Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Homemade Yarn Swift Cheap and Easy!

Hi Everyone,
So my latest project was to make a yarn swift. I do sell them so I could obviously buy one fairly cheap. But a penny saved is a penny earned. So I just earned a nice little chunk of change to buy more yummy yarn with!!! A long time ago I had come across a site that gave instructions on how to make one and I bookmarked it and figured I'd get back to it when things settled down. Well then my computer crashed and I haven't been able to find the site again. So I went with what I could remember (which wasn't much) just that I needed a computer chair. You know the type with wheels/ casters. Well I had one in the garage that we haven't used in ages so here is what I did... oh first for those of you that don't know what a yarn swift is for. Some yarns mainly the ones that come from LYS (Local Yarn Stores) come in hanks instead of skeins. A hank is how the yarn comes after it is spun it is basically yarn twisted well you can't exactly work off of a hank as you will quickly end up with a big twisted tangled mess of yarn. So what you need to do is turn the hank into a skein or ball. So one way to do this is to have someone hold the hank while you unwind it and turn it into a ball. And the other way easier way is to have a yarn swift and a yarn ball winder ( LOVE MY WINDER) The swift will hold your yarn and spin while you wind or ball it. A yarn ball winder is great because it gives you a center pull ball of yarn. But I have a tutorial coming up on how to use an empty toilet paper roll to make a center pull ball of yarn so stay tuned :)
1- First thing I did just to make life easier for me was unscrew the chair from the base. If your chair doesn't come apart like mine did no big deal just move on to the next step.
2- Remove the casters (set aside you might come across another project that calls for casters!)
3- I used some majic markers that I had laying around to put in the holes that the casters left behind. My markers were to thin so to make them fit more snuggly I wrapped a bandaid at one end. So you can use anything really and modify it to fit snuggly (so the markers don't fly off as you are winding your yarn)
4- Then just place your hank on it and ball it up I used my yarn ball winder but you can wind it in whatever method you choose.
My chair ended up being to big so I only used 3 of the "legs" you'll see in the photos how I improvised. But hey it worked and my husband is super happy he doesn't have to hold the yarn for me anymore!

Well I hope this small tutorial helps someone save some money. Have a great day!


  1. That looks superb! I had tried to make myself a homemade swift and it just didn't do well for me so I ended up buying one. Using the office chair is such a great idea!

  2. Thank you Julie :) (I was wondering if anyone read my posts lol) This works wonderfully. So much so that I won't buy a real swift. I do wish I had a smaller office chair though maybe I'll find one at a thrift store. :) have a good day

  3. Great idea! I wonder what other things there are that spin which could be converted into a yarn swift. Now I'm going to be looking at everything twirly in hardware stores & thrift shops in a different way.