How to Deal With a Problem Like Acrylic

Tailwind Image
Photo by Soraya García on Unsplash

What could I possibly be talking about?

Well, yarn of course!  One of my favourite topics when I’m not talking about how you can reduce your waste output and environmental impact or crochet!

Really who doesn’t like a good yarn?!

Okay I know that is a really bad one but I couldn’t resist.  I promise I do have worse jokes.  They are really not my forte as my husband will be the first to tell you. 

Let’s start with my yarn addiction

I have been making ‘things’ with yarn since I moved to the UK when I was 9 years old and started doing tapestries.  I think it is a wonderful material/ product and it is amazing how many different forms it can come in.  You can have:

  • wool
  • cotton
  • acrylic
  • bamboo
  • silk
  • cashmere
  • combinations of any of the above
  • and so many more materials that I can’t even begin to think.  I’ve even just found a cone of jute whilst I have been putting this blog together.  
cshow How to Deal With a Problem Like Acrylic

Now since ‘growing up’ or at least getting older, I have experimented with many of the materials above and I also learnt to knit and crochet.  It is safe to say that crochet has become my passion since I learnt how to use a hook and I have been hooking away for the past fifteen plus years.

20190904_121538565_iOS-e1568547404746-768x1024 How to Deal With a Problem Like Acrylic
20190904_121558365_iOS-1024x768 How to Deal With a Problem Like Acrylic


The Dilemmas of a yarn hoarder

One of the things I did do in my youth was to buy up yarn in sales and I have amassed the most amazing collection of colours and weights, which I can not bare to part just because they are not of the ‘appropriate material’.

I think this is a problem many of us will face who work with yarn and cord as acrylic yarn is a hugely popular material and also a very economical choice for many projects.  Whilst many of us textile artists would love to always be able to use natural materials it is not always economically viable as the price of wool or cotton can be much higher than to purchase an acrylic yarn.

Now I am coming at this from a different angle at the moment as I have bought a huge amount of yarn in the past which mostly consists of acrylic or a wool/ acrylic blend.  I feel it would be hugely wasteful and extremely uneconomical to just give it away or dispose of it.  I would firstly be adding to the plastic pollution without actually doing anything with my yarn and secondly just throwing money down the drain which none of us can really afford to do in this day and age.  

I am trying to reduce my use of single use plastic and plastic in general but I feel that in making something from all of this yarn that is not single use, that I am not just adding to the problem.  I hope that you agree.  I have to say it has caused me a number of sleepless nights going over the problem.

imp How to Deal With a Problem Like Acrylic
5ed68904 How to Deal With a Problem Like Acrylicimp How to Deal With a Problem Like Acrylic

The Plan

My plan is to try and create something reusable from all of the yarn in my collection.  This is what I am currently proposing and I hope you like what I will be creating.

  • All of the cotton yarn will be going into creating my reusable bath products. My favourite of which is the Paintbox yarns from Lovecrafts.
  • The DK weight acrylic yarn will be made up into market bags and other reusable bags that people can purchase to put their shopping in.
  • The fingering weight yarn which is in a range of materials from acrylic to wool to cotton will be made into decorative mandalas to be hung as wall art.  These will be made in different sizes and patterns and colours.  
  • All of the offcuts of yarn will be turned into decorative yarn balls and made into Christmas decorations.  If you can’t imagine what they will look like then watch this space and in time an image of them will appear on this blog post.
  • And finally, I might even make some Christmas wreaths if I have time!
20190904_155302711_iOS-e1568547660915-1024x1024 How to Deal With a Problem Like Acrylic


Busy, Busy, Busy

This should keep me busy for a little while!  I know it is not always ideal to use an acrylic yarn but at the moment there is no getting away from the fact that the majority of yarns available to buy are acrylic.  We may not like it and when I go to buy new materials in the future I will make a more informed choice.  I will be buying natural materials from now on but not everyone will have the luxury of being able to make that decision.

We all need to do what we can and if we have things in our houses that contain plastic then I believe it is better to use them and then buy something different next time.  As humans we are able to make an informed choice about what we choose to do.  We all have to live and to just throw away something because it is deemed ‘bad’ is as wasteful if not more wasteful than not using it first.

I hope you understand my philosophy and I would appreciate your thoughts on my plans from both a crafting/ crochet point of view and also a zero waste perspective.  I know I will be making some items which will have plastic in but they will be reusable and I will advertise them as such.  Not ideal I know but we do all have to make a living and everything I make will be reusable.  

Thank you for reading my post and as always I would always appreciate a share or save to Pinterest if you found this interesting.  I’ve included a link below to make life easy for you.

If you would like to keep up to date with the latest posts from Toria’s Trinkets then sign up to our newsletter below.

Off to london


September 15, 2019