MHL Tutorial: Make 3 New Accessories from an Old Sweater

Hello, lovelies!  How do you feel about recycling?

I think I’ve mentioned that I am all for it . If it’s not ratty, smelly, soiled, or tattered beyond repair, I usually keep old clothes in the hopes of turning them into something new.

If you look around Etsy, you’d notice some sellers using the tag “upcycled“, instead of recycled.  Upcycling was a term coined by one Reiner Pilz in the mid-90’s to describe reusing things by giving them more value, not less.  The opposite of upcycling is downcycling (duh) where materials are converted into something of lesser quality.

For example, an old T-shirt could be downcycled by turning it into a rag.  You’re recycling it but it has been downgraded.  Now, if you turn that T-shirt into a dress, then you’re upcycling it.

For this tutorial, I used a child’s old sweater and upcycled it into 3 new accessories: a knitted hat, arm warmers, and a headband.  I got this sweater from a Freecycler who had kids.  (If you haven’t heard of Freecycle yet, visit their website.  I’ll make a post about it one of these days, don’t you worry.)  It’s quite easy and you don’t even need a sewing machine for this project.

What You Need: scissors, a seam ripper, needle and thread, and a child’s old sweater (the label says 4/5).

How to Make your Arm Warmers:  Let’s go through this clockwise, shall we?

Just make sure to reinforce the stitching around your thumb hole so it won’t fray.  Here’s the finished product:

How to Make your Knitted Hat:  Clockwise, please.

The result:

Joyful fell in love with the hat.   He thought he and it shared the same nose.  Teehee!

How to Make your Headband:

Just carefully cut out.  This will only work if your sweater has a band like mine does.

I wasn’t able to take a photo of me wearing the headband.  My hair got flattened from being hidden under a knitted hat since morning.

That’s it, lovelies!  I hope this inspires you to recycle or upcycle.  Let’s keep still usable things from landfills, everyone!  Have a lovely Sunday.  See you Monday! 🙂

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7 thoughts on “MHL Tutorial: Make 3 New Accessories from an Old Sweater

  1. Gila says:

    Yay, I scored a mans jumper the other day at a yard sale, and was thinking a hat.. but had totally forgotten I can make arm warmers too.. Im a big fan of the arm warmer..

    Oh, I would love to see how you’d turn that man’s jumper into a hat and arm warmers! I take it the jumper isn’t denim? If you have a blog, I’d love to see what you do. 🙂

  2. cato says:

    this is way way cool! i’m always in need of arm warmers because i’m so thin and my hands get cold most often. this is an awesome way for me to make some without having to knit myself using the itchy yarn here. haha! 🙂

    Yes! And you’re helping the environment, too! 😀

  3. I’ve been begging my friend who knits to make me arm warmers forever – but now I can make some myself! The slouchy hat is adorable, and now I’m grumpy because I bought one similar just the other week for $7.00 and now I know it could have been free. Oh well, I’ll remember for next time.

    P.S. What’s a magic stitch? Is it something you can do by hand, or do you need a machine?

    I’m very glad you liked this! Oh, too bad about the hat but you can still make a new one. One can’t have too many hats. 🙂

    I am such a dummy. It’s not called magic stitch. I googled it and it’s, in fact, called the blanket stitch. All this time I thought is was the magic or invisible stitch. Thanks to you I get to correct it.

    So, it’s a blanket stitch and you can do it by hand. Look for it here: http://www.fiber-images.com/Free_Things/Reference_Charts/free_reference_charts_handsewing_stitches.html .

    Thanks, Katie!

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