Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Crochet recycled materials...

crochet recycled

I'm amazed that around the world resourceful women (and men) have found various ways of using what others call trash, for crocheting items that will become useful and saleable.
Here are some examples:
1. Plastic bags - Some have made a profit or found it rewarding to crochet using yarn made from plastic bags. (Crocheters named this material as plarn.) Washing, drying and cutting the discarded plastic bags to be used as yarn is a tedious process, but the material is free and its everywhere. A local group here in the Philippines, with the help of U.S. Peace Corps volunteers were able to have a sustainable income crocheting bags and other accessories from discarded plastic bags.

2. Another group of women here in the Philippines with the help of Ann Wizer, crochet with recycled plastic bags.

3. A crochet designer in the Philippines, Moira, started designing and publishing patterns without investing in yarn. She used plarn for most of her initial works and her resourcefulness and creativity paid off with lots of viewership online, earning her income from publishing.

4. Crocheting with Pop-tabs from aluminum cans? I've seen some samples of this, on T.V... I have seen finished items in the mall, and its a bit expensive.

5. There's this Italian artist who knits and crochets yarn made from newspaper! Though it is hard to imagine wearing the items made from newspaper, it can be preserved as a work of art. Maybe we should experiment on this sometime, as we can easily get some old newspapers. I think making them into balls of "yarn" in itself can become a hobby ;)
Here are some of Ivano Vitali's recycled yarn:

6. T-shirt or fabric yarn is a more popular recycled material for knitting and crocheting, since it is easier on the hands and the resulting items are very practical to use. There are some tutorials in making t-shirt, sweater or fabric into yarns and various projects to make or to get inspiration from.
I've started experimenting on this, with an old shirt, an old dress, and a fabric scarf that I don't use. Cutting the material into yarn is harder than crocheting it...
This is a 26-inch square scarf, I don't know what the fabric is made of. It frays a lot and will be a bit similar to fur yarn.

recycled scarf

This other recycled yarn I'm getting from an old skirt is more crochet-friendly. Its easy to crochet and best of all it doesn't fray :)
recycled fabric

More about recycled projects soon...


  1. I actually started crocheting with plarn because it was free and I didn't know if I would eventually get bored and have wasted my money on yarn. Little did I know I would be hooked for a long time! Great post!

  2. That's a great post, Mimi. I used to save old jeans that got rips in them/were too small. But when we started moving a lot, they got thrown away. I was going to make a rug with them one day. I have crocheted with plarn before, but it is kind of hard for me to work with. :)


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