In knitting, some patterns mention the use of waste yarns. So what are these? Waste yarns are the leftover or scrap yarns that are different from the yarns you use for your projects.
You also put stitches on these yarns but they only act as stitch holders. Waste yarns, scrap yarns, and waste knitting are all the same. The waste yarns have the same weight as the working yarn but of a different color.
You use the waste yarn either at the beginning or at the end of your knitting project. You remove this waste yarn once you finish the steps that need it. This scrap yarn is not part of your finished project.
What Is Scrap Yarn In Knitting?
The term scrap yarn knitting is the same as the waste yarn knitting. This is the process where you need to use a scar or leftover yarn.
The weight of your yarn and your waste yarn must be the same. The scrap yarn knitting is often useful when you make provisional cast-on. Again, the scrap yarn is not part of your actual project.
You will need to remove this scrap yarn once you have completed the project. Below is the process to make your provisional cast-on using scrap yarn knitting.
You will need these materials.
- Knitting needles
- Crochet hook
- Scrap yarn with the same weight as your working yarn
- Working yarn
- Make a slip knot with the scrap yarn. Leave a bit of yarn tail so you can weave in later. Put the slip knot on your crochet hook.
- Put the crochet hook over your knitting needle. Put the scrap or waste yarn from the back of your knitting needle.
- Put your scrap yarn around your hook.
- Now, pull your scrap yarn into the loop on the hook, creating a stitch on your needle. At this point, you have made one chain stitch.
- Continue steps 2 to 4 until you reach your desired number of stitches. Keep in mind that this number is the number of stitches the pattern instructed you to cast on.
- Since you will unravel this later, use your crochet hook to chain two extra stitches at the end. This will give you a bit of allowance when you pull out the chain at the end.
- Trim the scrap yarn. Insert the yarn tail into the last stitch on the knitting needle. Another option is to pull out a big loop after your last chain. This way you can reuse your yarn Set aside your crochet hook.
- Then, take the other knitting needle and your working yarn. Begin stitching with your working yarn color. Make sure to leave a long tail on your working yarn for weaving.
- Knit the entire chain. Follow the pattern instructions for your Row 1. If it instructs you to knit the entire row, then knit across row 1.
- Continue knitting your project by following the steps in your pattern.
- When you complete the project, you need to remove the provisional chain. What you need to do is pull the yarn end of the last chain stitch. Tug on it until you unravel the chain and you begin to see live stitches.
- When you see one or two live stitches, stop for a while. Get your knitting needle and slide it into the live stitches so they will not drop. Continue this as you work across the chain.
- When you get to the end of the stitches, you will see the slip knot you created in step 1. Untie this knot by pulling the yarn. Then pull the scrap yarn out of your project. Put it aside.
- Once you reach the end of your chain, you will notice that all the stitches are on your knitting needle.
You may now add length to your project, or connect it to a different set of live stitches.
How Do You Transfer Stitches To Waste Yarn?
The previous chapter taught you to make a cast-on using your scrap or waste yarn. The steps used both knitting needles and a crochet hook. In this chapter, you will learn to transfer stitches without using the crochet hook.
- Arrange your waste yarn in your hand as if you will knit with it. The short end of the waste yarn is where your working yarn would flow from.
- Then, knit two together (Ktog) as many stitches as you want.
- After you have made your desired stitches, pull at your knitted stitches. Use your working yarn to pull the stitches.
- Tug on it until the short end of the waste yarn pops out.
- Now, you will see that the stitches are coinciding with your waste yarn.
How To Do A Tubular Cast-On With Waste Yarn?
Tubular cast-on gives you a clean edge for k1, p1 ribbing. Although you can use other ways to achieve this neat edge, the waste yarn tubular cast-on is easier.
It only consists of five rows and it creates a tension that is the same as the ribbing gauge.
Below are the steps on how you can make a tubular cast-on with waste yarn.
- Start by casting on the waste yarn. Cast-on only half of the number of stitches you need, then add an extra 1 stitch.
- For this tutorial, you will be using 13 stitches 12 stitches plus the extra 1. The actual number of stitches for this is 24 stitches.
- After you have created the 13 stitches, you can now start with row 1.
- Start row 1 by knitting 1 stitch and the yarn over. Continue this process for the entire row. When you finish the entire row, there will be 25 stitches.
- Next is your second row. Start row 2 by making a purl stitch using the yarn in front. Then, put the yarn back and knit the yarn over. Continue this on the entire row. Slip the last stitch for your next row.
- For your third row, knit with the yarn behind. Make 1 purl stitch with the yarn in front. Continue the process in the entire row. Knit the last stitch for your next row.
- Slip a purl stitch with your front yarn. Then, move the yarn behind then knit the following stitch. Continue working on the entire row.
