If You Want to Destroy My Sweater, Turn it Into a Plush Toy.

friendsofsocktopus.comI like to rock out with my sock out while crafting, but have always been a little conflicted about sock monkeys. It’s one of those items that are difficult to envision using recycled materials for, unless your feet smell magnificent. Also, I haven’t even finished the first sock I cast on about 2 years ago. So, hand knitting a few pairs from yearn-worthy yarn, only to cut them up, seems less than realistic.

I’m happy to report that Friends of Socktopus found a viable alternative. Handmade from recycled sweaters, these adorable soft toys are an imaginative use of an abundantly unwanted article of clothing. In their shop, you’ll also find sweater monkeys and owls, alligators…even kits to make your own.

Be sure to sign up for the “I’m a Friend oF Socktopus!” Sweepstakes on their website, and you’ll be entered to win a Deluxe Socktopus or your very own.

Written by Autumn Wiggins

This 2008 interview pretty much sums it up:

1. How would you describe yourself?
An oddly situated performer of thought experiments

2. Do you have any anecdotes about your work (how you got started, frustrating moments, or funny stories)?
At this year's Maker Faire in San Mateo, I gave a presentation on how the trend of green crafting can ultimately address the problem of consumption and waste. Dale Dougherty,the publisher of Make and Craft, later had a gift delivered to me, a staple bound book of poetry: Music Like Dirt by Frank Bidart. This is the last thing one would expect to take home from an event so focused on renegade technology. To my surprise, it was an existential reflection on the human need to make things that I now find myself going back to whenever I need some inspiration to look beyond the materials and processes of crafting.

3. What kinds of things do you do for fun?
In my spare time I enjoy amateur astronomy, outdoor adventures, collecting domain names, and hanging out at coffee shops.

4. What interesting projects are you working on right now?
I'm working to organize community involvement in upcycling, and have a few top-secret website projects up my sleeves!

5. Where do you live? Kids, pets, spouse, occupation?
O'Fallon, IL, a suburb (and I mean a totally typical suburb) of St. Louis, MO. Rather than moving to the more culture friendly urban environment, I am staying put and annoying the heck out of Wal-Mart by throwing a massive indie craft show(Strange Folk) in their backyard. I have a husband, Doug, and two sons: a 7 year old mad scientist named Jack, and 6 year old Max, who we think is an aspiring tattoo artist since he's so fond of drawing all over himself with markers. To pay the bills, I do freelance writing, mural painting, and website design, sell my handmade crafts, teach art classes for kids, and work part -time at a local coffee shop.

6. What new idea (in or outside of your field) has excited you most recently?
The concept known as "Cradle-to-Cradle" is a blueprint for sustainability that states everything we manufacture should be either biodegrable, infinitely recyclable, or intended to be upcycled. This is the basis for many of my ideas of how the crafting community can be more widely involved in solving the environmental crisis.

7. What is your favorite food/color/tool?
granola/green/sewing machine!


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  1. there is something about sock monkeys that creep me out, i like the socktopus WAY better!!! I love that they made it out of sweaters- they are so abundant at the thrift store.

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