Monday, 5 May 2008

Human or Fibre Machine?

Apparently there was something on TV recently about someone who was cultivating their belly button fluff to spin and knit into something? Now I missed this little gem of national tv programming but heck, if people are happy to collect, spin and knit up their favourite pet's hair, then why not use human lint too?

Warning: I suggest that you do not read on if you have just fallen off your chair, utterly revolted by this concept.

However, if you happen to think that it is safe to call into question the sexiness of your partner's knitting efforts and think that it is safe to leave said knitter unattended with her blog while you fly home on an aeroplane, please do read on...!

So, in the name of sustainable eco-fibre research for today's knitting community, I have been investigating the contents of the Fella's tummy button over the past two weeks. I have noted his unstinting and diligent ability to produce about an inch of fingering weight lint per day, in a variety of quite attractive whites, greys, blues and blacks. I find this oddly fascinating.

Yup, I have pictures of the output but I will save them - you know, just in case the sexiness of one of my knitting projects is called into question again? (Oh, am I going on?!)

So hmm. Let's think about this logically for a moment. There are 36 inches in a yard and it would take around 200 yards of yarn to make a nice pair of simple mitts, such as the Thank You Mitts?
Oh - unless my arithmetic is out, that is not good. Doesn't that mean it would take me 7200 days or 19.72 years to harvest sufficient Fella lint to make a pair of mittens? Let's round that up to 20 years to account for any fibre wastage during spinning.

It just seems like a lot of effort over time for a small project outcome. Especially when, a quick look on the net tells me that it is possible to pick up a skein of Pro Natura Zitron Trekking sock yarn for about £7.50. In my personal view and very limited experience of human lint colours, their range does seems to include certain shades that might be quite a close match?

So, almost regrettably, I hereby conclude that stashing human lint is not a worthwhile endeavour. (That is, unless someone starts up a Human Lint Cooperative. Where people who possess the astonishing ability to create belly button fluff sign up to make weekly lint deliveries?)

Personally, I think that someone would really have to be feeling very thrifty or love their partner a lot to collect their lint everyday, for 20 years, in order to make them a pair of mitts.

Mind you - a pair of handspun lint mitts would make a very novel and unique 20th Anniversary present from a knitter to their partner?

"Ohhh darling, thank you for the new china and this beautiful platinum ring. In return, I made these mittens just for you - from you - in celebration of the 20 marvelous years that we have spent together."

[Cue stunned silence and people studiously avoiding eye contact?!]

Hurrumph - my first ever socks, not sexy when worn in bed...? Pah! What'd'ya mean?!


Robynn said...

We should start a consciousness-raising campaign: Sexy Soxy Sleepers. Whaddyathink?

Kelli said...

Perhaps you just need to employ some lace into the design. ;)