Recycled Crafts: How to Make Plastic Yarn

November 9, 2012 at 4:30 pm 2 comments

Happy Friday!

This posting is the first of a weekly series featuring recycled crafts. A main part of our mission at Recycled Reads is to reduce waste and reuse any books we can’t sell, so we spend a lot of time thinking up crafts that can give new life to books that would otherwise go to the landfill. Besides books and paper, we also make crafts using VHS tapes, plastic bags, CDs and jewel cases. Our goal is to help Austin become a Zero Waste city by keeping as much out of the landfill as possible.

This first posting will provide you with a tutorial on how to make plastic yarn, or plarn. One of our volunteers, Ana, kindly demonstrated the process for us in pictures.

Supplies:
Plastic grocery bags
Scissors

Step 1:
Take a plastic bag and flatten it out. Fold it in half, then fold in half again.

Step 2:
Next, cut off the handles and the bottom of the bag.

Step 3:
Now that the handles and the bottom are cut off, take the folded up bag and cut into sections that are about 1 ½” in length.

Step 4:
Now that the entire bag is cut up into small sections, take one section and unravel it. You now have a loop of plastic.

Step 5:
Take another section and unravel it, then knot the two loops together using a lark’s head knot. The photo below illustrates how a lark’s head knot should look. Be sure to pull it tight so the two loops become one strand of plarn.

Continue to connect individual loops to form a long length of plarn. This may take several plastic bags worth to assemble. Once you reach your desired length of plarn, you can use it to crochet or knit. Here’s an example of crochet using plarn that Ana made.

We hope you enjoyed this tutorial and got some inspiration as well!
See you next Friday!

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