Every knitting project I complete leaves me with some amount of leftover yarn. In some cases dealing with the leftover yarn is easy. When I knit my Clapotis, I ended up with only a couple of inches of yarn left over and it was easy just to toss away the remaining scraps.
But in some cases I just don’t know what to do with the leftover yarn. There seems to be this inner pack rat in me that won’t let the scraps go. Instead theses scraps are getting wound up into balls and placed in baskets, bowls, and vases all around my craft room. I know some of it will never be used, but how much yarn needs to be leftover to be worth saving?
Lizard Ridge left me with a bucket full of leftovers balls of yarn in various sizes and colors. I did save all of these and hope to some day knit a crazy colored felted bag or cushion cover with the project remnants – perhaps even using the pattern from the Lizard Ridge afghan.
I have found a use for my Sock knitting leftovers. I always end up with varying amounts of yarn left after knitting a pair of socks. It all depends on the yarn I start out with, the pattern I’m using, and the size socks I’m knitting. It does seem though, that I am always left with a good amount of yarn, too much really to just casually toss into the trash. So I came up with a plan for my leftover sock yarn. I’ll be knitting squares with the leftovers for an afghan. Knitting baby booties and hats would also be a nice thing to do with the sock yarn leftovers.
But larger projects I find are leaving me with anywhere from a few yards to a couple of extra skeins. When I knit Wicked earlier this year I bought a few extra skeins of yarn because it was my first sweater and I had heard it was a good idea. It was a good idea too. I ended up needing some of that extra yarn but ended up with two full skeins and a partial left over.
Now, I’m not going to throw out two untouched skeins of yarn, but I don’t want a matching scarf or hat. Maybe I can knit a scarf or hat as a gift. Possibly I can give away or trade any full skeins and they can become someone else's delima. But what about the partial skein? Is it okay to throw away a half a skein of yarn? I don’t really imagine using it for anything, but I feel bad just tossing out 50 yards of yarn. How much is too much to simply toss out?
What got me thinking about all this is I’m currently knitting a shawl in four different colors of mercerized cotton and realized I will end up with a full skein of one color and partial skeins of the other colors when I’m finished. I don’t really want to save any of it. I just want to toss it out. But I decide to see what you do with your scraps before I do the whole baby and bath water thing. So, what do you do with the leftover yarn after a project is complete?