How to Make Yarn Out of Plactic Bags, T-shirts, and Sheets

12:28 PM

Check out Let Birdzfly's t-shirt yarn tutorial
Now that I've started to learn to crochet, I'm fascinated by the endless possibilities of crochet things form yarn made by stuff around our house I would either give away or throw away.  You can make plarn (plastic yarn) out of plastic bags (not hard to collect those!), or make yarn from old t-shirts (which looks super cool) and old bed sheets or other old fabric you have around the house you don't want.    I love the ideal of not having to go to the store and buy something, and cleaning out my stuff to get rid of pile and plastic bags i keep forgetting to drop off to recycle.  And who doesn't love the fact that recycling these materials means less stuff in landfills?

Some tutorials I went on the hunt for were easy to find (tshirt yarn and plarn), others were not (turning sheets into yarn).  I thought I might as well put them all in one easy to find place.

Outdoor Plarn Rug by Amanda's Happy Hearth
Plarn is plastic bags turned into yarn.  That's right you can turn all those annoying bags that magically stack up in your home actually into yarn!

how to make plarn using strips (non continuous)

        How to make plarn in a continuous yarn 

 I made plarn out of 23 bags that are white and red and I figure I'll need 140-160 more to make a huge outdoor rug like I want.  I plan to make mine similar to the one above, just a lot bigger.  The rug by Amanda's Happy Hearth pictured above used 40-50 bags.  I used the noncontinuous plarn method, not because I think it's better, just because I didn't know there was another way.  Next I plan to try the continuous method (the second video).  I plan to make bags and purses with plarn after I finish my rug.  check out this tutorial for making a purse with plarn.

T-Shirt Yarn
Crochet Pouf Ottoman Floor Cushion  made with tshirt yarn buy the pattern on Etsy
I'm making a ton of this for a huge rug in our basement.  We bought knit sheets for years and they've all been replaced in our house, luckily I've been getting smart and saving stuff for crafting!  We also have a few old t-shirts the same color (white).  Wonder how big it will get!  I learned how to make a continuous t-shirt yarn (I think this is the best way) by watching the video below.  After watching the above plarn video I think this method would work better than the video below.  They both work, I just think the way in the continuous plarn video is faster.  I also later found a great very detailed tutorial on Amanda's Happy Hearth that not only gave very specific instructions but shows you how to use the top half of the t-shirts too.  Yea!  I was thinking that was just a waste. 

                                                   learn how to  make continuous  t- shirt yarn (4 min)

Fabric Yarn (from sheets, jeans, etc.)
Rug made from jeans get the free pattern at Thrifty Fun
As I mentioned above I have lots of sheets to use!  I had a hard time finding any tutorials for old sheets, but I found one that's super good on Petals to Picots.  It has great pictures and it basically uses the same method of the above continuous methods.  I have a non knit bed sheet set I plan to make into yarn too.  Don't know what I will do wit that yet.

3 Ways to Join Your "Yarn" Together  
Image From Dollar Store Crafts
So how do you join your yarn together?  Well it seems they're are three ways: looping (pictured above), sewing, and knotting.  I choose the sewing method (except for making plarn) since if you read this blog you know I'm comfortable with sewing!  I also thought it would look the best (but since I haven't tried to make anything with it yet I can't speak from experience).  I think the looping method would be fine, but would not try the knotting method myself.  I think it would look messy and be less strong.  I found an article by Dollar Store Crafts explaining all 3 methods and a video showing you how to do them is below.  You can also spin your fabric strips into yarn.  I posted awhile about a tutorial I found about spinning fabric yarn with chopsticks or knitting needles.

How to connect two strips of t-shirt yarn (4 min) ©Oh You Crafty Gal! 2011-2012 All rights reserved. 

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