Introduction: Tricolor Rope Belt

How to make a belt from recycled T-yarn.

How opposite forces collaborate, for a change .....

To make the yarn, see Lasercut yarn from old T-shirts



big needle with stump edge, 3x2 meters yarn made from old T-shirts in different colors. Plus same amount for testing, 2 bench vice, 3 pencils, 1 big needle with stump edge.

Step 1: Cut the Strings

For a finished belt of 90 cm, you need to prepare 3 strings of 300 cm each, fold them in 2, and knot them together.

Step 2: ​Pre-twisting the Separated Ends

Pre-twisting the separated ends, as shown in figure A on the sketch. Take one of the 3 strings of yarn, hang the knotted end to the doorknob, and hold the other on a pencil. Stretch the rope between the pencil and the doorknob and start twisting the pencil in counter-clock direction.

After some 20 turns, fix the pencil on the table or the back of a chair, or ask some-one to hold it.
Now you need to turn the frayed bits of seam of the t-yarn inside the rope. You do this when there is few torsion on the rope, enough to see the seams sticking out, not too much torsion so you can still manipulate the yarn easily . ( in case you used seamless T-shirts for the yarn, you don’t have the frayed bits sticking out)

Now continue twisting the pencil, until you have an over twisted yarn. You can check this by relaxing the rope a little, when you see this happening in the middle, you are done with pre twisting the first end.

Step 3: ​Fix the First Pre-twisted Rope on the Back of a Chair

Fix the first pre-twisted rope on the back of a chair, the pencil needs to be pointed upwards.

Repeat this now for the second string. TURN ALL STRINGS FOR PRE-TWISTING IN THE SAME DIRECTION! When this string also ready, add it on the first pencil. Proceed with the third string. It is important to have the 3 strings in more or less the same tension and length. As we use different colours, being cut from different T-shirts, they will all turn out different by twisting, even if you count the number of twists you give them. This is because the composition and the height of every recycled t-shirt is different. When you have different lengths, shorten by simply adding a knot at the desired length.You can use tape to mark the spot where to shorten. Always hold the twisted string tight, by not doing so it might jumps out of you hand, making you have to start all over again.

Step 4: Twisting the 3 Ends Together

This is where the magic of the opposite forces works together .See on the sketch figure B

The 3 ends are on 1 side together on the pencil, and on the other side on the door knob. HOLD THE 3 ENDS AND HOLD THE TENSION, do not let them slack, because of the over-twisting, you would start to have knots in the rope. START NOW TWISTING CLOCKWISE, THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION TO TWISTING THE SEPARATE STRINGS. Twist until you have a tightly twisted rope with some over twist. You can check this by gently slacking your grip a little, and you will see the over-twist curl appearing. For the picture we exaggerated the twist, I suggest that in reality you slacken less.

When you are done twisting, fix the pencil side on the chair, or in your helpers’ hand, tape off both sides.

Now you can let the rope go on 1 side, by gently sliding trough your hand, until the over twist is out, and your rope does not move anymore.
I don’t think this rope making will succeed with your first attempt, do keep some extra yarn for trial and error, or try it out with some regular yarn or small rope first.

Step 5: Finish the Ends of the Rope

Finish the ends, with one of the 3 colours, or a contrast colour of you prefer, and your belt is ready.

Use a single knot, twist around 4-5 times, and use a thick needle to sew the end towards the knot.