I’ve mentioned that my saving of scraps of just about anything (yarn, fabrics, carding waste etc) knows no bounds, see  Remnants and scraps: When are they too small to use?  After using fabric remnants to make curtains I’ve finally come round to using up another class of scrap or remnant – the scraps of yarn left over from sewing in ends into a granny square blanket.

I’m rather fond of some tweedy wool I have in my yarn stash and wanted to make yarn like it myself, so I’d saved these scraps with the idea that I would snip them into little pieces and add into wool during carding to achieve a tweedy effect.

The granny square blanket project has been an on-and-off affair. Deliberately, I should add, as it’s handy to have a project on the go when you need something that’s portable, easy to pick up, and kind of mindless in a nice way. Anyway, I digress. I’d got to a point where I thought that a round of squares fringed in dark, chocolate brown needed breaking up with some squares which weren’t so solid dark brown: a little mottled, and yes, tweedy. So, the bag of scraps was unearthed.

My first task was to spit the yarn ends into single strands as I thought that the dk/light worsted weight would be too thick to wind itself into the yarn during spinning. It proved to be time consuming, but not in a bad way as it’s that mindless activity again that has its place – this time whilst watching tv.

I then snipped the pile of scraps into short lengths in no time at all, and mixed them into a carded batt made up of Black Welsh and Shetland Moorit combed tops and small slivers of pink carding waste to make a delightful fluffy pile. The pink carding waste is left over from fleece dyed with the exhaust from a madder dye bath .

carded batt incorporating scraps

And so I began to spin (this time on a drop spindle), but it didn’t take long to realise that the wool scraps were slightly too long and seemed determined to escape being entirely trapped into the new yarn. All well and good for an art yarn where random loose ends are ‘de rigeur’, but that wasn’t the effect I was looking for.

Back to the drawing board. This time I got scissor-happy and snipped the yarn scrap pile into 1cm long smaller piles, and this time -success!

homespun tweedy yarn
Left: home-spun yarn from trash batts; Right – shop-bought yarn

The squares fringed with this wool merged in nicely with the solid dark brown:

Meanwhile, the on-going crochet blanket has not been one of those projects where I feel I have to wait an age to appreciate the results, as it is already in use as a lap-warmer…. just one that grows a little when I have spare time to add on a few more squares whilst in the middle of something else.

The something else is pattern drafting and sewing. More on that another time.