- For the fifth row, repeat the process you did in row 3. Work on the entire row 5.
- This completed your double knit foundation. Now, you start with row 6.
- Begin your 1 X 1 rib stitch (knit 1 purl 1). Keep in mind that you are working on the reverse side of the project, so start with purl stitch then knit. The final stitch must be a purl stitch.
- Continue working on the project using the k1 p1 rib stitch. Once you finish, get ready to remove the waste yarn.
There are two ways to remove the waste yarn. You can trim it or unravel it.
If you choose to cut the waste yarn, use a small scissor. Be careful not to hit or cut the yarn of the project.
In case you want to unravel the waste yarn. This is how to do it. Get the waste yarn at the edge of your cast-on. Then, pull the end through the loops. Be careful not to tug on it too tight so you will not deform your stitches.
The waste yarn will not unravel the same way when you remove it from a provisional cast-on.
How To Do A Tubular Cast-On Without Waste Yarn?
If you want to make a tubular cast-on without using the waste yarn, follow these steps.
- Get a length of yarn that is 3 or 4 times the width of your project. Make a slipknot.
- Then, thread the slipknot on your needle. While you hold the needle with your right hand, get the yarn and the tail using your left hand.
- Slide the needle underneath the yarn from your left index finger. Make sure to do this from back to front motion.
- Pull to get the slack. This is your first purl stitch cast-on. You know that it is a purl stitch because of the tiny bump under the stitch.
At this point, you are going to start your knit stitch.
- Moving front to back, get the yarn from your thumb. Get the yarn from your index finger from back to front and create a loop. Bring the needle underneath the yarn from your thumb.
- Pull and take the slack. Here, you will notice that the stitch you cast-on is a knit stitch.
- Continue these steps until you have cast on your desired number of stitches.
- Secure the last cast-on stitch. Twist the tail around your working yarn twice.
At this point, you will be working two foundation rows.
- Before you begin, keep in mind that for every knit stitch, you must knit 1 from the back loop. Meanwhile, for every purl stitch, you must slip 1 to the yarn in front.
- Start your row 1 by knitting 1 from the loop behind and slip 1 with the front. Continue working on the entire row.
If your cast-on has an odd number of stitches, your first row will end with a knit 1 stitch.
- Start your row 2 by knitting 1 then slip 1 with your front yarn. Continue working on the entire row.
- Turn your work and continue the process using the regular k1, p1 rib stitch.
- When you finish, weave the ends. Use the tail of the ends and join the two sides of the cast-on edge.
How To Do An Afterthought Heel With Waste Yarn?
The afterthought heel is a good replacement for the gusset heel in socks. You add this afterthought heel after you completed the socks from the body to the toes.
The afterthought heel is also easy to replace when it wears off. You can also add this as part of the socks design. These are the steps to do this.
At the end of the leg of the socks, get a waste yarn similar to the weight of your socks yarn. Then, knit it half the number of the stitches
- Slip the stitches back to your left needle but do not twist. Again, knit the stitches in your working yarn until you reach the toe part.
- When you finish the toe part, recover the stitches that you will use for the heel.
- Take out the waste yarn, and put the live stitches on your two double-pointed needles.
- The heel opening should have the same number of stitches as the body of the socks.
- Arrange the stitches on your four knitting needles
- Put markers on the side of each edge of the heel opening. This marks your decreasing point.
- Then, decrease the heel as you do in the basic round toe.
- Finish the decrease when you only have 2 inches of stitches remaining.
- Connect them using the Kitchener Stitch.
You have completed your afterthought heel. Now, your socks look extra chic.
How To Slip Stitches Onto Waste Yarn?
To explain the process, let’s assume that you are knitting a mitten on round 11 on the pattern.
After the round is complete, get your waste yarn and position it as if you are knitting it.
- Before you start round 12, first you need to knit 8 stitches on the waste yarn.
- Then, slip these 8 stitches of waste yarn back to your left-hand needle.
- Once you have the stitches on your left needle, knit your round 12 through your waste yarn. Continue knitting until you complete the mitt pattern.
That is it, you have slipped stitches onto your waste yarn.
Working on waste yarn can sound intimidating. Well, that is not the case. The waste yarn knitting is an easier option, especially when making socks and mittens. Using this technique removes the hassle of making the gusset of the socks.
This process allows you to knit the heels of the socks and afterthought thumbs easier. It also reduces the stress of knitting such challenging sections of your projects.
When you knit socks, give this waste yarn knitting a try. You will see how easy it is to do.
what if… what if you attempted to use waste yarn and knit together the stitches together. I am attempting a mitten, it is an awesome color work olive branch/owl pattern. First attempt with color work BUT I stitched the stitches for the thumb together. How can I fix that.