When I was growing up in Poland we lived in the same region as a number of carpet factories. Twice a year there would be a sale of scrap yarn, and we would take the train out to the factories to buy bags of these leftover pieces. The bags were made up of whatever leftover lengths they had on hand, in all sorts of colors. You had no choice of what you got and were never sure what you would be coming home with.
We then took these small pieces of yarn and by tying the ends together made them into multi-colored balls of yarn. At that time we couldn’t buy anything in the stores, there was no fashion, so we’d knit all sorts of crazy hats and sweaters.