Updated: Apr 20, 2021
Hi there! The Learn to Knit Stitch Series is drawing to a close in just a few days. This post is Part 1 of Part 10, and the next/last will be Part 2 of Part 10 (yikes). Today we're covering a few ideas for transforming your leftover stitch squares and rectangles (knitted or crocheted) into beautiful and functional everyday projects. These are all so simple and great ways to get rid of lingering swatches for good.
Before we get into part one of the tenth post in the Learn to Knit Series, I have a super quick message for you. We display advertisements on this page using third-party cookies to show content relevant to you. This helps us provide this free blog post tutorial. Thank you for being here and enjoy the article!
At the closing of the Learn to Knit Beginner Stitch Series, you're bound to have a few swatches from weeks of practice. These can take up much-needed space for yarn and other supplies, as you may have experienced already. It is quite a waste of yarn to trash your swatches, but it's also a waste to leave them unused! In this post, you'll find plenty of solutions to this dilemma- 6 ways to transform a knitted rectangle or square (of any stitch) into something beautiful.
We'll start with the simplest project and finish with the hardest (although they are all manageable)!
In this example, we turned a 2x2 ribbing swatch into a coaster.
This project is so easy. If you have any knitted square with side lengths of 3-4 inches, then you're finished!
I love turning leftover swatches into coasters because they're functional and decorative, especially if it's a textured stitch like this one.
These are also great last-minute birthday gifts!
In this example, we turned a dot/sand stitch swatch into a bow.
For this project, you need a knitted rectangle of any size and a small amount of yarn.
With one hand pinch the center of the swatch (on the long side), and in your other hand have the yarn ready. Begin wrapping the yarn around the pinched area, making sure to cross over the starting yarn tail multiple times. Continue winding until the bow closely resembles the picture above.
Snip the yarn and tuck it under the yarn windings.
An alternative option is to use another thin rectangle to enclose the pinched center. In this case, you would sew the opposite ends of the strip together once it is around the bow and finish by hiding the tail.
These hand-made bows have so many uses, from spicing up a plain shirt to dressing your dog for an event. Percy here looks very stylish and sophisticated adorning his purple bow.
You'll need two four-sided swatches of the same size. For this mini pillow, we cast on about 40 stitches for each swatch. For a medium to large-sized pillow, the stitch count should be between 60 and 70.
Using an embroidery needle or a sewing machine, stitch around the perimeter of both pieces.
When there are about 3 inches left to sew, inside-out your work. Stuff the pillow using a filler of your choice, such as Poly-Fil Stuffing.
Close up the remaining three inches with your yarn or thread, taking care to match the look of the seam already present. Snip the yarn, hide the tail, and voila! Your very own pillow.
To the left is me (Sarah) hugging my hand-made pillow.
4. Coin Purse
In this example, we turned a stockinette stitch swatch into a coin purse.
For this cute and handy project, you'll need a knitted rectangle about 3 x 6 inches, a button, a needle & thread, an embroidery needle & yarn, and some pins (optional).
Start by folding the short side of the swatch up about 2.5 inches (pin the fold here if you would like). Using the embroidery needle and yarn, sew the edges together. Leave the middle open.
Next, sew the button just above the crease at the bottom of the coin purse. Peek at the picture above for guidance.
Lastly, with an embroidery needle and a small amount of yarn, create a loop at the center edge of the flap. Tie a knot around the loop and hide the yarn tail.
Isn't this so cute? You can carry it around everywhere!
You can use a bigger swatch to make this too. If the side lengths are proportional to 3 x 6 (for example, 6 x 12), you can use it and follow the same instructions.
5. Glasses Case
In this example, we turned a square 1x1 ribbing swatch into a glasses case.
You'll need the same materials as the coin purse project requires except the swatch, which must be square and not rectangle. Here we used a 6 x 6-inch piece for a small pair of glasses. A 6.5 or 7-inch side length works well for a medium or large-sized pair, respectively.
Begin by folding one side in about 2.5 inches (pin the fold here if you would like). Using the embroidery needle and yarn, stitch the sides together. Leave the middle open.
Next, sew the button to the coin purse. The center should be 3 to 4 rows from the bottom.
To finish, create the same loop as we did with the coin purse. In this project, we tied a bow around the loop instead of a knot. Tie the bow like you would with shoelaces.
That's it! Now you can protect your glasses in style with this hip case.
6. Bunny Stuffed Animal
Who knew you could make a stuffed animal out of... a square!? That's right. This adorable bunny is made out of one garter stitch swatch- no strings attached (pun intended 😜).
Make sure you have a knitted square of any size, some yarn, an embroidery needle, and stuffing. Spice up your bunny with a pair of plastic eyes and a pom-pom.
To make this rabbit, watch the video tutorial linked here. Ask us any questions you have as you go through the project! It's not difficult, but harder than the other ideas here.
That just about wraps up our blog post for today! Again, don't hesitate to contact us with any questions. We would also love to hear suggestions for what we can add to this post! Hit us with a comment down below or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show off your project on the Pin for this post (coming soon) by entering a picture under the "tried this pin" prompt. Make sure to save the pin for later so you can come back to it!
We hope you enjoyed this post and found value in it! See you in the very last post of the series...