(Collage Images: hand warmer, sweater bag, sweater pillow)
The rainy season just keeps us in our homes for days but we can use this time to create, innovate and be more productive. Beat this rainy season with these homemade upcycling of socks and sweaters! These rainy season arts and crafts projects can be an easy, inexpensive gift idea or a fun way of passing the time!
1. How to Make a Homemade Hand Warmer out of Socks
This can be an arm or a hand warmer depending on the size of the socks that you are going to use.
First, grab a pair of socks. These can be those that stretch to your calves, you can have socks that match or you can go crazy and pair different socks for the hand warmer. This can also be a good way to use socks that have lost their pair. You would also need scissors, a ruler, pins, and some basic sewing materials.
Start by cutting off a hole for your thumb. This can be the heel shaping seam of the socks. Slip the sock on your hand and figure out the length of your hand warmer. You can use the ruler for this. Do not throw away those pieces of fabric.
These pieces of sock fabric will be used for the cuff of the hand warmer. Measure the cuff for the hand and thumb. The tricky one would be the thumb cuff because it’s quite small.
For the thumb cuff, pin one end of the cuff in the inside corner of the thumb. Pin along this mark, making sure your cuff piece is stretched out and evenly covering the thumb hole. Use up to five pins.
Turn the hand warmer inside out and sew the cuff as far down as you need to. Once you are down, fold the cuff down in half and use a slip stitch to fold this into place. Don’t pull the stitches too tight since you need this opening to stretch a little bit when you use it. Do the same for the hand cuff making sure that the cuff is stretched out evenly in the hand hole, you can use up to 10-15 pins. Tuck the seam in, slip stitch to make sure the cuff is in place and you are done!
It’s better to use socks with lines and patterns but you can also use plain white socks and have some iron on patches on it. Be creative and add buttons and patches on your hand warmer making it more unique and personalized.
You can also use old baby socks for smaller hand warmers.
These smaller hand warmers are rice-filled pocket sized hand warmers that you can just pop in the microwave, keep it in your pocket and keep yourself warm in this rainy season.
You just need old baby socks, uncooked rice, and sewing materials.
First, fill your socks with rice until you get a nice sausage shape. Fill the other sock too. Fold the top half, or cut them to size and sew it to close.
You can decorate your cute hand warmers using iron on patches, or sew some buttons, or use water proof markers to draw on the hand warmer.
It takes about 30 seconds to warm these on the microwave. But always check your heating settings and have it adjusted to low or medium before heating.
2. How to Make a Sweater Bag and Sweater Pillow
Ever wondered what to do with that old baggy sweater? The one you stretched out in the washer? Or the one that just won’t fit anymore? Upcycle and turn it into a beautiful bag!
You just need an old sweater, a cloth belt or ribbon for the handle, fabric for the lining of the bag, thread, scissors, and a sewing machine.
To get started, lay out your sweater on a table and cut off the top and bottom portion of the sweater. You would be left with the midrib of the sweater. This would serve as the body of your bag. Stretch out your sweater and sew the bottom part. Stitch across the bottom about half-inch to create a seam for the sweater bag.
Add pockets by using the excess fabric of the sweater. You can use the neckline of the sweater if it’s a turtle neck sweater or you can use the sleeves of the sweater. Simply cut a rectangular patch and stitch it in place.
Sew a lining for the sweater bag by using a fabric, slightly smaller than your sweater bag, and stitch it in the inside. Make sure that the good part of the fabric is showing on the inside of the bag.
Hem the top of the sweater bag to create a finished edge. This will make the sweater not thread out with use or during washing.
Sew handles on the bag by using the cloth belt or ribbon and you are done! You can also upcycle your sweater by making it into a pillowcase.
Use your throw pillow as a guide in stitching your new pillowcase. Insert your pillow in the sweater and align the arms of the sweater with the top corners of the pillow. Fold and tuck the arms of the sweater inside the pillow.
Fold the neck of the sweater onto the pillow, stretch it out and place pins on it while you stitch the corner in place. Fold the other end of the sweater. Make the corners of the top and bottom meet on the pillow and stitch them in place.
Untuck the arms from the sides, pull them across the back of the pillow and stitch them in place and you are done!
We recommend using wool sweaters and knitted sweaters for this project. This can produce a more masculine or rustic feel to any room. You can also use button down shirts, polo shirts, or old flannel shirts and you can use the buttons for the opening of the pillowcase. Be creative and add iron on patches, stitch in fabrics, buttons, or patches that can make this project more unique.