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Thursday, September 27, 2012

Cro-cycling



Yep, that says "cro-cycling". What is that, you ask? Well I'm going to tell you. It's a term I've come to use when I recycle with crochet. You see what I did there, right? Combined two words and came up with a new one! I'm just that awesome . . . just kidding . . . only God is awesome.

This is how I used that seemingly inconsequential plastic ring that hangs around the neck of a plastic bottle after it's opened. I made some fabulous earrings with them, and now I have the kids not only saving the soda tabs, but this small plastic ring as well. 

This is the finished product:


I love the hanging part in the center. You could make them seasonal by using bats for Halloween, hearts for Valentine's Day or even those little jingle bells for Christmas!



This is one of the simplest projects you can do and it takes a minimal amount of time (provided you know the basics of crochet and can open a jump ring).

Let's get right to it, shall we?


Cro-cycled Dangle Earring Pattern
This work is licensed under a

Materials: (see photo)
  • #10 crochet thread (in your choice of color)
  • size 3/2.10MM crochet hook (very small)
  • scissors
  • embroidery needle
  • 2 rings from a plastic bottle
  • 6 jump rings (photo only shows 4 but you need 6 for maximum effect)
  • 2 "dangly" bits (I used 5/8" wide pieces of shell)
  • 2 fish hook earring wires
  • needle nose pliers (optional - I used my fingers to open the jump rings)



Before you begin:
Take a close look at the plastic rings. Sometimes there can be small raised spots from where the cap pulls loose when it's opened. If your rings have those, smooth them down with a bit of sandpaper or an emery board. Doing this will prevent your yarn from snagging and help it move along smoothly as you're working.

(Make Two)
Step 1:
Make a slip knot; going through the center of the ring pull up a loop and chain one securing the yarn to the ring. Single crochet around until the entire piece is covered. The more single crochets you use, the more ruffled your earrings will be. Use as many or as few as you wish.  My stitches are pretty tight so each of my rings have 55 single crochets.

Step 2:
Take one of the jump rings; open it and go through the top of one single crochet. Add one of the fish hook earring wires. Close this jump ring. Now if you wanted to leave it like this, you'd still have some pretty cool earrings even without the decorative dangly bit. (Can you tell I like saying "dangly bit"?)

Step 3:
Adding the (hehe) dangly bit: Taking another jump ring, open it and add the decorative piece, close this one and open another jump ring. Attach the second jump ring to the jump ring holding your decorative piece and then attach it directly beneath the earring wire (see finished project if you are unsure) and close the jump ring. You can attach it to the bottom of a stitch or to the plastic ring itself. These pieces are very light weight and will not pull the yarn out of shape if you choose to attach it to the stitch.

You now have one finished fabulous earring! As you can see in the following photo, they are roughly 2" in length.


These make wonderful gifts for friends or you can make your own in a variety of colors and have a pair for every outfit. You can even switch it up a bit by adding small seed beads or use different wires to make your cro-cycled earrings an extension of your creativity! 

Enjoy them!

 
 

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