While on the topic of remnants

Since being home in retirement, I see, touch, and feel my yarn collection much more than when I was working.  In fact, I might even say I avoided looking at my yarn as it seemed to yearn for my attention.  Yearning yarn of yesterday has become quite the playmate for today.  Corny, but true.  Sorting, organizing, thinking, wondering  . . . this is what we knitters fill our minds with.  I am finding these scrap remnants a fun challenge in how to incorporate them into patterns I love.   Here are some recent attempts in three different ways:

Little bits of scraps for an otherwise solid sweater ~ In this collection, you can see that most of the sweater is solid but there is a little color detail somewhere in the sweater.  This is a perfect moment to look at your remnant stash to see what colors you can utilize.  In the bear sweater which is in bulky weight, I wanted bulky scraps of a Kodiac.  In the fair isle collared jacket, I wanted worsted fair isle colors for the collar, and for the pink pullover, I wanted sport weight scraps.  In all 3 cases, I was able to easily succeed causing me only to purchase the MC of the sweaters.

Longer yardage scraps ~ Larger scraps for whole blocks of color can make up the entire sweater.  Coordinating a few colors and knitting large sections of a sweater then sewing it together makes for a great way to utilize stash as seen here.

Large areas of multi-color can use up stash as in these 3 examples.  The first is using many fingering weight scraps, the middle project used sport weight scraps, and the last utilized many worsted weight scraps.

As I forge onward, I have these on the horizon:

By spilling out all my Rowan Scottish Tweed I have decided to put together just the brown and orchid for this gorgeous oversized lace sweater.

By spilling out bright colors, I am visualizing [THIS] in my near future.

I am hearing the term ‘scrappy’ on Ravelry.  What I have discussed here is different than what I understand that term to be.  In all of these cases, the weights of the yarns are the same within one project and each color has a very clear purpose in its placement within the garment.  Maybe, I could give ‘scrappy’ a go?

The best part in utilizing stash is it makes room for the scraps that are yet to come.  It is very satisfying knitting up every inch of the yarn you own and doing so in ways that are completely your own.  Did I mention that most of these were $0.00 to make?  Color is fun to play with and a treat to look at especially when you appreciate your new project(s) and recall where the yarn originated.

13 responses to “While on the topic of remnants”

  1. Thought-provoking post, as always. I sort by color and combine, if necessary, to get the proper weight. Love the blog’s new look!


    • Like you want, say a bulky green, you’ll knit two strands together? Regarding blog look, I am constantly changing it. Many reasons. And, then I want it to look right on Ravelry. Many of these themes do not ‘work’ there. This is a pretty, clean looking theme. Might stick with it for awhile.


      • Exactly. And since I have a bunch of really fine yarn in my stash, I am often knitting even four strands at a time. This also makes an opportunity for color shading if the strands don’t match exactly. I made a very oversized Navajo-patterned sweater from VK Fall 1992 this way. I had gotten a bunch of miscellaneous yarn from a garage sale: cottons, chenille, alpaca, wool, and none of it was heavier than fingering. I just sorted it into reds, greens, blues, and “other” and went to town. The shape is quite dated, but the pictures don’t do the texture justice. I wore it to an earlier Stitches convention and the editor of Knitter’s followed me to ask where I got such a great kit. So I count it as a success.


        • ok, now I am really glad I did write this post as I never thought about this idea. Such a perfect way to utilize the scrap of scraps! hahaha thank you for sharing!


  2. I love how you have looked at scraps and leftovers in a new light. 2014, the year I did socks, I used up all the leftovers in a granny square afghan, which I use all the time (and which always matches my socks, lol) but it was really scrappy and not at all planned. Now I am saving sock scraps and hope someday to make a scrappy adult surprise jacket with them. I figure it will be years away. But what about other leftovers? The 10% cushion when I make a sweater? You have given me a whole new way to look at it. :-)


        • It is the making of a ball of yarn with stash scraps, connecting the ends together so that you are knitting as if from one ball of yarn. There are several ways to connect, wool is suggested as best to use as it has ply and spit apparently works, NOT water. Truly fascinating. Then there is the term ‘scrappy’. So, my use of remnants is probably 101 while there are many other ideas out there.


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