DIY Unique Yarn Storage

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Hey there, Hackers! Tis your intrepid ScribeSarah, back with some tips on how to keep your crafting space clear and organized. Now, even little ol’ anal-retentive me gets her home a little messy with all her little projects but there are ways you can get that chaos organized, even if it doesn’t always look like it. While I tend to be a bit of a jack of all trades in the craft arena, for today’s exercise, I thought we would focus on ways to keep your yarn both accessible and stowed so that it’s not taking over your home.

There are quick and easy ways to store your yarns and threads, most of which you can find at your local Container Store (a place I am not allowed to go unsupervised because I will buy all the things). However, if you’re looking for something a little less ordinary (and costly), there are a bunch of things out there that you can use or re-purpose for these needs.

For yarn that isn’t being used currently (or for that yarn you found you just couldn’t leave the craft store without despite not having a specific project you bought it for), you could use old wicker/weaved baskets. My grandmother had a ton of these just hiding in her cupboards and when she passed away, rather than donate them to the Goodwill, I kept and re-purposed them. Some I use for small balls of yarn (leftovers from projects past) and some I use to keep finished projects. These can be decorative and left out by a chair or sofa or can be standard square that fits in a closet or on a shelf easily.

Another thing that gives your not-being-used yarn a happy and somewhatImage result for vintage suitcase retro home is to put those old suitcases to work. Vintage suitcases are a beautiful way to store these items that still look neat and classy. They fit in closets, under beds or sofas, but still show off a little glamor when pulled out for use. They can also be stacked decoratively in a corner or on a shelf (e.g. hat boxes, etc). You can line old suitcases with any fabric you like too, so the inside as well as the outside has a special sort of flare.

If you like assembling items, this next item is for you. Simple pegboard and hooks are a fabulous way to store your yarn while still keeping it readily accessible and easy to use. You can customize size, shape, even color quite easily and load as many or as few skeins onto a board as you see fit. You can also create many small boards to mount along the wall of your craft room in a funky design or pattern. The sky’s the limit with this option and it works best if you have a dedicated craft area or room.  For an easy-to-follow tutorial, check out Dwell Beautiful’s step-by-step instructions here.

Coffee cans are a fun, decorative way to store yarn you are currently using on projects. They come in various sizes and, depending on how much coffee you consume, you may have a restoring supply. You can paint or decoupage the outside of each can, simply slice a small hole in the lid of the can, then place the ball or skein in the can and thread the end through the lid. Glue guns, glitter, rhinestones, shelf lining paper and yarn itself are also fun ways to decorate the outsides of the cans. Not only does this give you storage, it is also an inexpensive yarn holder. But if you don’t want tons of coffee cans just sitting around your space, you can also mount them on the wall (without the lids).

Image result for coffee can yarn

And finally, we come to milk crates. These may be a little harder to come by but they give you a great way to create your own yarn shelves. They are stackable, come in different colors and can be used in small and large spaces equally as well. Got a lot of yarn? Just keep stacking on the crates until you have a place for it all. For this idea, I recommend using an anchor of sorts when stacking against a wall; the higher you stack the crates, the more likely it is that the whole thing could topple over. You will also want to lash the crates together as well to make your yarn storage sturdier.

Image result for milk crate yarn storage

These are just a few ways to take items you may have either laying around the house or are easy and inexpensive to acquire and use them to organize your space. But don’t stop there. Look around you. You never know when inspiration will strike. That random item that’s just collecting dust in the corner may be the next great organizational tool in your crafting adventures.

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DIY Pom Pom Rug

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Got a nice simple project today with spring break coming up for many. It’s a super cute and easy DIY rug that would work great in the kitchen, kid’s room, or heck even a dorm room.

Here’s your materials list:

  • 4-6 yarn balls (thick or ultra thick)
  • Large container lid, chair back or other household item to wrap yarn around
  • Scissors
  • Rug base canvas

And if you don’t like videos, you can find the full written out steps here on Hello Giggles. 😀


Huge Yarn Balls for Giant Made Items

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Ever looked at an afghan and gone, “yeah, it’s nice and all, but I wish the stitches didn’t look so small.” Well, one Etsy user has your solution.

