Where has the year gone-it’s the festive season once again. I’ve decided it’s time to think about creating some Xmas spirit in my home and to decorate with yarn. Leftover yarn works really well. I created yarn balls for the tree, by forming balls of yarn in a variety of sizes and colors. You could even create a particular theme, maybe using one color or whatever you desire. I found the fine metal hook hangers used for Xmas ornaments are good for attaching to the ball. Ribbon, yarn, or I-cord can also be used as hangers.
The following is a pattern for knitting a decoration using sock yarn and styrofoam balls. Simply knit up tubes with double pointed needles to cover styrofoam balls and close up the ends.
Materials: Sock or fingering yarn, double pointed needles (size to obtain gauge), styrofoam balls [I used 2″(5cm) and 4″(10cm)], ornament hangers
Gauge: Determine gauge for each type of sock yarn used. Measure the circumference of styrofoam ball, by placing tape measure around center of ball. For example, if the stitch gauge is 6 stitches per inch on 3.50mm needles, and the circumference of a 2″ ball is 6.25″, then 6.25 x 6 sts=39sts. Cast on 39 stitches with 3.50mm double pointed needles. Join to form round. Knit in stockinette stitch for 2 1/4″ for a 2″ ball, and 4 1/2″ for a 4″ ball. Bind off.
Finishing: Using a double length of yarn, baste every 4 stitches around bottom edge of tube. Stretching to fit, place ball in tube. Repeat basting around top edge. Pull taut to gather basting thread at top and bottom. Tie off and weave in loose yarn. Apply ornament hanger.
©Urban Knitters 2011
It doesn’t have to be Xmas to use yarn to decorate your home. I’ve made yarn balls in a variety of colors, texture, and sizes; and placed them in glass bowls. I’ve also created textile art incorporating yarn and paint applied to artist’s canvas.
I saw a clever use of yarn balls in a table setting on the TV show Steven and Chris (www.cbc.ca/stevenandchris). Yarn balls were used to hold name tags or cutlery.
I hope these suggestions will inspire you to use leftover yarn in creative ways. Please feel free to share your yarn decoration ideas.