Posts Tagged With: Plarn

Pop tab Coin Purse

I’m excited about this one.

same pattern, two different designs

same pattern, two different designs

These little guys are coin purses made from pop tabs. I got the urge to try this after watching the following videos on youtube.


Youtube strikes again!

If you watched the above video, you’ll see some differences between them and the coin purses I made. The first time I did this project I followed the pattern to almost a T.

Hey, no place in town sold Espiga Rayon thread. And I didn’t feel like shopping over the internet to find any. That time I used Cotton crochet thread from Aunt Lydia.

When I completed the project I didn’t like how it looked with the sides being made of the pop tabs. I looked nothing like the picture shown in the video. In the end I pulled that project.Cotton crochet thread pop tab coin purse

This time around I skipped the  middle section and crocheted the two side together. I like this look much better to tell the truth.

Once again I used Aunt Lydia crochet thread for the dusty red one. But to try something new, I used Plarn on the second one.

The one  I did with the crochet thread had a more 3D shape to it. I think it looks more like a flower than a coin purse. I think if I were to change how the sides are connected to the pop tabs it might look more like a coin purse.

I did try starting the sides at the top of the pop tabs on another project. It made it look more like the plarn shape.

Plarn pop tab coin pursePersonally, the one made of plarn is my favorite. It lays flat like the one in the video and its more earth friendly that its thread counterpart.

What should I try next?

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Fusion Experiment

Here we go again with another post about recycled plastic. Seriously guys, if you starting getting sick of reading about all the cool things you can turn those shopping bags into let me know.

You have seen my first tries of working with the medium and what I’ve created with some of my own creative juices. What else could I possibly get myself into? What about something other than rugs?

What would happen if you could turn those lightweight plastic bags into a piece of wall art? I think I managed to do that. Take a look at this!

Fused plastic wall art

That my friends, is made of fused plastic bags with Walmart plarn for the letters. The idea for this project came as an assignment in my Digital Humanities class. We were asked to write something without using paper and ink.

I saw people who used coffee beans to spell out the “Our Father” prayer, pipe cleaners to say “hello” in 16 different languages. One person used a pizza box and newspaper clippings. But I fared to be different.

Fused plastic is a newer form of recycling. I only recently came across it and had been dying to try it out for myself. Threadbanger on Youtube had a video about making a computer bag out of fused plastic and I ran with the idea from there.

All I did was fuse 2 black garbage bags together with an iron on medium heat. The hard thing was getting the air bubbles out. Once it was fused I picked the words to stitch onto it.

During this time I had been listening to “Fly on the Wall” by Thousand Foot Crutch. Well, I really had been listening to the Nightcore version but the words are the same. Any who. I took part of the first verse as my words.

The other night I had a dream. There was a world full of Kings and Queens. But it was cold.

Originally I tried to use an embroidery needle to drive the plarn through the fused plastic. That didn’t work. Instead I needed to prime the fused plastic with a thumb tack. I poked the holes I needed to make the letters and then stitched them in.

The longest part of this project was the lettering. I thought I could crank it out in an hour or three before class. That didn’t happen. Thankfully, class had been cancelled for some odd reason and I got another week to complete it.

Now it’s your turn. What can you come up with?

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Playing with Plastic

I wouldn’t call myself a “green freak” but I do like thinking of ways to reuse things so that they don’t end up in the dump. Seeing how I’m in college I can’t do as much as if I had my own house. If that was the case I would have one word right on the tip of my tongue: Compost. but like I said, College in a dorm. I don’t think my floor mates would appreciate the smell.

But this isn’t about what I will do, its about what I’ve been doing. And I have been playing with plastic; plastic bags to be more specific.

I have a friend who one year for a gift gave me a crochet bag she made entirely out of something called Plarn. Plarn is the term for yarn that is made from plastic bags. you can make this stuff from any sort of bag you get at a store. Mine are mostly from Walmart and the C3 store on campus. Before I left for college my family and I would use the unholy bags as trash can liners for in the bathroom, offices and bed rooms. In the form I only have one trash can and it gets emptied onces every two weeks or so. The bags have been piling up and making plarn out of the bags cuts down on the clutter.

There are two ways that I make plarn. I either do the loop method which is the easiest and fastest to make.

From the video you can see that the strand is actually doubled giving it a little extra strength.  This way of making the stuff is good for weaker plastics such as those Walmart bags. that stuff is ridiculously thin and snap under the slightest tug.

The second method is the continuous strand method. It may take longer to do and has a higher rate of possible fixable mistake, but it gives you more plarn to work with. This method works better for a stronger plastic such as industrial trash bags.

It was with this second method that I’ve been playing the most with.  I cut seven (and a smidge) 50-60 gallon trash bags into plarn and with that I made my first rug. Not going to lie, I’me kinda proud of this. The idea didn’t really come from anywhere specific but the stitch that I used was the weave. The Crochet Crowd has a video on how to make the basic stitch. I tinkered with it from there.

Can you see the Mistake?

Can you see the Mistake?

In the video he uses two strand of normal yarn and a 6.5 mm crochet hook. I also used two strand of my plarn and for once I had the same size hook as the one in the video. My rug measure 18.5 X 30 inches. It probably took me two days to get it crocheted , granted I did mess up and have to pull a good five inches or so and start over.



The start of the weave

The start of the weave

Once it was to the size that I wanted I started weaving in strips left over from a botched Halloween costume. To tell the truth the fabric was a table cloth that I  bought at the Bemidji Goodwill for $3.00 about. The fabric was cut in a round so I had a continuous strip to work with. after weaving it through I left approximately 6 inches at the ends. I haven’t tied the ends yet but once that’s done I’ll clip the fabric strips. Some of the strips I have tied down but they make the back-and-forth pattern look weird. To fix this I’m thinking that I’ll warp the strip around the plarn outer post and then tie the knot.

I liked working on this project and it made heads turn when I was working on it at work. The rug itself has an almost soft and squishy texture to it. The best part about this project is that this rug will last longer than the bags would have on their own.

However working with the Plarn was a killer on my hands. Plastic cuts aren’t as bad as paper cuts granted but weaving the fabric through ate away at my cuticles. I’ll be having hangnails for a week at least. Another thing that was a little frustrating was that my fabric strips kept fraying. I had snibbles clinging to everything; my shirt, my pants my socks, the futon, my bedding, even my computer (figure that).

When I do try this project again I’m going to try just one strand of Plarn. Using two made the rug very stiff and thick. using just one should let it fit under doors better. Another thing I want to try is using ribbon or actual yarn to weave through the posts. at least that stuff won’t  leave snibbles behind… I hope.

Pretty socks on Plarn Rug

Pretty socks on Plarn Rug

In Case You Missed the Links

Weave stitch tutorial:

The crochet Crowd YouTube Channel:

Looped plarn method video:

Continuous strand method video:

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