Make Fleece Yarn from Fabric

by Ivory Soap

Fleece yarn is great for fluffy, chunky knitting and crochet projects. The following technique turns any big squares of cloth into fabric yarn balls, but this yarn tutorial is specifically geared for fleece.

I don’t know why I didn’t do this sooner.  I have GIANT piles of leftover fleece.

Making Fleece Yarn

Find the Stretch

Pull your fleece pieces.  Figure out which direction of your fleece is the stretchy direction, then fold along the dotted line as shown below for really stretchy yarn.  Fold the opposite way for really sturdy fleece yarn.:

Grab the Shears

Using your favorite rotary blade(or scissors for a rustic look), cut your material starting from the fold in 1/2 inch ribbons.  Stop a 1/2 inch from the edge. (If you’re considering an arm knitting project, you will want to increase your yarn width.  Increase the distance between the strips and stop point from the edge by the same amount.)

Then, open it up and clip every other edge as in the diagram below.  You should end up with one long fabric strip. If you clip in the wrong spot, you get multiple strips.  Don’t worry if you make that mistake; just use the joining instructions found later on in this tutorial.

Trim the Turns

Next, trim the corners off of each turn, so you don’t have big, wacky chunks in your fleece yarn.  you may want to practice with a smaller scrap to find the right trim distance for your particular fabric.  Fleece is bad to overstretch in thin spots.:

Then, roll it up into a ball.

Joining to Make it Longer

If you have multiple pieces of fleece to join, put a TINY slit in end of yarn piece…much smaller than shown below. If you make the slit too large, the yarn gets too skinny when you pull it taut.

Next, thread strip 2 through the slit in strip 1 and pull its (2’s) tail through its own slit. (Like when your connecting elastic bands together.) Check out this post for a good picture of it.

Finally, get our your needles and knit or crochet with your own chunky fleece yarn!

Disclaimer: This post may contain a link to an affiliate.
Amanda May 21, 2010 at 8:57 pm

WOW!!! I have so many remnants of fleece just sitting around. I would have never thought of this! thank you so very much for sharing!! Now, to start gathering them up : )

portia May 22, 2010 at 7:36 am

This is the same technique I use to cut fabric for weaving rag rugs. You can also knit/crochet regular fabric in the same manner shown.

carol May 22, 2010 at 7:58 am

This is the way I recycled all those old cotton t-shirts I didn’t wear any more. They are now a crocheted round rug in my laundry room.

Tanya Walton May 22, 2010 at 9:38 am

I already knew how to do this…I think it’s a great thing to know how to do though so sharing it was a very good idea!

Kalinda May 27, 2010 at 1:23 pm

Aha!! Now I know what to do with all of our old clothes that aren’t donation worthy! Thank you so much!!

Judy July 7, 2010 at 6:58 pm

Thanks so much for the idea. I remember my grandmother using an assortment of old rags and clothing to make rugs and we always liked them.

MamaShea July 30, 2011 at 2:16 am

Just a note, you can also crochet with plastic shopping bags cut into strips, usually 1/2″ to 1″ works best, or even old cassette tapes. It’s a great way to recycle all those old, outdated or otherwise disposable items!

Vicky Martinez Rios May 5, 2014 at 1:47 am

Never thought of using fleece, great idea!!!

Irene December 18, 2014 at 12:51 pm

Great easy tutorial

Debra Robinson August 22, 2015 at 5:50 am

Love this, I never thought of it!

Kristen September 13, 2015 at 4:58 am

If you have an overlocker/serger, you can sew your fabric into a tube, with the stretch running parallel with the open edges. Remove the needles from your machine and cut a continuous strip round and round the fabric tube. Or round and round the body of the T shirt. If you have a yarn ball winder you can zoom along, winding neat balls of your stretchy yarn as you go.
Fast and FUN!

KAY February 8, 2017 at 12:01 pm

I am cutting fleece into 5″ widths to make arm knit blanket. I left 5″ at the top unfolded edge but when I got the yarn strip the turns even trimming some off are still sticking out ugly . What should I do? Cut more at turns? Make the 5″ at the top smaller? OR WHAT? Please help I am trying to make a retirement blanket for my husband.

Ivory Soap February 9, 2017 at 7:47 am

Can you shoot me a picture? ivorysoap at gmail dot com

Cinnamon Vogue February 11, 2017 at 7:25 am

Oh my goodness. Now I remember. My grandma used to do this. As kids we use to help her and have so much fun. Great instructions.

Daisy February 14, 2017 at 12:30 pm

CV–Do you remember what she did with it once it was turned into yarn?

Umum March 11, 2017 at 3:10 pm

Using 1/2″ strips of fleece what size crochet hook do you suggest?
Thank you

Ivory Soap May 10, 2017 at 7:50 pm

Something chunky, like S??

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