If you’ve ever used knitting needles before, you would know that they are pretty durable. You can use them numerous times and still be quite reliable.
However, like any other tool, knitting needles will wear out eventually. When that happens, you either have to get rid of them, one way or another, or use them for something else, which begs the question, Are old knitting needles worth anything?
Interestingly, yes, old knitting needles can be useful in various ways. But, of course, it ultimately depends on the condition of the needles and their material.
If you have a couple of old knitting needles lying in your house, you may want to stick around as we discuss what you can do with old knitting needles.
Sell Them in Online Marketplaces
Though it’s not necessarily a way to “use” the old knitting needles, you can at least benefit from them if you sell them in online marketplaces. But, of course, this would only be applicable if your old knitting needles are still somewhat useable.
Keep in mind, though, that you have close to zero chances of selling your old knitting needles if you list them on the wrong site, like Amazon, for example.
Though it’s still decent, Amazon isn’t exactly the best place to sell second-hand items. Instead, you’d want to list your old knitting needles on the following sites:
- Facebook Marketplace
You should have the highest chances of success by selling on these platforms.
Apart from choosing the right platform, you should also make sure your offer is actually reasonable. Below are some tips to help you sell your items faster:
1. Check the Price of Similar Products
Don’t set the price of your item without putting any thought into it.
Check the price of similar products first. For instance, if a set of wooden needles on Etsy costs $50, sell your wooden needles at around that price, preferably cheaper.
People would naturally compare prices, so it’s better if your old knitting needles offer a more appealing deal than the rest of those on that platform.
2. Add Something Else
It would also help if you added another item apart from the needles themselves. Doing so can add value to your offer and set it apart from other items.
For example, you can include a ball of yarn or wool along with the needles.
Of course, you will have to increase the price to reflect the addition of that item, but make sure the price doesn’t get divergent from similar products.
3. Be More Creative With the Description
When listing the needles, the platform should ask you to give a description.
People would usually just provide a bland description like “9-inch long bamboo needles.” However, that’s not the best description you can use for this product.
A detail buyers love to see in these kinds of descriptions is what the needles were used for. So, for example, you can say you used the needles to knit a scarf.
The item becomes more personable and adds sentimental value to the needles.
Remember that as tempting as your deal is, you won’t always be able to sell your old knitting needles. In that case, you can instead use them for something else.
Incorporate Them in Your DIY Projects
One use of needles that many people have found great success in is incorporating them into DIY projects. For the most part, you can use them best as materials.
Here are some suggestions if you can’t think of a DIY project to use the needles:
- Shape metal knitting needles into something else, like a letter, a whole word or name, or even a drawing. Then, you can hang it for decoration.
- Weld metal knitting needles into jewelry, like rings or bracelets.
- Use metal needles as a component for DIY crafts, like as a handle for purses.
Keep in mind that these are only a few examples of what you can do to your old knitting needles if you intend to go the DIY route. It is entirely up to your imagination how you would incorporate it into your DIY projects.
Use Them As Unconventional Tools
We also often hear from people who used to knit or are still knitting that old knitting needles are somewhat useful if you treat them as unconventional tools.
A lot of people use old knitting needles:
- as hair pins to hold their buns,
- as plant supports,
- to test when a cake is done, or
- to unclog hoses or reach narrow spaces, in general.
Like with DIY projects, it’s entirely up to your imagination how you would want to use knitting needles. It might help to just think of them as sturdy sticks.
Send Them to a Charitable Organization or Local Recycling Center
If the above options are not viable, then you have two options remaining, both of which involve simply giving them to someone else.
It’s only a matter of deciding where to donate them. Your two main options, however, are a charitable organization or a local recycling center.
Donating them to a charitable organization is always a good idea. There will always be someone who wants to knit but cannot because they don’t have the tools.
Similarly, sending them to a local recycling center would at least mean you’re not wasting the metal or wood used to make the knitting needle.
The decision is entirely up to you.
FAQs About Old Knitting Needles
If you have any more questions you want to be answered, read on as we round up the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about this topic.
How Long Do Knitting Needles Last?
Knitting needles, in general, should last for several years before you can consider them as old. How many years exactly will depend on the material it’s made of.
For your reference, knitting needles can be made of four materials, including:
- Wood, typically bamboo
- Carbon Fiber
Carbon fiber knitting needles will almost always last longer than knitting needles made of other materials. They may even last for a lifetime if taken care of properly.
However, as they are very expensive and rare, not many people have them.
Meanwhile, plastic knitting needles typically last the shortest, as some may wear out after only a couple of months. Wood and aluminum are comparable in this regard, though aluminum is often the more durable of the two.
That’s why you’re more likely to find old metal knitting needles than old wooden ones. But if we disregard the material, a good estimate is five years.
As always, there are other factors that may affect this, such as how well you maintain the knitting needles or how often you use them.
What Are Vintage Knitting Needles Made Of?
If you intend to sell your old knitting needles, you will eventually stumble upon product listings of vintage knitting needles in online marketplaces like Etsy.
You may also notice that this particular type of knitting needle is more expensive than regular old knitting needles. That’s because they’re often made of exotic materials. If your needles are vintage, then you must price them accordingly.
Vintage knitting needles are typically made of at least one of these materials:
- Walrus tusks
- Galalith plastic
There are many other materials that can comprise a vintage knitting needle.
So, just follow the general rule of thumb that a knitting needle is probably vintage if it’s made of anything other than aluminum, bamboo, plastic, or carbon fiber.
Can Knitting Needles Be Recycled?
Recycling, by definition, means converting a material that would otherwise be thrown away into a new product. Since we stated earlier that you could use old knitting needles for DIY projects, it’s a given that they can be recycled.
That applies to all types of knitting needles. But of course, the recycling method would vary according to the material, whether it’s aluminum, wood, etc.
For aluminum, a recycling center would usually shred it first, melt it, and reshape it into something else. But you can recycle it yourself through bending or welding.
Wooden and plastic knitting is much harder to recycle since they’re not exactly the most flexible materials. So, you have to use them as is, unlike aluminum needles which you can reshape. The same goes for carbon fiber knitting needles.
Carbon fiber knitting needles are much too sturdy to bend or weld with in-house tools. Hence, you should either use them as is or send them to a recycling center.
The Bottom Line
It’s only natural to be mindful of what you waste. That’s particularly true if you have a ton of materials that you no longer use, like old knitting needles.
Thankfully, though, there are a ton of ways to reuse them, and if you don’t want to, you can even donate them to recycling centers or even sell them for profit.