Mindful Knitting and Crochet Project Selection for Spring

By: Zoe Lewis

Spring cleaning time is here! Going through all my clothes is a staple organizational activity for me this time of year. As I get rid of old clothes, it can be tempting to fill the holes with new items.  Knitting or crocheting your own garments can be a fun and enjoyable way to get into slow fashion.  However, it is important to be mindful in many areas of the process to maximize sustainability efforts.  Is it really slow fashion if you are filling your closet with clothes you will never wear? Here is my holistic process to eco-conscious clothing fabrication from selection to stitching! 

As explored in my previous blog, the fiber and yarn you choose is the first step.  Luckily, sustainable fiber options tend to be perfect for spring and summer! Cotton or bamboo are both great options that are breathable and washable – perfect for any of the project recommendations at the end of this post.  Of course, it’s always best to try and use what you have first; whether it’s shopping your stash or unraveling a completed project you never use.

Now what you clicked for – the process.  Approaching project selection when it comes to garments is really just like shopping for a new piece of clothing.  Start with your typical closet spring cleanout.  I take out anything I didn’t wear much last year, things I don’t like anymore, things that don’t fit (yes, you do have to try it on), and anything that needs repairing. It’s very important to see what you have that is actually going to be worn. Anything else can be donated, upcycled, or recycled. Now that you can see what you do have, it’s much easier to identify what you don’t.  I recommend making a list of pieces that you need, and another list of pieces you would like to have.  

Next is the exciting part – project selection!  Figure out which pieces from your list you can realistically knit/crochet. Take into consideration your skill level, personal style, and trends.  Yes, you could knit up some rainbow flare pants (and all the power to you if that’s your thing!) but the key here is choosing something that you will get lots of wear out of.  I also recommend focussing on timeless pieces instead of recreating fads or trends. Trends come in and out of style so quickly, it is highly unlikely the piece you made this year will be in next year’s donate pile. Here is a list of very wearable project ideas (with free patterns) to choose from depending on your taste and needs! 


I love incorporating vests into my outfits! They are such a fun way to show off a little person style while adding a splash of color and texture to the look.  To avoid making a one-and-done trendy piece, I would recommend making a neutral vest and customizing it with patches, surface crochet, or duplicate stitch knitting.  These are fairly easy to remove so you can carry the vest with you through years of fashion! Here is a crochet Vest Top or you can try this knitted Boston Vest


There is something incredibly satisfying about wearing a shirt you created yourself.  I will admit, knitting lends itself much more to fabricating t-shirts but you can totally make it work with crochet as well!  This two Duet knitted tee looks super cute and I love that it makes room for a pop of colour.  You could also work the whole thing with one colour if you choose making it a versatile option! For crochet, I think overlay tops like the Outside the Box-Y T-Shirt work the best. As crochet eats up quite a bit of yarn, the airiness helps with using less yardage.  These are also great for spring layering! 


Shawls are such a classic crafting project and a spring staple!  I recently finished crocheting this Wild Wheat Shawl and it turned out great! I made it in a pastel rainbow silk/cotton blend (yes I do like colours…) which is the perfect springy palette for me to layer over a neutral outfit. This knitted Playground Shawl looks like it has the perfect amount of airiness for spring with opportunity to incorporate colourwork if you so choose!

I hope that these project ideas have inspired you to get stitching for spring!  

Zoe Lewis

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