I tried a new spinning technique recently with FABULOUS results. I used to haunt the thrift shops looking for sweaters to unravel, but I always felt a twinge of guilt ruining a perfectly good sweater. It didn't feel like "recycling" at all--because I was destroying a fine knitted garment to make yarn.
I was at the thrift store, these thoughts running through my head, when I came across a baby blue cashmere sweater that had been accidentally felted beyond all recognition. It was mishapen, tiny, and ruined. But soft as a baby's butt in heaven. So I bought it and brought it home, not sure what to do with it.
One night, I sat down with the scissors and cut the sweater into a long spiral, starting at the bottom and working round and round until I had a 3/4-pound of "yarn"--basically, cashmere felted sweater cut into a continuous 1/4 inch wide strip.
I plied it with thread, creating a more yarnish appearance, but i wasn't finished. Then, I spun it with some raw wool, carded and dyed here in my kitchen. The lofty luscious finished product is a yarn I call "felted heaven." True recycling--taking something that has already been destroyed and making something new and beautiful.