CareMats for the Homeless

We do not currently have CareMat Classes available. But we do welcome donations of these sleeping mats for people who are homeless. We will distribute them through our homeless ministries.

Please contact if you have CareMats you would like for us to distribute.

 

From the instructions and video link below, learn:

  • How to make "plarn" (plastic yarn) from your plastic grocery bags
  • How to crochet plarn into a mat for the homeless to carry and sleep on

 

Pattern for CROCHETED CARE MATS FOR THE HOMELESS

SUPPLIES::Large crochet hook (10 mm, 11.5 mm, or 15.75 mm); Scissors; Lots of plastic bags (approx 500 per mat)

**For those that are new to crocheting, or who struggle with pain from arthritis or carpal tunnel syndrome, it is recommended to use the 15.75 mm hook.**

Making the “Ball of Plarn”

** It is best to use “average grocery/supermarket type” bags.  Adding too many loops of thick, department store bags will make the plarn harder to connect, and will be harder to crochet using a 10 mm size crochet hook!**

  1. Fold bags lengthwise and cut off seamed ends and handles. (these can be saved for recycling)
  2. Cut loops 2 ½- 3 inches wide. You should get 5 loops for an average grocery bag.
  • If plastic is thicker, cut smaller loops (approx 2 inches)
  • If plastic is thinner, cut thicker loops (approx 3-4 inches)
  1. Connect the loops together by passing one loop thru the other and pulling tightly to keep the knots small.
  2. Wind the knotted loops into a ball.

Crocheting the Mat:

**We typically use a single crochet stitch (SC) in our pattern.**

  1. Make a loop and push hook thru the hole.  This is called a “slip knot”.
  2. Wrap the plastic around the hook and pull it back thru the hole.
  3. Repeat until the chain stitch (CH) is approx 30 inches long
  4. Do not pull tightly. Keep all stitches loose.
  5. Make an extra “turning chain (tch)”. THIS MUST BE DONE AT THE END OF EVERY ROW.
  6. To start next row, flip mat over, pull hook thru the 2nd hole (skip one hole).
  7. Wrap the yarn around the hook once and pull thru.
  8. Wrap the yarn around the hook again and pull thru both loops on the hook.
  9. Repeat to the end of the row. Make a turning chain and start again.
  10. Repeat until the mat is approx 6 feet long.
  11. CONGRATULATIONS! Someone will not have to sleep on the ground tonight!

 

**Approximate stitches  per row according to crochet hook size –

10 mm hook – 48 to 50 stitches per row

11.5 mm hook – 44 stitches per row

15.75 mm hook – 34 to 36 stitches per row **

To make a carrying handle: Make a simple chain stitch 80 inches long and add only 2 rows of single crochet stitches. Connect the ends together, using plarn,  to form a loop so the handle looks like a large circle. ***NOTE – the handle may have to be made a little longer if the Care Mat was crocheted  with a 15.75 mm hook!   Please adjust the size of the handle as needed.**

For video instruction go to http://www.lutheranchurchcharities.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=378:bag-mat-project-hd&catid=34:media&Itemid=117