You could donate your old sweaters to a worthy cause, but let’s be honest: nobody wants the one with a hole or a stain or the one that shrank in the dryer. Come up with something better to do with those. This list should give you some ideas.
Use the torso of an old sweater to make a cover for your laptop. Cut the sweater to fit and then sew the cut edges together on all but one side. Seal the opening with a drawstring or a large button. The more exciting the colors in your sweater, the more your laptop cover will make a statement.
Hot water bottle cover
The concept is the same as for the laptop cover, but the hot water bottle cover protects your skin from direct contact with the surface of the hot water bottle.
If you’ve got an old throw pillow that no longer matches your décor, or if you’d just like to spice up your décor, recover the pillow with a sweater. For some added flare, use old buttons to create some texture and design on the sweater pillow.
Riding boots are all the rage. Cut off the sleeves of a sweater and wear them as faux boot socks. (You know, the ones that peep out the top of the boots and add a splash of color.) If you’re worried about the frayed edges, sew them, seal them with liquid stitch, or just fold them down and tuck them in the boots. You could also sew some rick-rack on the end.
Want a scarf to match the socks? Use the torso of the sweater to make an infinity scarf. Make a horizontal cut twice the width of the scarf you want across the bottom of the sweater. Next, make a vertical cut up one side of the torso. Fold the piece horizontally so that finished sides are facing each other. Sew the long side together. Turn it right side out and complete the loop. Note: this works best with an extra large sweater unless you’re making the scarf for a young girl.
Trace a mitten shape around your hands on a sweater that’s turned inside out. Cut out the shapes, sew them together, and turn them right side out again. You’ll probably want to create a drawstring of sorts to keep the mitten on and sealed from the cold wind.
You can use a similar technique to make booties and beanies for the babies in your life. Measure, trace, cut, and sew. If you’re a gifted seamstress or if you’re feeling adventurous, you could use adult sweaters to make baby vests and jackets, too. Note: this would be a good place to use the sweater than shrank.
Still have scraps of sweaters after completing your projects? Cut them into squares and put them together as a patchwork quilt. Use sweater squares on one side of the quilt and some soft corduroy on the other side for a warm and snuggly blanket soft enough for the baby’s bed.