If I design a crochet pattern and don't want to keep or donate the finished item, I will often unravel it and make something new with the same yarn. These four items are examples of different designs made using the same yarn over again. I like to reuse as much as possible before buying new; this is just another way I'm trying to make my craft more sustainable.
April is National Stress Awareness Month and the Craft Yarn Council wants to help you unwind with your needles and hooks. Crochet and other crafty hobbies have been proven to have a positive impact on our health and wellness, check out these stats from the Craft Yarn Council:
68% of people claim that their mood improves after they knit or crochet
85% of people who knit or crochet experience stress reduction
94% of people who knit or crochet say the skill helps them to relax
51% of knitters and crocheters find that stitching in the morning improves their day
If you want to learn more about the health benefits of crochet or get the free pattern for this year's stitch away stress project, check out the Craft Yarn Council.
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If you have a bunch of random scraps of yarn and fiber hanging around, this DIY bird nester is a great Spring project. All you need is a tea light lantern, some scrap fiber, and a 20 inch piece of yarn or twine.
1. Stuff the tea light full of yarn, fiber, fabric, or string; all natural materials are best in order to be eco-friendly. I used raw wool, cotton and wool yarn pieces, and cotton thread. Make sure the pieces are small and lightly packed so they are easy for the birds to grab.
2. Close the top of the tea light and tie the 20 inch piece of yarn or twine to the top ring.
3. Hang from a branch in your yard and watch the birds come snag pieces for their nests!
Celebrate Etsy's female artists and entrepreneurs this Women's History Month!
Crafting hobbies are a great way to relax; they can also provide health benefits for the body and mind. Check out this article on the lion brand blog for a list of the top 10 health benefits of crocheting.
Wool is a wonderful material; it is a natural and beautiful fiber, it works with your body to keep you warm, and it continues to bloom and soften as time passes. BUT, woolens sometimes require special care. Below are instructions for what I believe to be the best way to wash and store your woolens.
1. Choose a gentle, non lathering wool wash (My favorite is Eucalan Lavender Delicate Wash).
2. Fill a bucket or sink with lukewarm water (about 2-3 gallons). Water that is too hot or cold could felt the wool or alter the color of your item.
3. Pour 1 Tbsp. of wool wash into the water and swirl with your hand to distribute.
4. Drop your item into the water and gently tap it down to submerge.
5. Let your item sit in the water for about 15-25 minutes depending on how dirty it is.
6. Pull your item from the water (wool fibers are delicate when wet so be gentle). Squeeze the item to get rid of excess water (don't twist or wring - again, be gentle).
7. Lay your item flat on a large towel, cover it with another towel, and roll it up , gently pressing so the towels absorb excess water.
8. Unroll the item, reshape it, lay it flat on a new towel, and let it air dry.
1. Gently fold your item and store it flat on a shelf, in a drawer, or in a tote. Do not hang woolens because they tend to stretch out on hangers.
2. Make sure you wash your woolens before storing them for the season, moths and pests are more attracted to soiled items. I also like to store my woolens with lavender sachets as a natural mothball alternative.