First of all, there are a few ways to make "plarn" but I'm going to show you the method I used to make this place mat. It's fairly quick to make and quite honestly becomes a bit of an addiction. Heavy plastic bags are great for fusing projects like I've taught you here, but the light weight bags (mine are from the grocery store and the vegetable store) used for food, and even light weight garbage bags (the orange stripe in my place mat) will do the trick as well, and are in fact the best, since you can get quite a bit of"plarn" out of one bag.
Needless to say grocery shopping will take on a whole new meaning if you decide to try out this great craft.Yes, you do need to know how to crochet, which I highly recommend learning in any case, but other than that, it's really simple.
You'll need lots of light weight grocery bags, plain white, colored, and with printing on them. If you look closely at the photo above, you'll see some red flecks within the white, this is a result of using bags with red printing on them!I didn't keep track of how many bags I used for the place mat, but in addition to one large orange garbage bag, and one large blue bag from a home store, I used roughly 20-30 bags.
Follow the steps below and you'll have some "plarn" for your first project in no time:
Step 1: Smooth out the bag and cut on the dotted red lines. These portions are garbage. The bottom of thin bags usually has a gusset (pleat) on each side which should be cut open with scissors.
Step 2: Carefully fold or roll the bag horizontally to create a 1 inch wide roll. Cut the bag as shown at intervals of about 3/4" inch (2.5cm). You can experiment with the width depending on the size of crochet hook you are using, but much thinner than this will result in a weaker fabric. The pieces that you've cut should be closed loops.
Step 1: Now you will make yarn by joining one loop to another like this. Place one loop on top of another.
The loop on the right should be on top of the loop on the left.
Step 2: Pull the top of the loop under and around the loop on the left, and back up through itself.
Step 3. Pull gently until you've formed a knot. Continue to add loops to this piece in the same way. Do a few bags worth for starters, you can always add more loops while in the middle of crocheting. Also, if you want to do planned stripes, you'll have to add loops of a different color at the end of a row.
Crochet Pattern For Place mat:
- "plarn" prepared as above or using another method you may know
- crochet hook size k or larger
- stitch marker (of just a small piece of contrasting yarn or a metal bag tie that you place into beginning of row and remove at end of the row)
This project is crocheted in a spiral formation. When you are crocheting the rows, you will need to keep track of when you have finished each row, so it is advisable to use a stitch marker.
- Round 1: ch2, 6sc in 2nd chain from hook (ch=chain sc=single crochet)
- Round 2: Crochet 2sc in each sc = 12 sc
- Round 3: Crochet sc in next sc, crochet 2sc in next sc, repeat around= 18sc
- Round 4: *sc in next 2 sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from *= 24 sc
- Round 5: *sc in next 3 sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 30 sc
- Round 6: *sc in next 4 sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 36 sc
- Round 7: *sc in next 5 sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 42 sc
- Round 8: *sc in next 6 sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 48 sc
- Round 9: *sc in next 7 sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 54 sc
- Round 10: *sc in next 8sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 60 sc
- Round 11: *sc in next 9sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 66 sc
- Round 12: *sc in next 10sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 72 sc
- Round 13: *sc in next 11sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 78sc
- Round 14: *sc in next 12sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 84sc
- Round 15: *sc in next 13sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 90sc
- Round 16: *sc in next 14sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 96sc
- Round 17: *sc in next 15sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 102sc
- Round 18: *sc in next 16sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 108sc
- Round 19: *sc in next 17sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 114sc
- Round 20: *sc in next 18sc, 2sc in next sc, repeat from * = 120sc
- Continue in this fashion if you desire to make something larger.