Ohhio, creates and sells 100% wool yarn balls, and the needles, with yarn that is so thick that each row is 2-3″ tall. I cannot imagine working with 40mm needles, but wow that blanket would be done crazy fast if you were good at it.

She makes a large variety of colors and has helpfully included info for how many skeins/balls you’d need to make certain projects either with her custom wooden needles, or by just using your arms! If I could find an equally sized crochet hook I’d be all over trying these. 😀 Just make sure that you pay attention to the delivery time when ordering. This artist lives in Ukraine and it can take several weeks to reach you. Basically plan now for all your holiday needs. 😉

-Nicole


Crocheted Doctor Who Blanket

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Yup. You read the title correctly. This piece was entirely crocheted by the lovely lady on the left there, Bridgette McKenna. Made using (what looks like) double crochet and 5 different colors, this is quite the massive blanket! The subject is David Tennant as the Doctor from the popular Sci-Fi show Doctor Who, and looks to be about a double size blanket. Bridgette admits to making it so she can snuggle under it while watching Doctor Who. Doing color changes like this are incredibly time consuming and I can only imagine how many weeks/months she worked on this during the winter. Incredible job making and pixelating a face out of yarn! You can see her posting of it to the Doctor Who Hub Group on Facebook for all the lovely comments people have been leaving. 🙂

~Nicole


Yarn Stash Part 2

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So yesterday I went on about keeping track of your stash on your phone since that’s my preferred method, but what if you don’t have a smart phone? Well, if you have an internet connection, then there are still options out there for you. 🙂

While their mobile app may not work for ios devices, their website still offers a great way to keep a digital catalog of all your yarn. It lets you sort by color, weight, fiber, amount, and most importantly to me; shows which yarns you’ve used up and are out of! Ravelry is a great community for yarn workers as well so you can also store the pattern you are using or even mark your yarn as up for sale/trade if it’s something you won’t use but can no longer return. Every time a user enters a new yarn it gets added to their database for everyone to reference so it’s really quite an extensive collection. The only downside to all this being…what if you cannot access it?

 

Whether you just want a physical back up or prefer to keep record in a physical way, Look at what I made has you covered with her great yarn binder DIY. Simply head on over to the posting here where she has created a beautiful template for free use that allows you to attach a bit of your yarn to the page (she laminated hers, but you don’t have to if you use thick paper) so that you can easily see, compare, and feel what yarns you have along with the record of their color/brand/dye lot. There are even open sections for you to add a bit of the label on to the page itself!

Never wonder what those washing instructions were again! XD As long as your goal is to organize and take control of your yarn mess stash then there’s really no wrong way to go about it. Hopefully these tools will help those who have been feeling a bit overwhelmed by the prospect though. 🙂

~Nicole


Yarn Stash Apps

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So unlike fabric apps, I’ve had a very hard time finding a good app for my phone that will let me log and keep track of yarn that I’m working with or how much I have stored. I’ve been giving a few of them a try the last two months so I thought I’d share my findings with my fellow yarn workers. 🙂

Quick note, my cell is an iphone so I’ve only been testing apps on the apple market place. I will make note if that app is not available on android though.

Stash2Go

stash2go

As with most apps available, this one is designed for knitters, with add on options for crocheters….how kind. While this app seemed to have it all for the pictures (stash info, current projects, even linking to a ravelry account) it does not work. Got it to open and it would continue to freeze anytime I tried to use it. I don’t know if they just haven’t bothered updating it or why it does this but it just would not work. For those on android though, the reviews says good things about that version (And it’s free!) so it’s worth the download and test at least.

 

Mind my Stash

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This is quite literally the only other program available on the iphone app store for keeping track of your yarn stash. All the others that may even seem like it…nay. They are just pattern collections, or allow you to access ravelry patterns. Which is all fine and good but….not a yarn stash minder. This one does cost $3 but it does a decent job at what it set out to do. Keep track of your yarn.

