Image via DorisChanCrochet
If you are good about checking your gauge before you work on a pattern (or if you are someone who designs your own crochet patterns) then you should end up with quite a few crochet fabric swatches. Some people frog them and use the yarn in the piece that they swatched for. However, other people keep those crochet swatches. If you fall into the latter category, here are ten creative things that you can do with those finished crochet swatches:
- Put them together into a sampler blanket. If all of your crochet swatches are approximately the same size and you have enough of them then you can join them together to make a blanket. Add rounds around each of them to make them the same size, lay them out in a manner that is pleasing to the eye and join them. You can also join squares together to make rugs depending on the type of yarn you typically swatch with.
- Frame and hang them. You can take individual crochet swatches and frame them to create beautiful works of art. This works best if you have swatches in thread and lightweight yarn as opposed to thicker yarn because then you can use traditional picture frames with glass over the swatches. However, you can remove the glass and use just the frame for thicker yarn / bulkier swatches. Hang groups of these together to create a colorful art vignette on your walls.
- Hang them unframed in a row to create decorative trim around the room. Space the swatches evenly and hang them across an entire wall or around the border of the room for a great effect.
- Use as coasters. Swatches are often the perfect size to just leave out in a stack on a coffee table to be used as coasters during a party. Best if the swatches are made from washable yarn of course.
- Make yourself a fabric scrapbook. This is great because it gives you something to remind you of all of the different projects that you have made over the years even though you might have sold or given away many of the original crochet items. You can do a scrapbook of just the swatches alone or you could do a page for each project that includes the swatch, a photo of the finished item and some details on the pattern you used.
- Sew them on to other items as appliques. A single swatch or several small swatches can be sewn on to a pillow, a bag or a dress to add some color and texture to the item. I think this is a great use of extra swatches!
- Donate them as crocheted squares. There are always projects going on that accept crocheted squares as donations for items that eventually get turned into full afghans. You may need to add to or adapt your squares for some projects. For example, Sweet Dream Blankies accepts worsted weight acrylic 12″ squares so you may be able to join a couple of existing squares that you have together to make a viable donation to them. Search around and see where your donation can count.
- Turn them in to pin cushions. I don’t use pin cushions myself but I know that a lot of people like them and even collect them. You can take two swatches of approximately the same size, stuff them with yarn scraps or other stuffing, sew them together (put them back to back and crochet whipstitch the edges as one way), and you’ve got pincushions.
- Sponge paint with them. Dip them in paint and use them to sponge paint canvas, walls and more. This idea via Talking Crochet.
- Use them in a mixed media art project. Get creative and have fun with it! Check out the cool creative swatch art that was posted previously at Crochet by Faye.