Saturday, July 08, 2006

Adventures in Recycling

Not so long ago my very excited sister shared this web site which provides instructions on pulling apart sweaters for the yarn. I was dubious, however, my sister assured me it was worth the effort as she had dismantled several already. What sold me? The sheer quantity of yarn that was produced! Little did I know what truly awaited me.

Enter the cotton sweater and the woolen sweater purchased from the Salvation Army. Which to tackle first. Hmmmm. Well, my sister has done wool so I'll try the cotton. Did I say this was a good idea? Turns out the sweater was made of STRANDED cotton. Why would this be an issue, let me count the ways...
1) cutting the thread holding the pieces together - which one of the these *x@#** strands is the thread and which is the yarn, the room is starting to spin
2) unraveling - one would think that all four strands of cotton would remain intact if there was no hole in the sweater, right? Wrong! Stopping, winding, restarting because one of the strands is broken.
3) beautiful yarn - curly strands of string everywhere

Here's what it looked like:

O.K. so I persevered for a while then gave up on the remaining portions of the sweater. I just could not take any more. Now the dilemma. This stuff didn't look usable. Four very thin strands of curling cotton which must be held together smoothly to be worked?! No way. I plunked the skeins on my kitchen table where they sat and stared at me for months. Taunting me that all my effort was for naught.

I had a revelation today. All that tangled curly string (ahem, I mean) lovely yarn was PINK. Yes, pink as in Think Pink Project.

Alright, I thought, try it. Courage in one hand and a size H crochet hook in the other, I began a scarf. I bet you can guess what's coming. It worked...

So, lesson learned. Stranded cotton can be disassembled and used for crochet. Will I unravel cotton again? Probably not. However, the wool is a different and MUCH HAPPIER story which I'll save for another time. Happy Recycling!

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