. . . luv 'n stitches for our tired old world

Posts tagged “recycle

a Sweetie❤KNIT❤Shamrockin’ St. Patrick’s Day!

a Sweetie❤KNIT❤Shamrockin' St. Patrick's Day!

HaPpY St. Patrick’s Day… the most socially acceptable time of year to “tie one on”, which is exactly what I did! I tied one ball of newspaper yarn on and around my fingers until it took the form of a wreath 🙂

It all began with our flight to San Diego. Seeing as knitting needles have not been allowed aboard planes since 9/11, I always wrack my brain for something creative to keep busy with while traveling. Finger knitting became my aircraft craft of choice for this particular flight. And so, with my knitting needles checked in our baggage and a few balls of newspaper/plastic yarn (spun beforehand) stashed in the carry-on, we were off! Boarding without boredom… the only way to fly 🙂

Have you ever tried finger knitting? Finger knitting with paper yarn actually works better than regular needles anyway, since paper can’t stretch. The resulting stiff lengths of paper knitting have selvages that curl inward (same as any yarn in stockinette) and a structural texture that reminds me of grapevine wreaths. And so for my first finger knitted project, I made this “faux grapevine” wreath! Simply tie the ends together and adorn with hand-knit shamrocks and hearts ❤

My wreath (pictured here under dull, grey, winter-weakening skies) was finger-knit, using paper yarn spun from full-colour grocery store flyers. It is adorned with two 3-leaf and two 4-leaf Sweetie❤KNIT❤Shamrocks & one (pink) Sweetie❤KNIT❤Heart & four (purple, pink, light/dark green) Bramble❤tini Hearts.

a Sweetie❤KNIT❤Shamrockin' St. Patrick's Day!

What do you think about this crafty recycling idea? Now more than ever, my nimble knitting fingers are eager to help save the planet… one junk mail flyer at a time 🙂

And has the luck of the Irish traveled with you when flying with your knitting needles and/or crochet hooks? Feel free to leave a comment below and fill me in! All I know for sure is that the last time I tried in-flight knitting was a few years ago en route home from Cancun, Mexico. Someone had said it was once again okay to knit while flying. We asked for confirmation from every single check-in personnel along the way. They all said it was okay, until the very last check-point… where they were seriously going to confiscate my needles—right then and there!!! So without a moment to spare, we ran like the wind all the way back to the starting-point and checked ’em in as baggage, along with what we had planned to carry-on… ughhh!

One of these days, I’ll write a tutorial for how to spin paper/plastic yarn. For today, just wanted to wish everyone a Happy Sweetie❤KNIT❤Shamrockin’ St. Patrick’s Day! ❤ Jackie

Fibre Harvest

Winter, spring, summer, fall… What is your favourite yarn season of all?

Over the winter, I tend to cuddle up in my favourite knitting corner on the couch—surrounded by as much yarn as possible. ❤ By the time spring gets sprung, my needles and lawn chair are raring to get back in the groove of knitting outdoors. ❤ All summer long, my cotton knitting pleasure is to sit and knit outside—preferably every single hot, sunshiny day! ❤ Once fall is upon us, my nimble knitting fingers gravitate toward the gathering of bulky balls of yarn—all the better to keep warm, whilst knitting outside just one more day… in effort to prolong the outdoor knitting season until the fresh, crisp autumn air gives way to winter’s white chill.

Then this year, I decided to try something yarnishly different. You might say that I pulled a few strings to do it 😉 … a few strings toward a bountiful sweater harvest.

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It all began a few years ago, when I received a hand-me-down sweater from a friend-of-a-friend. This simple-yet-colourful pullover was knit of thick, cushy stitches. Truly, it was a hand knit look-alike, although the “made in Hong Kong” garment tag suggested otherwise. Handknit or not, however, wearing that sweater always seemed to turn into a sneeze-fest for me… stuffed-up ‘n sniffly… and that’s no way to be.

Then finally this fall, since unravelling an entire FO (finished object) had always intrigued me, I decided to unravel that sweater. It’s good to “check” another task off my knitterly bucket list! My goal for this project, due to its fibrously fuzzy nature, was to unravel outdoors as much as possible (thereby avoiding as much sneezing and vacuuming as possible). A bagful of colourful fluff, which is saved for fibre-fill, was gleaned from the reclaimed yarn. To my delight, and for the sake of this blog (right, as if plain old yarn was not fun enough), this reclaimed collection of recycled fibrous-fluff quickly took shape as a colourful heart amidst the fresh-fallen snow 🙂

Yes, unravelling this old sweater was a great autumn project! More fun by far, than dipping into the proverbial frog pond for a frogging session with one’s own (erroneous) knitting! Have you unravelled a sweater? Ever taken it upon yourself to take apart an entire FO? In other words, have you ever frogged just for the yarn of it? Feel free to share your proclamation of yarn reclamation in the comments below 🙂

Hmmm… now then, what shall I knit from my lovely stash of reclaimed yarn? ❤

a little SPUN in the SUN on Earth Day ♥

Yesterday was Earth Day. My hope was to mark the day in some earth-friendly sort of way…

As it turned out, Sunday the 22nd of April was our first truly hot ‘n summery day of the 2012 season! Winds were also minimal. So yeah, right back at ya’ there, earth! It felt oh-so-good to take time to be kind to the earth—especially since the earth in that moment was bestowing such kindness upon us. All this seemed like the perfect day to take my newly acquired Turkish drop spindle outside for a test-spin.

Spinning newsprint and plastic into yarn has been at the top of my “craft to do” list for the longest time. Truly, plastic bags work up nicely for knit and/or crochet, yet I kept thinking that a spun plastic bag may make working with the material even better. Knitting with paper yarn would be a new experience, for me. The only thing I knew for sure was that I wanted to give it a try. First, though, I needed to figure out how to spin…

Thanks to YouTube and all the world’s crafty individuals who take the time to post tutorials, I was able to enlighten myself about spinning! Amidst the abundance of useful videos, tutorials from Knit Picks and others quickly convinced me that the Turkish drop spindle may just be the best spin tool to get started with. Vickie Howell’s “Making Newspaper Yarn” tutorial is also a great demonstration of how simple it is to spin paper into yarn.

And now that my stash-building efforts have expanded to include old newspapers and plastic bags, it appears that SABLE is alive and well in my heart. Clearly, the time for spinning has come!

How did you mark Earth Day 2012? For me (with one old newspaper, a handful of plastic grocery bags, a pair of scissors and my Turkish drop spindle), it was a great day for a little spun in the sun!


Example of spun plastic “produce” bags from the grocery store.

lace-weight plarn

Example of spun plastic grocery shopping bags cut into approximately 1.5″ strips for lace-weight plarn. The toilet paper roll makes a great fine fibre tamer 🙂

worsted-weight plarn

Example of spun plastic grocery shopping bags cut into thirds for worsted-weight plarn. The red/black “Safeway” logo gives this plarn a nice speckled touch of colour.

worsted-weight newsprint yarn

Example of spun newsprint cut into approximately 1.5″ strips for worsted-weight newsprint yarn.

newsprint yarn

Newsprint yarn rolled into a centre-pull ball.