How to host a knitting party (+ free pattern)

Martingale's Knit & Crochet Friday

Knitter's Project Tote from Sew the Perfect GiftOne of my favorite pastimes during the holidays is gathering with a few crafty friends for an afternoon of working on projects, sipping cocoa, and chatting by the fire. I have some fabulously creative friends, and it’s always fun to see what they’re working on—a gift for a family member, a holiday decoration for the home, or something cozy to wear outdoors.

As for what projects I take to crafty gatherings, it’s not uncommon to find me with knitting needles in hand. In fact, many friends have commented that they’d like to learn to knit, but I’ve usually brought only a single pair of needles for my project. This year, I’m considering something new: hosting a knitting party for my friends who are new to fiber crafts. It would be a great way to teach friends who want to learn or to just enjoy an afternoon with friends while working on an easy knitting pattern.

Do you have friends who would like to knit? Or maybe you have plenty of friends who already knit, and you’d like to host a holiday party with a knitting theme. Well, you’re in luck! Today we have some tips for hosting your own holiday knitting party, as well as a free easy knitting pattern for your get-together. Ready to start planning?

How to Host a Holiday Knitting Party

1. Send invitations

Whether you send printed invitations or e-invitations (you can send invites by email for free from companies like Evite), be sure to invite your guests at least two to three weeks before the party. Advance notice gives guests plenty of time to figure out their schedules and to RSVP. If you don’t hear back from guests within a week of the party, feel free to follow up with a phone call.

Need help with invitations? We’ve created an invitation you can download and print at home for free for your party! Just print (the PDF prints two invitations on an 8½" x 11″ sheet of paper), cut, and fill in the details.

Printable knitting-party invitation
Free invitation printable for knitters: two invitations per 8½" x 11″ sheet of paper

If you want to party crochet-style, we’ve got a free printable invitation for you too!

2. Cook Up Something Delicious

Because knitting doesn’t play well with finger foods, you might want to set aside some time during your party for some munching. Your guests will appreciate a break from the needles (you can give tips on knitting ergonomics during the break) and a chance to enjoy a delicious meal. Before the party, start an easy soup in the slow cooker. By the time you’re ready for a break, it will be warm and ready for your guests—leaving you free to knit and enjoy the company.

You could also plan to have a beverage station on the table when guests arrive. Set some hot water and coffee, along with a few selections of tea and cocoa, on a tray with spoons and mugs for self-service.

3. Favor them with Favors

Free knit scarf pattern--Farrow Rib ScarfConsider putting together an inexpensive knitting kit for guests who are new to knitting—so you don’t have to burden them with the task of finding supplies they’re not familiar with before your party. This kit can include an inexpensive pair of starter needles, one or two skeins of yarn, and an easy beginner pattern.

We’ve created a free printable pattern that you can download for your guests; the Farrow Rib Scarf from The Little Box of Scarves by Melissa Matthay and Sheryl Thies (left) is a simple knit/purl pattern perfect for beginners. If some of your guests are veteran knitters, you could include a special favor just for them, like a pair of pocket-sized scissors for yarn cutting, one or two jeweled stitch markers, or a $5 gift card to a local yarn shop. If you’re feeling ambitious (and generous!), make knitting-needle holders for each of your guests to take home (like the one shown below from Everyday Handmade).

Knitting-needle holder

As an alternative to buying all the supplies for your guests, include a supply list with the invitations so your friends will be ready to learn when they arrive. Another option is to have a few leftover balls of yarn and spare needles available to loan to beginners for the afternoon. If you do decide to have favors or a starter kit for guests, print these free matching cards—you can use them as tags for your party favors or as placetags for your table.

free printable placetags
Free printable placetags

4. Create a comfortable (and festive) atmosphere

Party ideas Pinterest boardIn the winter, it’s easy for hands to get chilly while knitting away, even by the fire. Consider providing fingerless gloves for your guests to borrow while they knit. You could also pile throws or quilts for guests to wrap up in or place on their laps for added warmth.

Other touches you might add to your party include holiday music, scented candles, or holiday decorations. Check out our Party Ideas Pinterest board for more ideas!

5. Have fun

Don’t forget the real reason you invited friends over—to enjoy their company! Be sure to relax and have fun knitting and chatting (and maybe teaching a friend to knit). You’ll be creating great memories for years to come.

Do you have any tips for hosting a holiday party or teaching friends to knit? Share them with us in the comments!

4 Comments (leave a comment)

  • Is there a pattern for that DPN case in the fourth photo?

    Hi Kim, yes there is. It’s in the book Everyday Handmade by Cassie Barden and Adrienne Smitke. The link is in the text of the blog post. It would make a great gift for a knitter!
    ~Cornelia from Martingale

    —Kim Q on December 7, 2012
  • Wonderful! How soon can you blog the invite cards for my crochet party!?

    Hi Lynne! Thanks for the reminder-we didn’t mean to leave you crocheters out in the cold! We’ve added a link for a Crochet Party invitation to the blog post. See, we really DO read the comments!
    ~Cornelia from Martingale

    —Lynne on December 7, 2012
  • Best idea EVER! I hope it’s okay that I reposted it on my blog.

    We’re glad you liked it! Thanks for the repost (and of course it’s okay!).
    ~Cornelia from Martingale

    Goose Grass on December 12, 2012
  • Is the bag in the first photo available as a pattern or as a bag – love the design of that, and the party idea 🙂

    Hi Tricia! That bag pattern is available in the book "Sew the Perfect Gift". Thanks for your comment!
    ~Cornelia from Martingale

    —Tricia on December 14, 2012

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