Do you know the term “stash buster”? I think it’s a term that goes across most fabric crafts, be it crochet or knitting or sewing or embroidery or probably a hundred other crafts that I’m not thinking of right now. You see, when you spend enough time doing things that involve using fabrics or yarns or flosses, you wind up with a lot of little odds and ends that aren’t good for much on their own, unless you’re in desperate need of a lot of really small embellishments or tiny pouches or scrubby facial pads (and there’s nothing wrong with any of those things, but sooner or later you have enough of those for a lifetime). Enter the stash buster: a project specifically designed to use up all those little scraps of yarn/fabric/etc.
I have a few rules that I adhere to for my own stash-busting projects:
- use only the same yarn weight and as close as reasonably possible materials for each project (ie. only medium 4 weight acrylic, even if wildly different colours from different manufacturers) so it can be laundered with minimal oh-my-gosh-did-I-destroy-my-good-work concern (and I’ve learned this one the hard way – some materials aren’t meant to be tumble-dried. Or hold water too well to drip-dry without developing some… fascinating…? smells. And let’s not get started on water temperature!)
- don’t get too attached to a plan for the end project. If you can’t experiment and have fun with your end-bits-and-pieces, what can you experiment and have fun with?
- embrace the tacky. I’ve seen some really beautiful pieces that were done of scraps, but unless you’ve perfectly planned all your projects to co-ordinate with one another, you’re likely to end up with a wildly coloured and blinding-if-you’ve-not-slept-enough-last-night piece of art. Go with it.
And this leads us to what I’m working on today:
But Maddy, what on earth is this meant to be? Haven’t the foggiest. It might wind up as a housecoat, or an afghan, or perhaps a rug to go under my desk. It’s probably not a scarf. What it ultimately becomes will depend on my mood, how much scrap winds up going into it, and when I feel like I’m finished.
How about you? How to you like to use up your scrap bits of yarn?
Be happy, healthy, and safe!