Upcycling – From Weary to Woolly


Aside from my face being in May’s issue of Knit Today (letter’s page glory), there was also a great article on upcycling.


For those of you who don’t know, upcycling is (in a nutshell) turning toot into treasure. Turning something you’d happily throw out into something you’d actually use. Or, in this case, turning a top destined for the charity bin into yarn!


Unfortunately for me, the upcycling article described how to crochet, rather than knit. I have tried crochet in the past (one small flower), but I’m not that keen to go down this route. I thought I’d give the as-if-by-magic yarn creation a go, and then try to find a knitting pattern for it.

First step – find a suitable garment. This grey blouse thing was already in a bag ready to be dropped at the local charity shop. I bought it on the internet a few summer’s ago and never really liked it. At the time, having two children at home under three-years old put me off the (epic) journey to take it back. So it stayed. And I wore it. And I hated it. Time to get the scissors out. Ho, ho, ho.


Great, step two completed. The next step involved turning the garment, so that I could cut the material from the first seamed edge to the top seamed edge, but leaving an inch gap at the top (so not actually cutting through). Voila:


The next bit was the tricky bit. With my dad’s voice ringing in my ears (“Measure twice, cut once”), I read and re-read the instructions. I lay the uncut seam part over my arm and cut on the diagonal from the bottom of the first strip to the bottom of the next strip (the diagram shows what to do far better than I can explain):


After much (seemingly random) cutting, I was (to my shock!) left with a continuous strip of material. I HAD MY YARN!


I’m tempted to use this as a test piece and see how I get on knitting something with it. When I get a technique with it I might move on to something bigger and better.

I’ve spotted several t-shirts in my husband’s draw that I’m sure he sported at least ten years ago. Ripe for upcycling [insert evil cackle].




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