daily work · knitting · yarn

Swatch Collage

I’ve made it a habit to save my swatches. I think it stems from my knitting classes in college – our homework every week was to develop 4-6 knitted swatches,and at the end of the semester we needed to display all our best swatches so that professors could analyze our progress. After my school days were over, I still found reasons to keep my swatches. Sometimes a swatch I’d previously disregarded as a failure will turn out to be the key to inventing a new stitch pattern, making it the starting point for a new project. Other times I’ll knit up a swatch without any idea what it could be used for, keep it, and eventually think of the perfect design months later.

I’ve continued to save my swatches at work, too. I collect them in baskets, and Norah and Donna both toss their finished swatches into them as well. Here’s one of my swatch receptacles:

I started thinking that it would be nice to see a bunch of the swatches all laid out together, so I grabbed a bulletin board and pinned them up together. Here’s my board:

It reminded me of a patchwork quilt, so I started duplicating it for different effects. Here it is, repeated four times:

And then I flipped them to mirror each other:

And of course I can never resist applying a kaleidoscope effect, just to see what happens:

These swatches just keep coming in handy!


6 thoughts on “Swatch Collage

  1. Very nice! I save all of mine, too, although I have no idea why or what I’ll do with them. I just like them very much. I think that one day I’ll have a fabulous brainstorm about what to do with them. 🙂

  2. That kaleidescope effect could be the basis for a whole ‘nother swatch – it’s great! A pillow cover or colorwork cardi, anyone? 🙂

  3. I use my saved swatches to go inside the clear plastic cover of the many large, white ring binders I keep my printed patterns in. i love remembering what the swatches were for, which garment for which person, for example. Generally I”ll have a small note pinned to the swatch saying what needles were used, which stich and row gauge I achieved, etc. Useful and meaningful info.

  4. I’m with Kathleen – I have to label my swatches or even a week later I wouldn’t remember what the yarn or needle size were. How do you keep track without any labeling?

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