cabled hat and washcloths.
I started this knitting notebook long before it occurred to me to download an app or start a blog. Both of those are good memory joggers. I do keep my Vogue Knitting app updated but there’s nothing like being able to touch and feel the yarn between my fingers. Modern technology still can’t replace the tactile experience.
Do you keep yarn samples? How do you organize them?
88 thoughts on “My Knitting Notebook”
What a great idea Veronica! I’ve never kept labels or even snippets of the yarn and some times it would have come in handy. Thanks for sharing your idea!
Glad you liked it. I wish I had kept the actual yarn samples earlier, especially for items I’ve long given away.
I’ve got to do this! What a great idea. My yarn stash is chaotic and as I often deviate from patterns, it would be great to record my mistakes and happy outcomes!
It has come in handy to see quick notes on the page. Glad you liked it.
I was just wishing I was this organized this morning, as I was putting on my favorite hand-knit socks and wondering what this wonderful yarn was… Kicking myself lightly with a well-socked foot…
That’s a good idea. Making my own patterns I make a skecth for every project and there a pin a sample of the yarn I’ll use. All my sketches are collected in a ring binder. I also have a notebook (well to be true many notebooks now) were I write the “pattern”. It’s very useful especially when I want to use once again the same pattern or make some variation.
Great idea, especially for your patterns. You should show us your notebook on your blog sometime.
This is a really good idea. Love your knitting notebook. Right now I have mine stuffed into a bag with the lables.
I used to just stuff the labels in the back and one day it just occurred to me to staple them on the pages. It’s not always very neat but it does the trick.
I try to keep my Ravelry Stash organized, but ball bands, yarn samples – nah. And I know the day will come when I wish I had…. Especially my handspun I don’t get around to labelling or detailing at all, plant dyed so far yes.
I was concerned about saving too much stuff but the notebook size forces me to just use a snippet of yarn. I still have many pages to go before I fill it and the notebook easily stores anywhere.
What a fantastic idea. I agree that technology can’t replace the touchy feely experience.
Absolutely! I wish I had started keeping yarn samples earlier and not just the labels.
Lovely! I had to re-knit a jumper this year for someone and had notes and bits an pieces, no note about which needle size I used for the entire jumper! So now I have made form that I download and stick on an index card and I fill in every thinkable detail about my swatch and then store it with the label. Doesn’t look as beautiful, but works well.
I’ve actually started using index cards for notes as well. They are so easy to carry around. I then just started stapling the cards with the yarn label and sample. One of those index card boxes or better yet, a pretty recipe card box could hold all your cards in one place!
I am working in my fifth knitting journal. I usually keep yarn scraps, stitching notes and sometimes a summary of what I liked about a project, or didn’t like. Now I’ll hunt down some of the labels (stuffed in a basket somewhere) and add them to the pages. Although I keep most of the same information in Ravelry, I agree with you. I enjoy paging through old journals.
I like your journal aspect. I imagine it’s like rereading a little story about everything you’ve knitted. I may have to borrow your idea and add notes to my pages. Thanks!
Yes, I do the same thing! I have my knitting notebook where I keep yarn labels, samples and a note of cost and where it came from. It’s great to be able to look back on what projects I have done and what adjustments I have made to patterns, etc
Yeah! Show us your notebook sometime. I’d love to see it!
I have a notebook like this, but this year I’ve been really slack about keeping it up dated. You’ve inspired me to dig it out and start again.
I’m glad! Perhaps you can post about your journal sometime. You might give others some ideas.
What a terrific idea! I always punch a hole in the label of a yarn I’ve never used before and tie a scrap of yarn through the hole, but then I stuff the labels in a little tin–not quite so organized as your notebook!
Hmmm, I also like the tin idea.
What a great idea, and you have created a thing of beauty in itself.
Why thank you! I like thumbing through it and remembering something I’ve made with the yarn.
I keep all the labels but I’ve actually never had the guts/patience to file them under the same place, other than online.
Now, where’s the nearest empty notebook…
I think I got that notebook at a dollar store or some bargain store. I loved the feel of the paper and didn’t even have a plan for it until I just started stapling labels to it.
What a wonderful and beautiful idea! I totally agree – nothing beats the tactile aspect! Thank you for sharing.
So glad you liked it.
I do keep a note book with samples of fabric, silk ribbon, yarn etc. It saves so much time and I enjoy looking through it from time to time.
It is fun to go back and look at the samples!
This is wonderful! I keep all my swatches, but they are not organized at all. I used to occasionally pin them to my pattern notebook.
It is fairly easy to keep up the notebook because all I have to do is attach a bit of yarn. If I make it more complicated, I won’t keep it updated.
I have long kept a textile note notebook – projects are dated, recipients noted, my sketches or picture (if I used a pattern), yarn label taped in, any instructions necessary if I want to make it again, and a yarn sample (though my samples are not as large as yours). My daughter gave me this notebook years ago – it’s a hard covered (Monet paintings on front & back!), spiral ring 1.5 inch deep book. After I filled it up, its replacement is actually three hard covered, spiral ring art sketch books (heavy paper – I purchased them at a good art supply store). Each has a different colored cover, and I use one for knitting, one for weaving, and the other for spinning & dying.
Please post pictures of them! I’d love to see the notebooks.
