(And you can too!)
I have a lot of yarn in my stash, and sometimes I just want a quick project. I had some great bright blue yarn (Caron Simply Soft Quick in Blue Mint) that I love. It’s bulky, and I just could not figure out what crochet stitch would work for it — as well as keep the awesome look that the yarn has by itself.
Enter the sewn scarf.
To start with, I cut 50 million strands of yarn to the proper length for my scarf. Not really — just around 36. This made a skinny scarf of around 3″ wide, so if you want a wider scarf or if you are using skinnier yarn, then cut more strands. I found the right length by laying out a scarf I already had and measuring against that. Don’t worry if your strands aren’t all exactly the same length — you’ll trim them later.
Start a few inches in from the clothes hanger (or whatever you use to secure your strands) so that you have tassels! Length of tassels is up to you — mine are 4-5″ long. Because my yarn was so bulky, I didn’t lower the presser foot. This led to some finicky sewing in some places because the needle would sometimes push the yarn into the bobbin space (I don’t know technical sewing terms). So take it slow and be careful. That being said — it was really super easy.
One really awesome thing about this is that you can do all kinds of color combinations. You could do contrasting thread like I did (I had pink thread handy, so that’s what I used), or you could even use two colors of yarn and do stripes or alternate the colors of the strands before you sew … I could make a million of these.
When I sewed, I would sew “forward” — pushing the yarn away from me, which would make the thread come forward, if that makes any sense — and then I would sew “backward” — using the function of my machine that, well, makes the needle move backward as I bring the yarn toward me. In some places (not consistently, as the imperfection is what is so perfect about this scarf) I made sure to do an extra stitch on either side to properly secure the outermost strands of yarn to the rest of the scarf. It makes more sense when you are doing it, I think.
I ended up with what you can see here after a little bit of sewing. I tried to do the sewn parts a fair distance apart, but they ended up too far apart and it just looked like I had looped a whole skein of yarn around my neck. Maybe that look will be in next fall, but I haven’t seen it on the catwalks lately.
So back on the machine it went. This time, I stitched in between all the previously-stitched parts so that the whole scarf is stitched. I threw in some diagonal stitches here and there, which you can kind of see in the picture. The all-over stitching gives the scarf a woven look, like it was created on a loom. I thought it would end up being stiff, but it’s still quite soft and extra cozy.
Now I am planning to go through my stash and find random combinations of yarn to stitch together. These would be perfect for gifts (if I hadn’t already given everybody a scarf already) or for charity. A couple of years ago I crocheted a bunch of simple scarves for the local nursing home residents so that they could all have a Christmas gift. I think I will churn out some of these babies — much less time consuming than crocheting, although not nearly as easy to do in front of the TV.
Let me know if you make one — I can’t wait to see what you come up with!