Tips: 10 ways to upcycle wool sweaters

It’s always easy to find awesome wool sweaters at your local thrift store. If they end up being a bit damaged or accidentally felted – don’t fret! There’s tons you can upcycle them into. Felted wool sweaters are perfect for crafty projects. Look for bright colours and funky patterns. Although I find grey is perfect for adding colourful felt appliqué designs to.

Here are 10 ways you can repurpose a thrift store wool sweater:

1. MITTENS
You can easily make basic and cozy mittens by repurposing a felted wool sweater. You can mix up different colours and patterns to create super funky accessories.

2. HATS
Stitch up a hat to go with your DIY mittens. You can try a simple pattern then jazz it up with buttons, etc. Or see if you can find a more complicated pattern to test your upcycling skills with.

3. XMAS ORNAMENTS
I’ve made many a Xmas ornament out of thrift store wool sweaters. You can either design your own pattern or use up scraps from other projects to create a tree.

4. JEWELRY
There really is a way to create swanky brooches and jewelry out of felted wool sweaters. This is an easy DIY for making brooches.

5. STUFFIES
Animals and creatures are fun to stitch out of old wool sweaters. And because their handmade they don’t have to be perfect. Use felt and buttons to create faces easily.

6. BABY BOOTIES
This is one of my FAV things to make out of upcycled sweaters. Seriously I’ve made nearly 100 pairs of these for family and friends.

7. GIFT CARD HOLDER
Extend the life of a thrifted wool sweater by making reusable packaging. You can make wine bags, gift bags and gift card holders.

8. PILLOW COVER
You can either make a small pillow cover out of 1 felted wool sweater or a big pillow cover by patching pieces from various sweaters. Either way it’s one comfy pillow. I’m a lover of felt appliqué to add personality to whatever you create.

9. COFFEE OR PHONE SLEEVES
Protect yourself from hot coffee or your phone from dropping by stitching a simple sleeve. Easily add a pocket to hold cards.

10. COSTUMES
I taught a workshop called Make Your Own Superhero Outfit years ago. One of the projects was making magic wands, superpower bracelets and eye masks out of repurposed wool sweaters. It can be done!

I’m sure there’s more that can be created from wool sweaters. I hope you try one or more of my top 10 ways to reuse a thrift store wool sweater. Be sure to share your favourite DIYs and how you reuse old clothes.

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