Monday, April 27, 2009

Knitting Plastic Grocery Bags

Our science today took a decidedly arts and crafty sort of turn. It started out simply enough, with our watching the new Sesame Street: Being Green DVD (Redbox has it for $1.00). The show summed up our last few projects nicely: planting trees, recycling paper, saving energy. But, it also made mention of something we had not tried yet - knitting plastic grocery bags (on the show, they actually use a latch hook method, but we didn't have a canvas bag handy, so we figured knitting was in keeping with the concept).

Since there were a rather large number of old grocery bags lurking under the kitchen sink...
...we decided to proceed with the project. It's really pretty simple. First, flatten the bag out.

Next, fold the bag in half lengthwise, twice, and cut off the handles, and the bottom seem.

Then, cut the bag into about one inch strips (they don't have to be perfectly even, just somewhat similar).

When unfolded, the strips are actually loops, which can be intertwined...

...and knotted together.

Finally, roll the plastic strips into a ball, and crochet or knit them into anything you like.

We used a round knitting loom (the adult hat size), to make this purse. Loom knitting is simple enough for younger children, and there are a lot of patterns free online. We just kind of bumbled our way through this one, improvising from the hat pattern that came with the loom. The children did help, although I ended up doing most of the knitting. Even so, it provided a good lesson in recycling, and crafting at the same time. And now, I have a lot more room under my sink.

It's great to be a homeschooler!

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