DIY projects with old socks

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I have officially nominated myself, The Sock Queen.  This past weekend during the ominous snowstorm, I had plenty of time to wax philosophically, make vanilla cupcakes with crazy amounts of buttercream frosting and create projects from socks.  I think about socks all the time.  Not just because I work in a sock factory, but because I can’t stop thinking of ways to reuse them and keep the single socks out of the dumpster.  Part of this stems from the project I’ve been assigned to at work.  In case you didn’t catch my last post which was about socks, I am cleaning out part of a warehouse for a company that has been around since 1922.  It looks like it hasn’t been cleaned since then too.  Ssshhhh…don’t let them hear me say that. 😉  I say that in love, but seriously, it seems like I am surrounded by socks 24/7.  My project is involved with all the samples, rejects, cast offs.  Years of production, design and yarn tests sitting dormant, piling up and tempting the office mice to make pretty, cozy little homes.  They make their way to several charities around the area and even recently I delivered some to an animal shelter where they make microwave bags for the baby animals to keep them warm.  (See # 3 below)  Never mind that I was bawling my face off waiting to drop off my donation; listening to the sad animals yelping and the glimpse of rows and rows of metal cages about put me over the edge…aaaccckkkk.  I can’t go there right now.  Anyway, the socks will be put to good use at the animal shelter.

If you’ve ever had a hankering to type in “old socks” as a search term into the Pinterest search bar, you’ll see I’m not the only one who seems to obsess about all these loose stragglers.  So, are you ready to learn how to do 7 different DIYs with your old socks?  Hope you have some cute ones sitting around, not just boring old, smelly gym socks. 🙂

  1. Dryer balls.  Have you ever put your blankets, fresh from the washer into the dryer only to find them wadded up when the dryer buzzer sounded and a big wet spot in the middle?  This is a great way to keep the clothes and especially blankets or heavy items circulating around in the dryer for more balanced drying.  I’ve washed quilted winter coats and dried them but then they came out of the dryer all lumpy.  So, try balling up a sock by tying a knot or two until you get a ball and then tuck the end over.  You can sew a couple whip stitches in to keep it in place, or just do what I did; keep knotting it up and tucking until you get the thing to stay in place.  Try putting a couple drops of essential oil on the ball before tossing in the dryer.  It adds a lovely, fresh and natural smell without all the chemicals of a dryer sheet.

    dryer balls. The fluffy sock looks better but didn't work as well as the one with all the knots.
    dryer balls. The fluffy sock looks better but didn’t work as well as the one with all the knots.
  2. Bracelet or necklace holder.  This sock place that I work at actually knits onsite.  So, they have these yarn cones laying around that I wondered what I could do with these unique cardboard-esque shapes.  I brought them home around Christmas and was planning on modpodging them with Christmas scrapbook paper and decorating them like a little trees.  I never got to that project but I tried this instead.  All I did was put a cute sock over the cone and stuff the edges of the sock over the top and bottom.  Cute to display my bracelets and doubled up necklaces.
    Yarn cones
    Yarn cones

    pretty cones for bracelets and necklaces
    pretty cones for bracelets and necklaces
  3. Microwaveable rice bags.  This is what the animal shelter wanted the single socks for.  We have tons of these hot rice bags laying around the house now.  We use these to warm our hands and feet, to put on sore muscles, or even pop them in the freezer to use as a cold compress.  Just put about 2-3 cups of rice (more if you want a fuller sock, but they take longer to heat up) in the sock and you can either tie it in a knot or do a quick closure either by hand or your sewing machine.  Heat in the microwave about 30 seconds at a time until you reach the desired temperature, but don’t over do it or you will burn the rice!

    microwaveable hot sock - great for sore neck muscles
    microwaveable hot sock – great for sore neck muscles
  4.  Door draft blockers.  Exactly the same steps above to make your own, but this time, it’s to keep the drafts out of your house.  Put by the doors and windows.

    door draft blockers
    door draft blockers
  5. Cuff bracelets.  I bought some plain, plastic cuffs and just wrapped it with a sock remnant.  You can use hot glue to adhere, but I would advise using a fabric glue so it stays put.

    bracelet cuff made from a cute sock
    Top left is the plastic cuff
  6. Key cuffs.  Perfect to tuck a house key in while jogging or exercising.  I cut the end off a sock (the cute end with this adorable embroidered design) and then sewed the unfinished edge.  I left a small pocket open to tuck a key into.

    key holder cuff from the top of a cute sock.
    key holder cuff from the top of a cute sock.
  7. Fingerless gloves.  Ahhh, perfect timing for this project.  It’s darn cold outside and takes me hours to warm up, so typing can be quite a chore unless I don these cute gloves.  I thought this was going to be hard and labor intensive, but it only took about 40 minutes to cut and sew up the fingers.  I used these cute mismatched socks and think they look awesome!  I’ll probably use warmer socks next time, but thought this was pretty good for my first shot.  First, you need to cut off the toe of the sock.  Next, you cut small notches in the fabric which you will sew back up so they can accommodate your fingers.  Sew up the notches you just cut so they will be the “v” part between your fingers.  The heel area of the sock and the thumb hole might take a couple tries to get the spacing right, but you should get a nice looking glove when you’re finished.

    mismatched pair of socks before I cut them
    mismatched pair of socks before I cut them
This was the hard part; sewing the "v" between each finger
This was the hard part; sewing the “v” between each finger
and voila!
and voila!
Cute and warm!
Cute and warm!

Stay tuned for more sock projects which I’m sure will come.

Otherwise, I can’t wait to move on to my next project; sharing with you how to create a backyard wildlife habitat.  I have created one in my own suburban yard that I’m proud to say has already been certified!

xo

 

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6 Responses to DIY projects with old socks

    • Thank you for the idea-great minds think alike! I just contacted one organization which was looking for actual amputee socks, so that was a dead end, but I’ll keep looking. Hugs~! Thanks for reading today!

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