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I’m still fiddling with how I want the info displayed as some fields aren’t intuitive (should name be the color name? or should it be the yarn style name when a color field exists farther down?), but overall this does the minimum of what I want. Lets me put in how much yarn I have in storage so I know what I’m working from or have to pull when the current skein runs out. It’s easy to toggle between metric or imperial info and even does the math for what the total yardage/oz you have on hand. I also like that it let me take my own pictures of the yarn as well so I could put them under whatever light I need to make the image look as close as possible to the in life color. Once you’ve added a certain brand name/yarn fiber in that it didn’t have before it will remember it, and you can even go into the settings and delete some of the pre-loaded ones that don’t exist in your area. I also like that I can keep track of the hooks (or needles) I own and that it doesn’t assume you only knit or crochet; it allows info for both.

My complaints are fairly minor. I don’t like that the scroll down menu you see when you select your stash doesn’t have the color name listed. This could be a mistake on part by filling in fields wrong (meaning they want the color listed under color name and yarn name) but to me it just seems like a personal preference thing. I’ll likely make a fix of it on my own in how I fill out my fields. I also wish I had a better way to say I have a yarn of that color in use while having x amount in storage. All minor complaints though.

It is not available on the android store. The closest I could find was Yarn inventory, but the pictures don’t say much and it has mixed reviews. It only cost $1 though so not much risk if it is lack luster. I really wish there were more apps out there so this list was longer but sadly we are not high up on the programming demand chain. Even the android market really only had 2 options for yarn stash organization. 🙁


Knit Dragon Wings Shawl

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The air is just starting to cool here on the east coast so I thought this would be a great time to share this pattern. That way it gives you a few weeks to make one for yourself before the weather gets too cold. So keep yourself warm this fall the fun way by making yourself one of these really cool Dragon Wing inspired shawls!

You can buy the pattern for only $6 over on Ravelry and comes with instructions for large and small that way you can make them for your kids as well. 😀 I know I would have loved something like this as a kid. Well, I’d like something like this now too but I don’t knit….why are these cool things always a knit pattern and not crochet? I’ll show you, knitters. I’ll make my own crochet version! Ya know….when I have time…. 🙁

~Nicole


Roman Sock

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Before I met Nicole my exposure to knitting and crocheting included scarves, hats, sweaters, and blankets.  She exposed me to a whole new world that exists in yarn.  Now I see all of the potential that yarn can have, especially with animaguri.  Roman Sock creates some really cool animaguri featuring mostly animals.

    

She doesn’t sell the finished products though, she sells the patterns to these fantastic creations.  But not only does she sell her patterns, but she has free tutorials to a lot of other animaguri.

      

So if you want to take a look at her site and some of these free patterns yourself, head over to her page at http://littlegreen.typepad.com/romansock/.

-Toni


A wild Nicole appears!

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Hello everyone! As the title would suggest my name is Nicole, and I wanted to say a quick hello and welcome to everyone to the site. ^_^

For those of you who attended Awesome Con in DC last weekend, you will remember me as the lady at the table who made all the yarn items. I’ve been a casual crafter since my High School days, and after a very brief attempt at crocheting when I was 9, I decided to try it again during college when I was going to be house bound for 2 weeks to recover from a surgery. It took me 4 months to complete that first afghan I started then, and I still use the horribly made thing on my bed at home. 😉 After that first piece though, I began expanding my skill with crochet over the next few years; eventually leading me to plush making. It was something I had passed over before since the designs in books and online hardly ever appealed to my tastes, when I decided to just pick up a book about it and try making my own.

Thanks to my friends encouragement, and the opportunity my friend Toni offered me, I started testing the waters for interest in my designs, and was pleasantly surprised to get a very positive response to them at MagFest 2012. Since then, I’ve been partnering with Toni at several cons and have finally built my business up enough that I will be running it full time starting this May. ^_^ You can find my deviantart gallery here to see my collection to date, and my etsy store here (though it is down until my site launch in May). I look forward to showing everyone all the wonderful things I’ve found in a wide array of mediums, as well as helping new members refine and build their business!