I recently added sets of mini yarn skeins to my shop, and I thought it would be a good idea to share some ideas for what you can do with just 10 metres or yarn or less (10 metres is just over 10 yards), because it’s more than you might think!
This post looks at ideas for using up small quantities of yarn to make small but complete crochet projects, You can also of course turn your scrap yarn – even the very smallest lengths – into longer lengths by knotting or splicing it together into what is sometimes known as a magic yarn ball. This then allows you to create large items like scrap yarn scarves and scrap yarn blankets. This is a great tutorial on making a magic yarn ball by My Poppet Makes.
Of course I had to mention granny squares – after all, the reason these have been made for years (possible centuries) is precisely because they allow you to use up those small lengths of yarn.
Each of these cute granny squares used less than 5m of cotton DK (light worsted weight) yarn:
The above granny squares are made in the same way as traditional granny squares, but using htr (US: hdc) stitches grouped in pairs. Together they will make a cute mat for a console table, or for under a vase.
Here are some traditional granny squares (made using tr (US: dc) stitches in groups of three) each made with less than 10m of DK (light worsted weight) woollen yarn.
Sometimes I wonder if we crocheters could pick up an idea from quilters. I know quilters sometimes cut and even piece small blocks from their scraps as the scraps are created – so they don’t store odd shapes/lengths of fabric, they store pieced blocks of a certain size ready to make into a quilt.
Maybe we crocheters could do the same: when you finish a project, instead of storing the leftover yarn as a ball of yarn of indeterminate length, immediately make granny squares out of it until it is all used up, and then store the granny squares instead. All it needs is that you have a pattern ready for each weight of yarn (you’d only do this with the most common yarn weights you use), so you know that with any leftover DK yarn you make such-and-such a square, and with any leftover Aran yarn you make this such-and-such other square. Then you would store the squares according to the yarn weight/square size, and probably by fibre too – one pile for wool blend yarns, one for cotton blend yarns. When you’ve a good number in any one stash you can whip up a blanket. I think there is definitely something in this idea! Is anyone already doing this?
Leaves and Flowers
Leaves and flowers are popular motifs to make with leftover yarn, and can be added to your other project – hats, sweaters – made into brooches, or make lots and create a wreath or garland.
These maple leaves take around 6.5m of DK yarn with a 3.5mm hook. The oak leaf takes only 7m of Aran (worsted weight) yarn with a 4.5mm hook.
Most keyring crochet patterns, by virtue of their size, may be made with 10 metres of yarn or less. The great thing about crocheted keyrings is how light they are. My little cottage crochet pattern is perfect for a keyring, and you can have a lot of fun varying the colours you use:
If you have 10m of different colours of similar yarns, you have even more possibilities of course. This simple coaster took 10m of cream and 5m of teal DK (light worsted weight) cotton yarn, with a 4mm hook. The key to making a simple project like this look neat and ‘finished’ is the reverse dc (US: sc) edging – aka crab stitch. This is a great crochet crab stitch tutorial video on Moogly.
Buttons and tassels
Tassels are a great way of using small amounts of yarn – especially because they look great in a mixture of colours and even with a mixture of weights of yarn. Pompoms, on the other hand, need rather more than 10 metres of yarn, I find, if you want a good result.
Have you also thought about making buttons? This is a brilliant crochet button tutorial by A Creative Being.
Make-up remover pads, aka face scrubbies are another popular way to use up scraps of cotton, bamboo or linen yarn. Find my face scrubbies crochet pattern and matching bathroom items on Etsy, Ravelry or LoveCrafts.
I’m going to keep adding to this page as I have more ideas for small quantities of yarn to share. What are your favourite small crochet items to make?
Find my 10 metre mini yarn skeins in my shop here: