May 6, 2015

25 There Was A Whole Pullover In There?? Using Scraps For Ombré Magic

Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits


I have an Always Overflowing Scraps Basket (AOSB). It's like it came out of a scary fairy tale, a veritable horn of plenty refilling itself endlessly no matter what I desperately try to stashbust! Sadly, I can't blame elves for this... it's entirely and completely my fault. First, a knitting obsession inevitably fills the AOSB with "one-ball-wonder" leftovers. Second, I am THAT person who is always taking anything up for grabs in your knitting group, ostriching my head into a Goodwill bin or raiding a library swap basket (and <<oops>> forgetting to swap). Unknown? Scratchy? Fluorescently acrylic?! Gimme! I can do something with it, I swear!

I think.


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits
I took a lot out of this basket as you'll see below.

It came upon me that my AOSB was going to need a twin sister if I didn't make a marathon effort on my scraps. Like, a whole pullover effort. Flipping through the Winter 2014/2015 Vogue Knitting, I discovered this simple drop sleeve pullover by Marie Wallin:


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits


Two things caught my eye: 1) It was a 4-row slip stitch pattern with enough texture to hide weird color changes, and 2) it used two strands of aran weight yarn held together (in this case, Rowan Felted Tweed Aran). These two things would help solve the TWO MAJOR PROBLEMS with trying to make a pullover from bits and pieces of yarn:

PROBLEM #1: Make all the excuses you want, none of those colors actually go together. Yep, the likelihood of pulling out some amazing pullover-sized color combo out of a scraps basket is pretty much ZERO.

SOLUTION #1: Ombré, or, the blending of colors using shading. By having two strands of yarn in a slip stitch pattern, we suddenly have greatly increased our possible acceptable color combinations. With a single strand, you starkly go from blue to red -- with two, you go from blue to blue-purple to purple to purple-red to red.

PROBLEM #2: None of your scraps are the same weight and you are in for one lumpy dumpy pullover. Yep, we can't all have a scraps basket filled with every beautiful shade of Rowan Felted Tweed only.

SOLUTION #2: By having a 2X aran weight gauge, we can double, triple or even quadruple yarns to get better colorways and still come close to our gauge.


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits


So one afternoon during a pre-Spring thaw in Maine, I poured my AOSB out onto the deck and tried to find me some colorful ombré!


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits


At first I thought "rainbow". But then I don't really like to follow rules, and I didn't quite have the right shades anyway. Also, I had a ton of black, white and gray.


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits


ROYGBIV became YGRBIV.

I started knitting and was totally addicted. I seriously whipped this thing out.  I was just so pleased watching serious Stashbusting In Situ, À La Carte, IN REAL TIME.


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits


There was more to the excitement: each row reminded me of a project long past or an old friend who had gifted me yarn at swaps/parties/giveaways. It really was lovely to knit all this history together, some of this stuff was over 10 years old. I like to think of it as a sedimentary map, geology style:


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits


The stitch is a really simple 4-row repeat pattern. Here is a .jpg so you can save or Pin on Pinterest:


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits



I was able to accomplish the ombré look I wanted by always carrying one yarn through 2 repeats (8 rows). Basically, only one of two yarns changed for each repeat.

The pullover is still crazy, and obviously scrappy, but I'm really pleased that I managed to make this whole thing out of nothing!! I really think the ombré approach is the only way to go, and it's a concept that will work equally well in knit and crochet.


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits


And so after all this I ask you, very honestly and with wide dewy eyes... do I have yarn elves? Is it actually possible that I do??? Because I kid you not, despite creating this new bulky Scraptastic Sweater out of my scraps basket... IT STILL LOOKS COMPLETELY FULL! We just might have to play the 'how many jellybeans in a jar' game for this one, folks....


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits




See my Scraptastic pullover on Ravelry


Scraptastic Pullover I: a way to use your knitting scraps, by Dayana Knits





25 comments:

  1. This is awesome! I probably have a pullover worth of scraps too - I've knit some hats and mitts without making a dent.

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    1. Yeah -- most of the balls I used still have plenty left. SIGH! :D

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  2. I've just written down the 4 row repeat and put it into my bag of 4 ply oddments. I can see it making a good scarf. I will mention your lovely blog if I ever knit it.

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    1. Ooh goodie. To be more specific, the slipped stitch moves over for the next repeat (so they're not all in a row). i.e. K1, S1 for first repeat. K2, S1 for 2nd. Also, on the wrong side you'll have to bring the yarn to the front when you slip.

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    2. Thanks. I was just logging back in to ask if there should be an even or odd number of stitches on each row. I think I get it now. Just one last question. Did you slip stitches knitwise or purlwise?

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    3. Una -- I've just added a .jpg that you can save or Pin with the stitch pattern! Just scroll back through. :D

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    4. Thank you, Dayana, and good luck with the competition.

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  3. I love, love, love it. I have a stash just waiting for this inspiration.

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  4. My mind is very much on using stash right now, as mine is getting unruly. I have knit a scarf from leftovers and started a fingering weight blanket, but other than a swatch blanket, I had nothing for heavier weight yarn scraps. This is a wonderful idea! I also like that it's not a perfect rainbow. Great job, Dayana!

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  5. I love this! I'd never have thought of doing colour changes this way but I'm definitely going to try with some crochet! Thanks! xx

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  6. I am always amazed at what you come up. First a dollar store yarn sweater and now this. Inspiring!

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  7. Another fantastic creation! Love it! --Rita Z. :)

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  8. This is great! Wonderful idea to use odd yarns.

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  9. An impressive way to use your stash, and a testimony to your creativity and imagination.

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  10. Wooohooo!!!!! Sunnybunny made it into the quilt, I mean sweater :)

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  11. I just blogged about my ombre scarf and added a link to your blog, so you might be getting lots of new viewers. Here is my post
    http://bagsofwool.blogspot.co.uk/2015/06/the-ombre-scarf.html

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  12. Wow! I saw your blog on Una's blog and had to have a look-it's gorgeous! Sadly, I can't knit but I'd love to do this with crochet...

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  13. Just come over from Una's blog your sweater is amazing what a great technique, good luck with the competition and by the way I have several AOSBs too. :)

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Linda, for coming by! As for the contest, they didn't even give me one of the FIVE honorable mentions. I entered with (what I thought was) a great post about Planned Pooling last year too, and nothing!

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  14. I am inspired. This isn't a new concept to me, but you present it with such aplomb (and humor) I now need to do this. Like right now. No need to wait for my scraps to grow. I can't wait to get busy using my overflowing new-yarn stash to make some great looking, unique things. Also, I'll be following your blog from now on. Can't wait to read more of your wonderful ideas.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for coming by! You know, I am now Pinning like mad on Pinterest anything that resembles a sweater stash buster. I'm also buying sweater quantities regularly, but you know what? I think I'm going to do another scrap buster first!!

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  15. Fun! Years ago I made a lancet from scraps. I started off thinking it would completely demolish my scraps and at the end,when it had only made a dent, I then made a second blanket. Lots of wool left over ... And more since.

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    Replies
    1. Yes, and I have made a pullover 3X the size of this one since... AND IT'S STILL FULL!! :D

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Thanks for your comment! :)

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