Wednesday, December 3, 2014

How To: Make Arm Warmers out of Socks (in Two Steps)

I finished my first semester of grad school!

In celebration, let's talk about something creative....that's not focused on words. (I'll try to get back to words later. I still need to see where my series The Work is heading. Those ghosts are calling my name.)

I digress. On to arm warmers!

Have you ever had a favorite pair of socks that you just can't bear to throw away, even though your toes are poking through the ends or your heel's hanging out the back? Or have you ever bought a pair of really cool socks only to find out they don't fit (or don't fit without stretching out the interesting graphic)?

Cute, interesting, and oddball socks have long been a passion of mine. At one point, I think I had socks for most of the well known holidays not to mention socks with random characters, animals and text on them.

Of course, they wear out, but typically, the most interesting part of the sock remains intact.

It seems a waste to chuck them in the trash bin, so I choose to go green and recycle.... Below is a pair of wrist warmers created out of some raccoon socks that I couldn't bear to part with. (They're just too damned adorable.)

For this tutorial, I have a pair of Harry Potter Slytherin House socks (they're sized for Juniors, so I knew they wouldn't fit when I got them).

Step 1.

Determine where you want to cut your sock.

I usually do it just above the heel so I don't get that weird pouch that interferes with folding and hemming. As always, measure twice, cut once. If you're not sure where to cut, just cut the toes off first, then slide your arm inside and see how they look.

Th Slytherin socks had the heel pouch colored black, so it was easy to trip a bit past that.

Step 2. Fold and stitch.

Some people recommended folding twice and then stitching. I say, do whatever looks/seems best. Usually one fold works for me. (And depending on the size of the sock, I may not want to fold more than once.)

I tend to sew small things by hand (partly due to the fact that I'm still not used to my machine), but do it however you want. I usually use a back stitch for these arm warmers.

And that's it! Apply a hot iron to help the edges stay down, if you like. Slap on your arm warmers and go. (There is an optional Step 3, which includes making a thumb hole, but I usually don't bother. It's one more step without much of a return on investment.)

The completed version. (And apparently I forgot to take a picture of my left arm, so you get the same arm warmer, repeated. It looks just like the other one.)


There you have it. Two step arm warmers. Put those old and interesting socks to good use.

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