Fantastic idea! I love journals and what a great way to catalog your project “recipes”! Love!
Glad you liked it. I enjoy looking back through it.
Reblogged this on Joanne Shewan Textiles and commented:
We were only discussing yesterday, at our Nutty Knitters’ group, the challenge of sizing a yarn we no longer have the band for! I don’t have a Notebook for commercial yarns but I do have a log of the yarns I have dyed myself,
I love this idea! This is one of those things, you should have known sooner. I’m going out to find myself such a nice notebook! Thank you!
Glad you like the idea. I definitely plan to keep it updated.
I have a feeling a thousand and one new knitting/wool journals are going to be started.. thanks to you for sharing this great idea. 🙂
Well I want to see them! Everyone will add their own style and ideas.
Love it! I’ve been trying to find a pretty and organized way to remember my yarns. Thanks so much for sharing!
You are so welcome!
Reblogged this on myjoyfulpath and commented:
Wow, what a great idea if your a knitter or crafter!
I’m one of those people full of good intentions, so I’ve been stopping and starting new notebooks for years. They just peter out after a little while (blush). The only notebook I really stick to is the one with my sock designs. BUT – I still have every label I ever took off a ball of yarn. Some are very old so I laminated them to make bookmarks. And I never throw away offcuts or even the smallest snippets of yarn – I collect them, card them, and make new yarn from them. I’ve taken a series of photos of this process and put them up on Ravelry (search for “swatch from offcut yarn”).
I like the laminating idea! You can reuse the labels every day!
Oh, and one more thing: I use the back of my old business cards to jot down an abbreviated version of the pattern I’m knitting so I can remind myself while I’m knitting on the go…
This is a wonderful idea. I’m going to have to start my own knitting notebook, complete with care instructions. And I’ll have to start one for the dresses I make my granddaughters.
That sounds great, especially with swatches of the fabrics you use for the dresses.
What a great idea! I have all my labels and lots of bits of wool but don’t think I’ll be able to match them up. Wish I had done this as I started knitting again 4 years ago. Happy Christmas to you 🙂
I wish I had started earlier too. There is a sweater I made with this lovely yarn and I can’t even remember the brand!
Wishing you a wonderful Christmas and new year.
Brilliant idea. I love it, I must do this. Thanks for the tip.
Glad you liked the idea. I just added a couple of new swatches to mine.
This is a brilliant idea-thank you. I must do this!
That’s great idea!
I need to do this. ASAP. I kind of gave up on saving the yarn labels this past year….because I was stuffing them in a little box. It was just too cluttery 🙂 I like this idea very much. Terrific idea!
Glad you liked it. It started off as a simple place to store my labels and turned into something even better.
Hi Verónica. Thanks so much for liking my blog; I take it as an encouragement. My first click was to this page and you’ve given me the solution to the bands lying about, being stuffed in bags with yarn (that doesn’t go with the bands in question) and generally getting lost. I had some vague idea of organising all of it and this is perfect! I might even add a picture of whatever I created with the yarn, especially if I’m planning to give it away. Thank you for making my future life easier 😉
I’m so glad! I’d love to see your version. Be sure to post about it!
This is an awsome idea. I remember back in crafts’ classes of elementary school they told us to do a notebook consisting of all the practice bits of knitting, crochet, emroidery and different sewing samples. I can’t remember actually doing it though.
It’s easy to keep it up. I just staple the label and a piece of yarn to a blank page. Helps in keeping it updated.
Nice! I don’t knit, but this same idea can be used to keep track of the raw wool and roving I use for needle felting. Just yesterday I was wishing I had been more diligent about that. . . and then I saw your post! Idea born, I mean, borrowed. Very creative, Veronica! Start your own etsy shop with them, maybe?
It definitely can apply to any kind of craft project or just to jot down ideas. I like how neatly it keeps all my yarn samples in one place. I bet it will be fun to feel all the fibers in yours!
I love this! I still have a bag full of labels that I always thought I would use for something. You’re notebook is inspiring!
I’m so glad you liked it. It started off as a simple way to store my yarn labels but now it’s more of a journal. I know you will enjoy creating yours.
Love this idea. I might have to borrow it for myself!
My knitting notebook isn’t quite as tidy and beautiful, but it is very much the same concept.
Well thank you although I didn’t quite think of it as tidy. The rubber band helps. Show us your notebook.
What a great idea! I decided for 2013 I was going to keep all of my labels to see just how much yarn i actually use in the course of a year, but the idea of keeping them organized in a pretty notebook is brilliant! I do love ravelry, but this is awesome! 🙂
So glad you liked it.
Totally doing this. I even have a pretty journal that’s brand new. Thanks for the idea!
Post a picture after you’ve filled a few pages.
What a fabulous idea! You are right, there is nothing like being able to touch and feel the yarn. It’s like taste and touch . . . you can’t get that through technology.
glad you liked.
Thanks so much for stopping by my new blog. As a newbie knitter, this is a top tip I can see great merit in. Choosing the right yarn is so important. Great blog 🙂
Thanks! I’ve referred to it often.
I keep a sample of the yarn stapled to the label but they are just in a plastic tub. The book is a good idea. Thanks for stopping by my blog too.
Show a picture of the tub or if you make a notebook, post it!
What a great idea! I may have to start one 🙂