Every year billions of plastic store bags and plastic wrappers are thrown in the garbage where they will take years to break down in our landfills. Although we are seeing more of an effort to recycle bags, it’s estimated that only 1% of plastic store bags are recycled.
There are many ways we can help to solve this problem. Many stores now have a recycling box near the front entrance where bags can be disposed of and recycled. Low cost reusable shopping bags can be used to reduce the amount of plastic bags being used or ask clerks not to bag items if you can carry them out of the store without a bag. Bags can be reused around the house as waste paper liners for small garbage cans, packaging to protect breakable items or light weight filling for boxes being shipped and they can also be used to make a rug.
Making a rug from plastic bags is a quick and easy project. If you can knit, you can make a rug. Here’s how I did it:
Using clean bags only, cut off the bottom and the top/handles of each bag and discard.
Cut each bag into strips, about 1 1/4 inches wide, cutting the bags from side to side. Strips cut to narrow will break.
Connect the “rings” of plastic using the No Sew Join #2. (See link below for more instructions.)
I like to join a few of the "rings" together, knit, join a few "rings" together, knit..., but if you’d like, you can join all of the "rings" together and roll them into a ball.
Using large knitting needles, cast on until you have reached the desired width of your rug. 20 stitches will be approximately 12 inches wide using size 10mm knitting needles. Keep stitches loose, if you pull to hard on the plastic, it will break.
Knit, using your favorite stitch until you have reached the desired length for you rug and bind off stitches.
Rugs made from plastic bags are soft and have a lot of cushion. They can be washed with a hose or in the sink and hung up to dry. Avoid placing in very hot or very cold locations.
Enjoy your rug!