There are a lot of things I hold on to just in case they might be useful for some crafty purpose later, and one thing I cannot possibly get rid of is old jeans.
Another way to use old jeans, or any other fabric for that matter, is to cut it into strips to make yarn.
As if I need more yarn.
How to Make Yarn Out of Old Jeans
First, you need to cut the legs off the jeans at the crotch, so you have the whole leg but no pocket or anything. You can also cut off the bottom hem at this point or just cut it off at the end later.
Get your strongest, sturdiest, sharpest scissors, and cut into the top of the jeans at an angle to start making the jeans yarn. The yarn of course is as thick as you cut your strips, so try to be consistent. I’m really bad at this.
As you go around and around, you’re basically cutting a continuous spiral of yarn out of the jeans leg. Cut right through the seams, which is the hardest part.
Even with great scissors (Fiskars Amplify Razoredge) it was hard to get through those seams. And I gave myself a blister before I’d even cut one leg all the way down.
It’s no big deal if you accidentally cut off the edge and end up with more than one ball of yarn from each pant leg. Just like with regular yarn, you can join in new balls and weave in the ends (more or less) to keep the project together.
Using Yarn Made Out of Jeans
Because my yarn is really thick, I knit a swatch using size 15 US needles, and I probably could have gone even bigger. This yarn is kind of hard to work with, and the pants I cut up didn’t have any stretch, so I had to consciously make my stitches big enough to be comfortable to knit through.
It sheds, too. I have seen people suggest washing the yarn before working with it, but untangling it before knitting seems like an awful lot of trouble.
You could, of course, also crochet with yarn made out of jeans.
I was thinking about making a hot pad with mine but I may just make a long strip and then another and another until I have a rug. Or a blanket.
Have you ever made yarn out of old jeans? What did you do with it? Or what would you make with it if you made some? I’d love to hear your thoughts.
This post is part of the Earth Month Upcycle Challenge. Check out some more posts using fabric in a new way:
10 Awesome Upcycle Ideas for Old Clothes from Crafty Mama in ME
How to Make a Great Recycled Fabric Bag from Witty Hoots
Hand Knit a Rag Rug from Nemcsok Farms
A Tisket, A Tasket Woven Cloth Basket from Mosswood Connections