Wednesday, April 18, 2007

101 Ideas for Using Up Scraps of Sock Yarn

Last night at the weekly SnB, Monica, (showing early signs of obsession), was working on her first pair of socks. She recognized that of the 100 gm of yarn she bought for her first pair of sock, she was likely to only use 80 to 90 gm and will left with 10 to 20 gm of left over sock yarn and was wondering what to do with it.

So for Monica and all the others with a similar problem, I present:
101 ideas for Using Up Scraps of Sock Yarn

A Four Yarn Spiral sock in progress.
1-- Collect enough yarn to make a pair socks. Use the spiral knitting technique (Yarn Harlot recently blog about using the technique -with 4 knitters working together --to make a shawl.)But it can also be used to knit tubes (vs. disks) and can be used to make socks.
2-- Collect 400 or more gm. Using 4 or more strands per round, Knit a spiral shawl--if you are lucky, maybe you can find 3 others, just as obsessed, and do it together.

3--Join ends together into a single strand, and knit a multi colored shawl or blanket.

4--Collect enough to make a pair of gloves. It’s unlikely that working with random bits, you’ll amass a collection as pretty as the colors used to make these gloves, but you can see how small bits can be brought together to make whole
5-- Collect enough to make half a sock, and supplement with a 50 gm ball of sock yarn. Make socks with striped cuff and leg.. These slouch socks are one example, but other stripes would work. These were inspired by Lucy Neatby, her book Cool Socks, Warm Feet is filled with ideas for using up bits of sock yarn.

6-- Make a pair of Turkish style socks, (striped patterned work--this photo is from Anne Zilboorgs book Simple Socks.) by the time you have collected enough yarn to make a pair of socks like these, you’ll also have enough skill! This out of print book is treasure-and worth every penny it cost.

7-- Combined small bits with a 50 to 60 gm ball of yarn and work cuff and leg in an intarsia patterns or other patters (see Lucy Neatby again!)or or Nanette Blanchard-- working flat, and seamed or seamlessly by making one of the yarn crosses your seam (working in rows, in the round)
8-- Combine small bits and a 50 gm ball of yarn and make contrasting cuffs, heels and toes, either in a single contrasting color, or in fair isle, or in a combination.

The socks to right have cuffs and heels from Paton's Kroy, the body of the sock is Lion Brand Magic stripes.

Buy an I-cord machine like this:
Note: an machine like this can enable many obsessive behaviors.

9--Make lengths of I-cord (70 to 90 inches) 6 to 12 in total. Group them (2 to 4 in each group) bind together (leaving 6 inch tail) and make groups of 2 to 4 strands. Braid. Bind off when there is about 6 inches remaining make 2 shorter lengths, (12 to 15 inches) cover binding and tie in bow. (Braided scarf)

10--Make lengths of I-cord (70 to 90 inches) 6 to 12 in total. Lay them parallel and join together--use a back stitch or even machine stitching them together.
Join strands together at intervals, with pompoms, or knitted embellishments--Do this on both sides.
Finish by joining together in a similar style at the other end for a striped scarf.

11--Make lengths of I-cord (70 to 90 inches) 40 or more in total. Lay them parallel and join together--use a back stitch, embroidery or even machine stitching them together.
Join strands together at intervals, with flat(ish) knitted embellishments, or decorative embroidery -Use sock yarn for embroidered details --Do this on one side only.
Finish by joining together in a similar style at the other end for a blanket or rug.

12-- Make lengths of I-cord and use as shoe laces --be obsessive and change laces in your sneaker/shoes on a daily basis to match your socks. (Note: this is borderline insanity)

13--Make miles of I-cord (surprisingly quickly with a machine) and use I-cord as yarn to knit scarves, or hats. (This idea could really 13 to 20 or so, since there are lots of things you could knit using I-cord “yarn” -including machine washable, wool area rugs!) (Yarn Harlot (I think it was YH) recently posted about someone doing just this recently)

14--Make or various lengths of I-cord --from several inches to miles, and form into rings or other shapes, to make scarves or garments (see Lucy Neatby’s Trade Winds for ideasi.e. here Chain Mail/Amore scarf)

15--Make miles of I-cord, Coil and sew into a rug (NOTE: this qualifies as a form of insanity)

16-- Make miles of I-cord, braid 3 or 4 strands together to made a thick braid, coil, and sew these coils into a rug. (slightly less insane.)

17-- Using a modular knitting technique,, knit yarn into afghans or clothing.(see April 13th entry, It's Blaannkieeee Fridaay!)

18--Make pompoms--small ones. Use tail of the pompom and sew/tie together to make a pompom hat.

19--Make pompoms--medium sized ones. Use tail of the pompom to sew/tie together to make a pompom scarf or vest.

20--Make pompoms--large ones. Use tail of the pompom and sew/tie together to make a pompom blanket or rug. You can also sew onto an old sheet, for a slightly more substantial blanket.

21--Cut yarn into small lengths, (wind it round a CD jewel case, cut loops open, then in half, scatter round open greenscapes. Birds and small mammals will collect and use to line their nests.

Ideas 22 to 101:
Recognize you have a serious obsession about scraps of yarn, and seek mental health treatment. (Drugs are advised!)
Meanwhile, I have finished the first bath mat (OK, I still have to trim the fringe to make it all even. But the knitting and other finishing is all done.)

And I have started a second.

Mostly a Ombre of blues, yellow's and white (Bernat crafters cotton, a 14oz skein), with yellow, (Lily's Sugar and Cream) and 2 shades of blue (Lion Brand Kitchen cotton) stripes intersperced. (As you see, I have dark blue light blue and yellow towels (and lots of white ones too) to match this bathmat.

This is a process I call “repositioning”. I move yarn from the ‘stash’ pile and make it into something that I can call “bath linens”. I don’t really have mores space, I just have changed the piles round.


Nanette said...

I recently tried the Magic Ball technique with a bunch of my sock yarn leftovers. It made the most awful sock you'd ever seen! Or perhaps I'm just too much of a knitting control freak to let randomness decide what colors to put next to each other. :)

Anyway, I love all your info posts. Keep 'em coming!

Sonya said...

I love (Beatrice's) i-cord knitter. I might need to get one for myself!

Monbert said...

I was getting worried around idea number 15. Glad to see ideas 22 - 101. haha.

Thanks for the ideas. I love the concept of multi yarn socks. Learning gloves is next, after I finish obsessing over socks that is.

Alliesw said...

Reading this post made me so happy. It is good to meet someone who can turn complete obession in a productive direction (I am still working on that myself (not the obsession part, the productivce part)). Thanks!

alienated_bookworm said...

LOL reg ideas 22 - 101! You had me worried at first! ;-)

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