Mittens From Repurposed Sweaters

In some other posts, I have talked about saving money and going green by repurposing clothing. There are so many possibilities that you may never have to buy some items again. Ok, maybe that’s not quite true but there are still plenty more things we can do with outdated or worn clothing.

Make Mittens

This is the perfect project if you have a wool sweater that has accidentally been washed in hot water and dried in a dryer. The resulting wool has shrunk but it has also left the wool in a very heavy, sturdy semi-felted wool condition.

Use your hands or those of the intended wearer to make a pattern on paper. Keep your fingers together, your thumb slightly extended to the side and your wrist straight. Trace from just above the wrist, around the hand and back to the same point on the opposite side of the wrist. Touch up the tracing to give it a nice rounded, mitten look. Add about ½ inch all the way around for the hem area. Cut out your pattern.

Turn the sweater inside out and place the two patterns on the sweater. Pin the pattern to the sleeve with the pinky side of the pattern lined up along the sleeve seam. The wrist edge of the pattern should align with the cuff edge of the sleeve. Use chalk, wax or indelible marker to outline the pattern on the sleeve. Remove the pattern and pin the two sides of the sleeve together so that when you cut out the tracing, you are cutting through both layers of the sleeve.

Using heavy weight thread, fishing line or worsted wool and a needle, sew the open side, the top and the thumb area together, working ½ inch from the cut edge. You can use a running slip stitch to tack down the cut edge if you are handy at sewing.

Once you have completed the sewing, turn the mitten right side out and try it on for size. If it is too tight, you can open it back up and re-stitch a little farther out. When you are satisfied, you can repeat the process using the other sleeve.

You can also make mittens using the body of the sweater. Line the patterns up with the pinkie edge along the side seams and aligned along the bottom cuff of the sweater. This way you can get two pairs of mittens from one sweater, one for you and one for a friend. These make great gifts too.