We all have those embarrassing sweaters hidden away in the back of our closets. Those holiday or stripped sweaters that make you want to burn any picture you were taken of it in. No need to worry any more! This DIY takes those unwanted sweaters and turns them into adorable head wear. Beanies are essential for those cold fall and winter months. Let’s begin!
This old sweater has been in my closet for years and may look fashionable, but is very unflattering to any shape. Other than that you will need a sewing machine, preferably with a denim needle to accommodate the thick fabric, sewing needle and coordinating thread, ruler, scissors, and sewing pins. If you don’t have a sewing machine then you can sew by hand, but it will take longer than just using a machine.
Cut a rectangle from the sweater, measuring about 12 inches (30.48 cm) wide and 17 inches (43.18 cm) long. This takes into account a beanie that is folded up about 1 inch (2.53 cm) at the bottom. You can decrease or increase the measurements, if needed. Along those lines, you can always not fold up the bottom of your beanie, or fold up a greater amount than I did. Depending on the type of sweater you are using, you can use the finished bottom edge for the bottom edge of your beanie. Some sweaters have a stretchy bottom, while others don’t.
Fold the sweater rectangle in half, lengthwise. Make sure the “front” sides are facing each other (unless of course, the stitching is the same on both sides of your sweater). Pin along the edge.
Sew along this edge. Adjust the tension/settings on your sewing machine so that you can sew the largest, loosest stitch possible. Also change your settings to a straight stitch.
Sew a straight stitch all around the top of the sweater “tube”, about .5 inch (1.27 cm) from the top edge. Remember that you aren’t sewing the 2 layers together – just a straight stitch all around, on a single layer. Technically, you’re not sewing anything to anything. This stitch will be used to gather the fabric at the top. Tip: When you are sewing around the top and come back to the point where you started, make sure the stitch doesn’t actually meet at the ends. This will make it easier to pull and gather the thread at the next step.
Carefully pull the thread and gather the material together. With some adjusting and pulling, the fabric will eventually bunch. Tie and cut off the thread.
Adjust the settings on your sewing machine back to normal/the settings you were using before. Sew a straight stitch directly under the bunched up fabric. Tie off the thread, and cut the excess.
Turn the beanie right side out. The top of the beanie will have a bunched effect. If you decide to fold up the bottom of the beanie, you can hand sew a few stitches to keep the fold in place. Adding clear nail polish or top-coat on edges will prevent fraying.
And that’s all! If you wanted to add more pizazz then buying jewels or iron-on designs are an easy fix. Apply jewels with fabric glue and let it dry for 4-5 hours. Another way to personalize it is to dip-dye or solid dye the beanie. Dip it in bleach for dip-dye or colored dye and wash it out to prevent bleeding through. Sewing a fluffy pom-pom on the top of the beanie can create a more laid-back fall look. This beanie only cost $2 for extra thread and pins compared to the Asos.com beanie below costing $15.00.