Now Fancy That–Reusing Old Sweaters

While I was trapped upstairs a few weeks ago, I started feeling like Rapunzel and got a little stir crazy.

Life is all about perspective. I could look at my time in the girls’ wing as forced confinement or as an opportunity to watch a movie and begin one of those projects I’ve been meaning to start.

I’m not perfect. I’ll did a little of both. I wailed and moaned about being so bored I had to organize my kids’ linen closet, but I also watched some sweet movies knitted hex puffs and pulled out a book I’d picked up for inspiration. It was:
 Sweater Surgery: how to make new things with old sweaters by Stefanie Girard.

While I’m quite intrigued by the idea of making funky animals out of old sweaters, I went to Value Village with leg warmers on my mind.

Imagine my surprise when I discovered that Sweet Miss has taken to wearing leg warmers with her boots to ward off the chill of living right on the sound. Her university features spectacular views and an icy cold wind.

With my beautiful girl in mind, I picked up a striped sweater that I thought would look great as leg warmers. It was a simple matter of grabbing my seam ripper and removing the sleeves from the body of the sweater. Then I unraveled the yarn until it formed a flat-topped tube.

Here’s where my choices made life tricky. I had bought a cotton sweater. Not only was the yarn fine, it also had a strand of fine elastic running along with it.

Suddenly I found myself knitting a simple knit 2 purl 2 cuff on size 2 needles for 47 rows while trying to keep the fine elastic filament in line with the yarn.

A bulky wool sweater would have made my life so much simpler. While it wasn’t as quick and easy as I had hoped, I was quite pleased with the results.

Leg Warmers

Sweater revamp
Sadly, the beautiful picot bind-off doesn’t show in these photos. It’s a pretty way to finish things off. Details make a piece special.

I’m still intrigued with the idea of making monsters out of old sweaters. Maybe I’ll have to make another trip to the thrift store. Maybe I’ll come up with an idea for those old sweaters I made and am still so attached to sentimentally. It’s hard to give up those labors of love although I’m no longer attached to fair isle in blue and yellow or giant floral intarsia.

What have you made from old sweaters or thrift store finds?


4 thoughts on “Now Fancy That–Reusing Old Sweaters

  1. So pretty, good idea. Rachael makes lots of monsters and sell them at a children’s store in Ogden. She buys wool and felts it with hot water, makes the cutest monsters. She also makes felt food for kids kitchen sets. So pretty and doesn’t break and looks more edible. She made me a monster that looks like an octopus with 6 arms and 5 eyes. Then she wrote “Sweater Monster: Roger. I am an engineer, and with my six arms I can do the work of 3 people. Please don’t be intimidated by my success, I would make a great addition to any home especially yours. Machine wash and dry on gentle. Hand made using reclaimed wool sweaters, stuffed with Eco-friendly fill (Made from renewable corn), and child safety eyes”.

  2. I like how the leg warmers turned out. Very cute, but it sounds like it was a bit more work than you expected. Let me know when you are headed to the thrift store again.

    • Kristi, it’s a date. You can help me find some thicker wool sweaters.

      Mary Kay, I remembered your stories about Rachel’s creations, and when I saw the book I said why not pick up some inspiration. It’s fun to make something new out of something old and unwanted.

  3. Pingback: Across One April | bigwhitehouseonthehill

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