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Corralled: verb gathered together and confined

Look, maybe your house is already perfect. Maybe you know every single thing you own. Maybe every single thing you own has a designated spot where it belongs. And maybe every single thing you own is currently resting comfortably in that designated spot.

In which case, I assume you also drink enough water, get plenty of sleep, eat only the healthiest and most delicious of meals, have no split ends, and never ever ever have a funny smell or a sticky spot anywhere in your house. In fact, I assume you are some sort of super being sent to earth to make the rest of us feel bad.

If that's you, this pattern isn't for you. You've already got your act together. You don't need it.

If, however, you're still clinging to the idea that you'd be more organized if only you had the perfect container to put stuff in (so basically, if you are me), this is absolutely for you. Now, I don't actually promise that it will work. I seem to have bought (or made) a whole bunch of various containers over the years, and the spirit of perfect order still has not descended upon me. But wow am I willing to keep trying!

What to do with the sweet, silly little things:
  • Use them as a place to drop your jewelry when you take it off
  • Keep them beside your knitting chair to hold your stitch markers and darning needles and scissors
  • Assemble some of your most beloved personal treasures into a little collection and show them off properly
  • Use them as a dice tray for your favorite board games
Your imagination is the limit here. I suspect you already have a whole host of ideas for exactly how you could use a few of these!

The pattern is tremendously detailed and gives you lots of options for different ways to fold up your tray (you can see several of the variations in the pictures here).

This is easy knitting (it’s almost entirely stockinette worked in the round), and the smallest trays have about as many stitches as a few good sized swatches, so you can probably make a little one in an afternoon!

There absolutely is one tiny stretch of stitches where you will grumble at me and call me mean names. But I warn you about it in the pattern (so you don't think you've done anything wrong, you'll totally know that bit is just *like* that), and it's over with quickly (so you'll be right back to auto-pilot knitting in no time).

The only special equipment you’ll need is a piece of plastic you can cut with scissors. I've used old credit cards, the lids from yogurt containers, the sides of laundry detergent bottles, the bottom of salad containers, and the packages takeout comes in. The plastic won't show, so the color doesn't matter. It just needs to be waterproof and something you can cut to size. I'd be amazed if you didn't have something suitable in your recycling bin right now!

Also, depending on how you want to fold up your tray, you'll want buttons or scrap yarn or sewing thread or snaps or ribbon or pretty much anything you can think of to use to hold fabric together! Again, you have a huge array of options (pretty much anything you can use to hold fabric together is perfect), and you almost certainly have something suitable on hand already.

And just in case you’re feeling a bit nervous about making something so structural, the pattern includes a lengthy photo tutorial to walk you through every step of the process. There are all sorts of helpful tips on everything from how to cast on to how to block to when to weave in your ends. It’s almost absurdly detailed, but it really does mean you can totally make these!

These are perfect for you if:
  • You share my conviction that it is a lack of cute bins/boxes/trays that's keeping you from being perfectly organized, not any other, more fundamental, difficulties
  • You kind of love the idea of knitting an object to keep your knitting stuff in...there's just something deeply pleasing about that
They’re not for you if:
  • You are already perfectly tidy and do not need any help staying organize
  • You don’t like charts (the pattern uses charts)

You will get a PDF (3MB) file