What is the Urban Sustainable Society?

You've heard of the Red Hat Society...those ladies over 50 who wear funky red hats and get together at cafes to have fun together? Well, we are the URBAN SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY! You will recognize us when you see a plarn (plastic bag crochet) purse hanging from our shoulder. We are ordinary community members, making ordinary personal changes, to make an extraordinary --GREEN-- difference in our local communities. We believe that individuals can do so much more, so much faster than governments and laws. We want government to do their part, too, but rather than wait for them to legislate change, we take personal action now to change our own habits, and to teach others how they can change theirs as well. We want businesses to shape up, too, so we talk to local business owners/managers, we write letters, and most importantly, we spend our dollars in ways that make an environmental difference. (Go to www.biggreenpurse.com to find out how women, who spend 85% of consumer dollars, can make a huge difference in greening our world!) This Urban Sustainable Society webpage will help you start your own Urban Sustainable Society group in your community, and give you lots of tips and ideas so you can make personal habit changes and spend your consumer dollars in ways that make your community a greener place, too!

My plastic bag crochet PLARN creations

Find an URBAN SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY group near you!

Local Urban Sustainable Society groups use YahooGroups to form and chat with local community members about green solutions in their own homes and hometowns. The groups also help people meet up and network face-to-face. Find a group in your town, or if there's not one yet, find out how to start one at:


01 May 2009

Plastic Bag Crochet "Plarn" on the go -- How to conveniently take your project with you!

The best way to share your passion for greener living is to be visible in a fun, friendly way. I take my current plastic bag crochet plarn project with me almost every time I leave the house. It literally only takes 30 seconds to get it out, crochet a bit, and stuff it back into my project tote bag. In the meantime, you will be asked what you're doing when people notice that what you appear to be crocheting (or knitting!) with looks like a chopped up plastic shopping bag. Not only will carrying your project bag with you make churning out copious numbers of finished projects quick and easy, but you will have fun sharing your passion with others.

If you carry your projects with you to do on the run, keep the following in a canvas bag:

***Your current project, and crochet hook or knitting needles
***Reading glasses, (I keep a spare pair in my project bag...I'm useless without them!)
***Sharp, pointed, full-sized scissors (thus the canvas tote bag to keep them contained -- they would poke through a plarn bag)
***Folded plastic grocery bags (They store more compactly folded than "bunched"). I can keep my project bag from being too bulky because I know I can cut and crochet about 4 bags per hour, so I just put in my canvas bag the number of plastic bags I can use on that day's outing, (plus a few extra in case I have more time).
***One narrow newspaper delivery bag or Subway sandwich bag. This I use to stuff the trimmings from the bags into. It will hold a LOT, and the narrow shape keeps the trimmings from springing back out of the bag. When it is 2/3 full I tie a knot in the top and drop it off at a grocery store recycling bin so the trimmings don't end up in the landfill.
***My envelope filled with www.UrbanSustainableSociety.blogspot.com flyers, (printed on the back of something else, of course!), to give to those who see me out and about crocheting with plastic bags. When people have questions, I take the opportunity to share my message about how easy it is for ordinary people to make lots of small changes that add up to a greener community.

Be sure to click and watch/read the how-to links at the right of this blog to learn the cleverest and easiest way to cut plarn. And of course, please do spread the word so that others can learn this easy method, too! The biggest complaint I've heard is that it's a pain to make the plarn, so if we can share this method more broadly, then more people will recycle more bags. Yay!!!