What is a yarn bowl? I hear you ask. Well..it’s a decorative piece of knitting or crochet equipment whose sole purpose is to stop the yarn ball from running away under the lounge while you work and getting covered in dust bunnies (and who knows what else in my house).
Yarn bowls can be made of anything really; wood, clay, plastic, felt, or any number of other materials. The important thing is that they hold the ball securely inside and have a yarn guide that keeps the yarn from getting really tangled as you pull it through.
I pulled these photos of yarn bowls straight from an internet search. Some of them are so pretty.
While not strictly required for knitting or crochet, they do add a touch of class to the whole thing. I love the look of them and can imagine a row of yarn bowls on a shelf, each with it’s own little ball or cake of yarn sitting patiently in it while I decide what I will knit today, or sitting on a table beside my chair as I effortlessly and smoothly knit Fair Isle patterns without tangles, snarls or swearing.
The ones with lids have the advantage of being more dust proof I suppose, but there is something about seeing your yarn while you work that is so soothing and satisfying.
Home made yarn bowls here we come…
I decided to use what I had in my craft supplies (not really a choice when getting extra materials means driving two hours), I had air dry clay left over from previous projects and it is relatively cheap to buy. Next I needed a template for my bowl (not owning a potting wheel or even knowing how to use one). I found two bowls that might do among my stash.
Air dry clay from my stash
A mat, a bowl, a rolling pin, coffee and a water bottle…I’m set
Oh, and a knife for shaping
Cut a chunk off the clay and mush it up until it’s soft.
Cover my chosen bowl with cling wrap
Roll the clay out flat with the rolling pin and mold it over the bowl.
Cut the spiral shape into the clay (carefully) and be sure to leave a gap wide enough for yarn to pass through
Sand the rough edges off the bowl once it’s dry, especially the spiral bit
Another possible mold
I decided to try molding inside this one
Before sanding the bowl down, you can see how rough the spiral is
Using my new yarn bowls
While I don’t actually need them to knit, or even to keep my yarn from getting tangled, the little yarn bowls are fun and decorative. I think I will make some more to sell at the markets and on Etsy. Maybe I can add paint to them, or use different coloured clay to make them.