The Virtues of Saving Scrap Yarn

scrap yarn

scrap yarnI try to be a frugal person in my crafting. Supplies can get expensive, and with so many yarns and fabrics and buttons to entice you, a trip to the craft store can deplete your funds quickly. So I set buying freezes, recycle old clothes and notions, try to make do with what’s in my stash before considering purchasing more. AND I save leftover yarn from other knitting or crocheting projects.

I don’t mean that I keep the shrunken skeins, with all but a few yards used. That goes without saying. What I mean is, I save the loose ends after they have been woven into and then snipped from projects. They usually measure a few inches at most. I have this ball of scrap yarn I’ve had for years. I just simply add on all new pieces with a square knot, and trim the ends.

The ball contains the leftovers from at least tens of projects. It features varying yarn types of different lengths, colors, types and textures. And what is it good for? First of all, anything I make from it will be a reminder of the different items I’ve crafted over a sizable amount of time. Second of all, it knits and crochets up into truly unique pieces of fabric (although all of those knots can get bothersome from time to time, but it’s worth it).

What can be made from leftover yarn?

Cat toys. Your cat will probably go through an army of toy mice, several of which will mysteriously disappear under stoves, refrigerators, and who-knows-where. By using scrap yarn to make cat toys, you’re cutting your losses while making a toy with c-r-a-z-y colors that you probably won’t regret losing as much as one made with your best fibers. Freeform projects. Freeform crochet and knitting consists of randomly assembled pieces of crafted patches. There are no restrictions with regard to shape, pattern, quantity, et cetera. Introducing some scrap yarn contributes to freeform’s inherent lack of crafting inhibition in a big way. Scarves and shawls. Make yourself a wrap that looks like something Grizzabella from “Cats” would wear! Or possibly something a little more refined or even funkier. Coasters. Super-variegated drink mats are conversation pieces as well as utilitarian barriers against water stains.

And so on and so forth. I recommend trying to save your yarn scraps. Maybe skip trying to save anything smaller than 1 1/2 inch, as working with such a tiny piece may cause more frustration than it’s worth. And it will likely take you awhile to build up a large enough ball. However, the end result is a skein unlike any other, literally, whose uses are limited only by your own creativity.

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