Use a Bicycle Wheel to Unravel Old Sweaters Back into Yarn

© Imogen Hedges

You've got your hat made from a rocking chair, and your scarf from a clock: now what to do? Unravel them and make something new.

And how better to do that than by using a bicycle wheel and a tea kettle. How very English.

© Imogen Hedges

Created by Imogen Hedges, a student at London's Kingston University, and noted in pfsk, this Rube-Goldberg-like machine is based on pedal power and steam. And an important environmental realization.

Her starting point for the project was the discovery that some charity shops devoted hours to unravelling home-made sweaters:

They can make more money out of selling the wool than they can from the sweaters.

© Imogen Hedges

It's funny but serious. Hedges won a prize for the un-knitting machine. The machine is made out of an old bicycle frame, a kettle, a spindle, and a stool.

© Imogen Hedges

The un-knitter (?) sits on a chair and pedals the bicycle wheel while the wool passes through steam coming out of a kettle. The wool is softened as it passes over the steam.

© Imogen Hedges

The wool is then collected on a spindle.

As she explains:

My grandmother spent the whole time knitting sweaters but my mum threw them all away once we’d grown out of them because she didn’t think anyone would want them. With my machine you’d be able to take them apart and knit something new.

Tags: Designers | London | Recycled Consumer Goods | Recycled Fashion

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