Your Guide to Sustainable Knitting and Crochet Projects
Sustainability can be practiced in all areas of your life — including your crafting. What’s more, your crafts can help you to cut the amount of plastics and non-recyclable packaging materials that you would normally use. Reducing your carbon footprint and being sustainable has never been this much fun!
Why think about sustainability in your knitting and crochet?
As we learn more about our impact on the environment because of our actions, it becomes clear that only recycling the odd cardboard box, for example, is not enough to make a definite change in the world. And plastic that we use are usually quite obvious.
But have you ever wondered what plastics hide in your crafting supplies? One of the main culprits when it comes to “hidden” plastics, are acrylic yarns.
Consider the yarn that you want to use
Sustainability in your crafting doesn’t begin and end with what you make, but also what you make it with. Rather than reaching for the cheapest yarn you can find, you can buy a local brand or even some of the yarn that has been made from recycled pre-loved garments.
One of the most creative of these reclaimed yarns are by Darn Good Yarn, who uses Sari fabric to make their silk ribbon yarn.
By doing this you not only help small businesses and businesses that care about the environment, but you also help to make your corner of our beautiful planet a better place. Of course, creating beauty out of these yarns is an added benefit!
Did You Know? KnitPal sources much of their merino yarn from small, female-owned businesses.
Using crochet and knitting to live a more sustainable life every day
Now that you’ve decided to embark on this new crafting adventure, you only need to decide what to make first.
We’ve collected a range of patterns for items that you can make, ranging from home cleaning supplies to self care and market and produce bags.
Keeping your home sparkling clean
Keeping your home clean and crafting to do so? Yes, please!
Some of the easiest items to make for cleaning, are dishcloths, scrubbies, and sponges. Dishcloths can be crocheted or knitted, while the scrubbies are usually crocheted.
Choose a rougher type of cotton or bamboo yarn (or even jute) for these to make sure that they can do the necessary scrubbing. And simply throw them in the wash when they get dirty!
- Here’s a collection of easy-to-make dishcloths by Crochet Life
- Another pattern from Crochet Life using crocheted moss stitch
- We also love this scrubbie pattern by Crochet Dreamz that you can unroll to let it dry quickly
Finally, for some extra fun, and a potholder or two to brighten up the kitchen in no time.
Pampering your face and body
Whether it’s pads for makeup removal or to lightly exfoliate your skin, to shower puffs and soap savers to use in place of shower gel in plastic bottles, you can easily stock your beauty bag with reusable and sustainable items. They make perfect gifts as well!
Make your next spa day an earth-friendly day as well with these great items to knit and crochet:
- This face scrubbies pattern also has printable packaging, making it perfect for gift-giving
- These flower face scrubbies are too cute not to make!
- We also love this tea rose spa set by Sweet Softies
Market and shopping bags for your retail therapy
Buying produce can mean lots of plastic bags or plastic netting. Using your own, lightweight but strong market bags not only looks good, but helps to save the planet as well as you’ll be using less plastic every time that you shop.
Many of the market bags may look too small for packing produce, but the way in which they are constructed means that they can stretch while still remaining as strong as ever.
Tip: Color-code your produce/market bags according to their size. You can just grab the right color when you’re in the shop and don’t have to try and get potatoes or squash into a too-small bag.
- A selection of crocheted market bags by Pattern Center
- How To Makes also has a great selection of crocheted shopping bags
- Here are some knitted market bag patterns that are just as pretty and sturdy
What will you make first? Be sure to show us in the KnitPal Facebook Group – we’d all love to see your creations!