I first discovered sari yarn years ago when I was browsing a local yarn shop. I was in awe of the silky softness, and of course the BRIGHT colors! I bought a skein, but was never sure what to make with it, and ended up gifting it away in one of my knitting swaps. Boy am I kicking myself now!
Fast forward to this year. I started listening to the Knit Collage Podcast and was totally inspired by Amy's entire mantra; follow what inspires you, embrace the weirdness, and always be growing. All of the Knit Collage yarns are handmade and hand spun in India by a group of women. Incredible! In one of her early podcasts, she had guest Christina Dean, and they discussed the effects of fast fashion and how much waste it creates. Christina created Redress an amazing fashion company that focuses on reducing textile waste. Needless to say, I was inspired. What could I do to help?
I remembered back to the day I first picked up sari yarn. Using the powers of Google, I researched high and low about the materials, process, and the workers who make this colorful yarn. Sari textiles are a major tradition and a huge fixture in manufacturing in India. Unfortunately, many tons of scraps from the manufacturing floor become waste. What is their way of turning these into usable products? Making colorful ribbons and yarn. I discovered a manufacturing group located in Rajasthan, India that sells gorgeous textiles and home decor. They also sell the sari ribbon! IN BULK! Dangerous for me, I know! I placed an order and within a few days the yarn traveled all the way to my doorstep.
I knew I wanted to design a blanket for my home using these crazy colorful skeins. I found lots of projects on Ravelry using sari yarn, but not a single blanket pattern. There had to be more people out there wanting to make a sari blanket. Grabbing the largest needles I had (US 15), I cast on what became my Pink City Sari Blanket. Each stitch was a complete joy. With every color change in the skein, there were delicate hand stitches joining the sari scraps. These women in India are so talented! Within a few days, my blanket was complete. Oh the wonders of chunky yarn. I can honestly say, I snuggle up with it every day! It has definitely become my favorite piece at home.
I hope I've inspired you to test out this amazing fiber for yourself! Not only are you using recycled materials, you also empower women with each skein they create.
What is your favorite project using sari ribbon? Leave a comment below!