my latest obsession…plarn!

I haven’t been so good about keeping up with my photo blog lately.  It’s not because I don’t love it–’cause I do 🙂 Not because I’m not out there taking pictures–’cause I am. Tons, actually (so be warned…once I get rolling again with the photo blog thing…) It’s more because I’ve been slightly sidetracked by other things lately.  Like spring break. And Easter. And making baskets out of plarn.  Yup, plarn.

In case you’re wondering, “plarn” is “plastic yarn” that is made from plastic shopping bags.  You know, the kind that you have stuffed away in the better part of a closet, just in case you need a “bag” for something. We all have tons of them, even if we’re trying to be “earth-friendly” and tote around our own reusable ones.  My latest obsession has been saving these, cutting them into strips, tying them together, and using them to crochet baskets and tote bags that are light, strong, durable…and kind of awesome.

I discovered plarn at about the same time that I discovered Pinterest (another obsession…sigh…) and was so taken with the idea of reusing something that I had a seemingly endless supply of to make something useful that I taught myself to crochet, with tutorials and patterns I found on Pinterest, so that I could make these (btw, I’ve also found some amazing recipes, and lots of other things on Pinterest. If you want to see what I’m talking about, click on the big red “Pinterest” button on the sidebar of my blog.  Pinterest is kind of awesome, just like plarn. But that’s a story for another day.) My family thinks I’m more than a bit crazy, but they’ve gotten used to me freaking out when I find a Wal-Mart bag in the trash. They try not to make that mistake too often.  Instead, they tend to leave empty shopping bags in a corner of the dining room, where they know that I’ll find them, fold them, sort them and put them away by type until it’s time to make them into balls of plarn.

My sister sent me a bunch of Wegmans grocery bags in a box of birthday gifts back in February; I used them to make this large tote to keep my yarn stash in.  (The pattern, courtesy of Pinterest. Two obsessions=one project!  Yaaay!! 🙂 )The bags are kind of see-through with dark green print on them,and they crocheted up a nice white-and-green color. I was almost finished, down to the last handle, when alas! I ran out of bags! A frantic phone call to my sister in central New York for more Wegmans bags so I could finish, and she was kind enough to oblige. (If only there were Wegmans stores here in central Florida where I live…sigh…)

This little basket is made out of giant bags from the Lego store; the extra-thick plastic makes for a really strong and sturdy basket.  It also made the boy have a whole new appreciation for my obsession, since in order to get giant Lego bags to make this with, we first had to purchase giant Lego sets from the Lego store at Downtown Disney in Orlando. The bigger the set, the bigger the bag it was put in upon purchase…and the more bright yellow plarn I could make from it. This basket took three Lego bags; the boy had a January birthday…so we had done a little shopping…and he got a gift card to spend, so he did a little shopping, too. Win/win!

I made this basket for the Easter Bunny to fill last weekend, when I realized that I’d forgotten where I packed away the boy’s Easter basket.  In case I couldn’t find it in time for the Bunny’s arrival, we needed to have some sort of basket for the Bunny to fill, so I frantically set to work making this one.  I did find his basket, just in time; so the Bunny had two baskets to fill (seriously, can you ever have enough jelly beans? I don’t think so!)  It’s made from blue and white Wal-Mart bags, and considering that I whipped it together in just a few hours, I think it worked out pretty well.

There are tons of great tutorials and how-to videos on how to make plarn and what you can do with it once you make it; just Google it and you’ll see what I mean.  Or better yet, check out Pinterest–tons of info there (just try not to become obsessed, if you can! ) And stay tuned for more images from my world…they’re coming, I promise!

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made by me!

laura's birthday bag o'plarnlaura’s birthday bag o’plarn

i made this tote bag for my sister as a birthday gift…i don’t know that everyone would appreciate such a gift the way that i knew that she would, because she is a most amazing artist, and has a great appreciation for the kind of time, effort, heart and soul that go into this kind of gift…she is my twin, so making a birthday gift for her is sort of like celebrating my own birthday, and that was the happy thought in my head as i crocheted this for her…i saved up plastic shopping sacks for months to have enough of the right colors to make it work…i think it came out pretty well, but i dunno, it’s not like her art…which is amazing and of a level that i could never reach…when she opened it, she called me to say how much she loves it…and she’s told me since about how she’s showed it to her friends, saying her sister made it for her…so I guess I did ok…and i am pleased.

friends and family

IMG_1797off center…dylan’s pick

so today i decided to try to get an image for a christmas card…i’m still not sure if i’m even sending them this year, but just in case…so far, no luck. we’ll try again, maybe tomorrow; but of the shots i took today, this was the boy’s favorite. i’m not sure why, but i kind of like it, too. maybe because it was an accidental capture (it’s pretty much as shot, way off to a corner…)

random awesome things

crochet snowman :) 11/21/11crochet snowman 🙂 11/21/11

people who usually receive a holiday gift from me have been given fair warning: i am giving homemade gifts this year. cookies, candies, photos and crocheted hats…possibly packaged in a “plarn” basket (if I manage to save enough plastic bags…) This guy was supposed to be a gift, too…but my boy kinda likes him…so i think i’ll be giving it to him ❤ shhhhh….don't tell, ok? 🙂

random awesome things

the rainbow afghanthe rainbow afghan–finally finished!

took me 10 days to finish…my very first one! so it is sort of uneven, and is a little more of a rectangle than it should be…but it’s colorful, and it looks nice on the couch, and surprisingly, the boys really digs it 🙂