"I put these outdoors where I see birds searching for nest-making materials. The birds love these small snippets and when you get a bird with good decorating skills, the nest is really a winner!" (PW)
"Tossing used to be my answer too until I realized that I was often buying a full skein of a color for a particular project when in fact I only needed a tiny bit of it. (And I started trying to be more frugal, times being what they are…), so I began tossing ONLY stray pieces of fiber that were at least 6-8” long into a zip-lock bag. I’m a pretty disorganized stitcher, so I didn’t sort the contents out at all—just stuck everything in and zipped it up. I have found that when I’m working on a project and need a small amount of a color, rather than looking through my sizeable stash of fibers, the first thing I do is pull out the messy remainder bag, and eyeball the contents. Most of the time, I actually can find a perfectly good color in the remainder bag to use for the small area. This doesn’t really reduce my fiber stash but I do feel smug using up, for example, a stray 10” strand of purple metallic thread instead of depleting my full-size skein stash or buying a new fiber." (Susan)
"Many stitchers I know collect them in an “ort” jar and when the jar is full, put them outside in an area where the birds will find them. They are great for lining nests! I’m sure other animals use them too! It’s a way of giving back”!" (KB)
"I put my threads in an empty jar that I've cleaned. It takes about six months to fill a jar and I think they look so pretty and colorful."
"I let my kids play with random leftover threads. They think they're beautiful treasures and sort them by color or length and put them in little treasure boxes and eventually lose them. :)" (MB)
"I put my little snips on tree branches for the birds to use in building their nests. I enjoy watching them discover their "treasures!"" (DT)
I keep leftover full strands for future pieces that might need more yarn - and I have saved myself trips to the yarn store several times. Sometimes I use them to change the pattern of a kit, like coloring outside the lines.
The pieces cut off the end of the strands? I use them - along with the hair my German Shepherd sheds - to mulch around my oak trees.
There is something poetic about my blend of shepherds and sheep wool .... mingling in the pasture....