What Do You Do with Ball Bands?

From yarn you’ve already used, I mean. I just stumbled across a rather large pile of ball bands from various projects I have made. In some cases I have leftover yarn as well, but those leftovers live in a separate bin, away from their bands. Not sure I could match them up at this point as I’ve been knitting (and saving scraps) for 15 years. Can I throw the old ball bands away? Even if they might come in handy someday?

Just curious what everyone else does.

Julie in Seattle

I used to save them and usually put them in the page protector along with the pattern that I knit using that yarn, but I recently purged 99% of my stored paper patterns if I could access them in my library on Ravelry, so when I did that, I recycled the ball bands as well. I don’t keep them any longer.

I do use Ravelry to keep track of my projects, so the yarn information is always on the project page and I can refer back to that if I need care instructions, etc.


I rely on Ravelry for all the information I might need from a ball band (except the dye lot, I’m not organized enough to log those into my Ravelry stash), so I don’t save mine either. But I have seen some cute decoupage projects using pretty ball bands! :grinning:


I like to keep a ball band with any leftovers so that I can remember what it is. I just fold it up into a strip that I insert into the middle of the cake. Also, if I am gifting a knitted item, I will include one of the ball bands with it. All the rest I throw away.


I am pretty good at keeping track of everything on Ravelry so if I’ve used up the whole ball of yarn, out goes the ball band. I used to compulsively keep them but realized that I never, ever went back to them for anything. If there is something special on the band like the dyer’s email address, I just enter it in the project notes.


Right now I am knitting something out a yarn that I loathe and openly mock. It’s a charity thing and it’s what they requested so I am sucking it up.

That ball band will be burned under a full moon and never spoken of again.


I have sometimes found the yarn info available online - even on rav(!) - to be incomplete or inconsistent. Lacking % of each fiber in a blend, for example, or
washing instructions. Searching the manufacturer’s website doesn’t always work either, if a particular yarn is no longer being made or a company has closed. So I decided a few years ago to just keep one one ballband from any type of yarn I use
Of course, there is still the problem of remembering where I put all those ballbands…

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I snip a piece of yarn and staple it to one of the ball bands and place it in a box. Been doing this for years, mostly as a reminder of all the projects I’ve made through my 40+ years of knitting. If I have any balls left, I leave those bands with the extra yarn so I know what’s in stash for the future.


If the item is for me, I tuck the band into whatever is left from the ball. If it’s a gift, I wrap a generous 7-10 yards around the band and include it with the gift. This way, there’s no guess work about fiber content. If I’m feeling super-organized, I’ll tie an extra band to the swatch(es) I’ve knit from that yarn.


I’m posting a little late, I see! I have ball bands all over the place, and for some reason my dog loves to chew them up. So I’ve decided to get better with putting my projects in Ravelry, and include a picture of the ball band there.


Very late responding to this. I usually save them until I am finished with whatever project I bought the yarn for. Then I throw them out.


Those bands must smell really interesting to a dog! And if you aren’t going to walk, they’ll just participate in what you’re doing!


Imagine my surprise when I found that I had already bought Skogafjall last March in my Rav library - guess what I’m knitting.

Sorry, wrong thread.


I usually write the name and date of the project I am making with the yarn. I tie the ties that I’ve removed from the hank to the yarn band, along with a longer piece if available. If I have a small partial leftover, I’ll throw it in a baggie with the band.
I have come across unidentified yarns in cakes, Hanks, or partial leftovers over the years. This collection has helped me to identify and solve a few mysteries. Easier to match two strands of yarn than to guess.


Although I think you are being far too generous to him, I believe the intent is play with me! Do not EVER focus on ANYthing but meeeee!
But because of that anything he does steal — bookmarks are another favorite —he immediately shows me w eyes sparkling & tail wagging, & just in case there’s any confusion on my part, he will go into downward dog aka let’s PLAY stance. Resistance is futile.

[My sincere apologies for not having seen this sooner!!]