Monday, December 12, 2011

Making Plarn/Plastic Yarn

(still working out taking pictures, kind of bad with cameras some days...)

About a year and a half or two years ago, I came across this stuff called plarn online. Basically, it's the use of plastic shopping bags to make yarn to crochet or knit with. I've seen a bit of knitted plarn, and haven't really liked the look of it. Being a novice at knitting, I haven't given it a shot yet. Having crocheted since about the third or fourth grade, I felt much better about playing with plarn in crocheting. Since I first learned about it, I've come a long way in my crocheting with it. This is my attempt at how to make a ball of plarn from bags.

First off, get clean bags. If they're dirty, either wash or throw them away and find some clean ones. Lay the first victim out flat on your work surface.

Next, fold it in half.

And again.

And one last time.

Now take your cutting utensil of choice and remove the bottom of the folded bag. This is the section seamed together. Just cut off as much as needed, no need to waste any, unless you do like me and cut too much off. 

Continue to cut up the bag into about one inch pieces. If they're a bit bigger, it's ok, same for being on the small side. Dispose of the handle at the top.

I used a rotary cutter today since I was sitting at the dining table and had room for the mat and wanted a change up from scissors. But my usual weapon is the scissors. I use a pair of those titanium blade ones the late craft center at WalMart had. The better your blades, the easier time you will have.This is with the scissors. Same process.

Right now I'm making a big batch of varigated colors all with white background. This is what I had cut up for colors so far this morning. The box of white next to it is going into balls of white yarn and came from the un-inked sections of bags cut for varigated.

To put your yarn together, take 2 pieces of bag. Pull them open and place bag A (strip farther to the right) over top of one half of bag B (strip on left).

Pull the right tip of bag A up through the right tip of bag B.

Pull them together firmly to make a small knot. Don't pull too hard or else it will begin to tear the bags. However, the smaller the knot you have the less it will show up in your stitches.

Ball it up, bind with a rubber band and cut up some more!

I don't just use grocery/shopping bags. I go for pretty much any kind of plastic bag that comes through my house that I can repurpose to keep it from going in the trash. These bags here are all from bread, toilet paper in big packs, carrots and the like. They are a bit harder to crochet with, but I like the look of them as well.

When crocheted, they come out looking like this:

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