The best DIY scrunchie. Knitting, sewing or crochet?

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Have you ever wondered what is the best way to make a scrunchie? In the last few weeks I have created tutorials for knitting, crochet and sewing to create DIY scrunchies. In this post I will review each method. Which technique is best?

A decorative picture showing a collection f scrunchie. Some are knitted, some crocheted and some sewn from fabric

The best way to make a scrunchie.

While working this project I tried to evaluate each method to see if I could recommend a ‘best’ technique for creating a DIY scrunchie. But of course, what any one crafter might be looking for in a project could be totally different from another crafter. So really, the only overall conclusion can be that there is no best way, except the one that brings you most joy.

But that said, its still possible to look at a few comparisons. These are:

How long each scrunchie takes to make.

How easy or challenging it is to make.

How mindful, meditative and relaxing they are to make.

How sustainable they are to make.

How much equipment you need to have for each one.

The popularity of the finished project.

How long does it take to make a scrunchie?

Its easy to see that knitting is the slowest way to make a scrunchie. Each knitted one took me a couple of hours. Crochet is quicker than knitting for some kinds of projects, and this one is a good example of that. In the same weight yarn, each crochet scrunchie took about one third of the time as the knitted ones. Typically, I would crochet a scrunchie in one hour, but it would take me three to knit one.

Sewing was the quickest way of all. I’m in the middle of reorganizing my craft room, and honestly, the most time consuming step was searching for my sewing machine pedal in the middle of the chaos up there. Once I found that, it was all very rapid. I also noted that for sewing, it was the set up that took time. Once I had my machine threaded, my iron ready and so forth, the actual scrunchie zipped through the machine lickety-split. It only took a tiny bit longer to make 5 than to create one.

Therefore, if someone was planing a market stall event, or favours for a party where they needed lots of little things, my recommendation would be to sew them. It would be easy and not overly time consuming to sew 20 scrunchies in one afternoon.

How easy are the scrunchie to make?

I really don’t think that there is any difference here between the three techniques. I sewed one I wasn’t happy with, but I’m not a confident or experienced at sewing. Whereas I have far more experience with both knitting and crochet. In my opinion, all three methods count as easy enough for a beginner to try.

How mindful is each one to make?

Many of us look for relaxation in our crafts. We don’t approach it as a race, or an attempt to make 20 scrunchies in one afternoon. Instead, we want a medatitive, mindful activity to help us let go of the stress and reconnect with ourselves.

Of the three, I personally found the knitted scrunchie most relaxing to make. Precisely because they were slowest, and forced me to sit and simply knit. There was no stitch variety to the pattern, which I sometimes find a bit boring. I usually look for a pattern with some lace, cables or colour work. These little scrunchie were a quick enough project that I was able to enjoy and relax into doing just one stitch, and not find it frustrating.

I found the sewing ones the least relaxing, but highly rewarding in a different way, seeing them come together quickly.

The crochet ones had a charm of their own, and the balance between speed and variety of stitches means that, personally, I enjoyed making the crochet samples most.

How Sustainable is each scrunchie to make?

The whole project was designed to use up scraps and leftovers, whether that’s bits of yarn at the end of knitting a cardigan, or little bits of fabric from a sewing or quilting project. Anything that turns waist or leftovers into usable items helps us shop less and buy less unsustainable junk. So all three projects have some benefits. I’m not too sure about the elastic bands or strips of elastic used. These are likely petroleum based fibres in these. But the rest of the materials I used were natural fibres. Even someone following the pattern using up a bit of acrylic. I hate everything about acrylic, but its still so much better to use it up, than to leave it languishing in the corner and buy new.

Do I need special equipment for the scrunchies?

For a beginner knitter or crocheter, all you need is a hook or needles, and a small amount of yarn. To sew a scrunchie the way I demonstrated you need a sewing machine and iron. So it might not be as easy to use the tutorial totally on a whim never having prepared to learn to sew.

That said, anyone could hand sew one of the scrunchie. I didn’t try hand sewing a sample, for disability reasons.

How popular are the scrunchies?

This question might not seem important to many readers. But for those of us who have a business element to our crafting, because we sell patterns, finished makes, or just write about it, it can in fact be a very important question.

When creating the three blog posts I started by asking for testers. I was inundated by volunteer testers for the crochet pattern. I got 2 testers for the knitting pattern, and 1 for the sewing pattern.

Once the patterns were published, it was all change. The knitting pattern has consistently brought 5 times as many people to my blog as the crochet pattern. And the poor little sewing tutorial that took me a week to write – its been viewed seven times. In all fairness, I’m not known for producing sewing content, and all my followers on Instagram, Facebook etc, are knitters or crocheters. Do pop over to the sewing tutorial and give it a little love, if you feel so inclined.

Speaking of Instagram, the phenomenon of the knitting scrunchie popularity was doubled. Reels and posts about the knitting scrunchie were getting 10 times the views as the crochet version. It certainly shocked me. The same thing when I pinned to Pinterest. 10 times the views on the knitting pattern than the crochet or sewing one.

In other words, as I hope to gain views on my blog and social media to boost my business, I can clearly see that the knitting scrunchie pattern is out there working hard on my behalf. It may be a free pattern, but its doing its job of getting eyes on my blog, Pinterest account, revelry account and social media. The crochet pattern isn’t working nearly as hard for me. And as for the sewing tutorial, aw, bless its little cotton socks. I still had a lot of fun writing it.

But really, is knitting so much more popular?

I actually thought the crochet scrunchies were prettier, as they had that interesting lace stitch. But there was something others might have been quicker to see than me. It was that the knitted ones were more striking from a distance.

I had three young girls drop by since I made the basket full of scrunchie, and offered each one a couple. I still have plenty of sewed scrunchie, and crocheted ones. But no knitted ones at all. They have all been chosen and taken away by little girls. So I might have thought it was a rather plain design, but clearly it has a strong appeal.

As a person wanting to create designs, this greater popularity of a simple knitting pattern can’t be something I ignore. But it might be a once off. I will see more when I do my next knit versus crochet versus sewing set of patterns. They will probably be dog bandanas. Or maybe hairbands or hot water bottle covers. At some point I plan to try all of those for my knit-sew-crochet comparisons.

In conclusion, the best way to DIY a scrunchie…

is the way that most brings joy to your heart!

If you are making items for a market stall, sewing may have some small advantage by being quickest.

If you are looking to get promoted on social media, knitting may get more views, more quickly.

If you want a good balance between mindful make and quick satisfying pretty result, crochet is brilliant.

They are all amazing, and I wouldn’t want to be without any of my crafts. How about you? Let me know your favourite in the comments.

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