Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Tutorial: use old socks to lengthen sleeves

This idea has been floating around in my head for a while, as I mentioned in my post before, I seem to have longer than average arms and have a hard time finding long sleeve shirts in the correct length. I fear that I may have passed this along to my daughter. She's kind of thin and her little wrists (and tummy) tend to stick out of her sleeves WAY before the shirt is too tight. I just had to buy her all new socks because her feet are growing and I've procrastinated far too long. Now I have all these little socks where the soles are either holey or so dirty that I have a hard time justifying keeping them.

I found this super thick and soft sweat shirt on the clearance rack (see the soft pink fuzzies on the inside). It was a little boring, and it was an 18-24 month, but Jocie is really closer to a 2T. It actually fit ok, but I knew the sleeves wouldn't last too long. I happened to have a little pair of ribbed, fold over socks (triple roll would be even better though!) in the same pale pink in my stash. I figured the ribbing would mimic what was already on the sleeve, so here is what I did!

I cut the top off the sock, straight across right before the heel.

I turned the sleeves of the sweat shirt inside out and then stretched the top (ribbed) part of the sock so that it would fit over top of the sleeve.

There really wasn't a right/wrong side of the sock so it didn't matter which side I paired with the inside of the sleeve. Figure out how far you want the ribbed part of the sock to stick out of the sleeve and pin it securely to the sleeve. Be sure that it is not crooked (you can line it up with the seam on the sleeve) and that both sleeves are even. Because the sleeve was so small it was easier to simply hand stitch it on. I didn't want the stitches to show on the outside so I simply felt as I went and only stitched through the sock and the first layer of the sleeve.

Once you turn the sleeves right side out, you can either use the sock as a cuff or pull it all the way out to lengthen the sleeve. If I do this for myself I will likely snip a small whole for my thumb, but I knew my 2 year old wouldn't go for that.

Now to fix the "boring" part of the sweat shirt, it now had pink cuffs to match the inside fuzzies, but I wanted something else. I cut the top foot part of the sock, as much as I could use that wasn't dirty. I cut as many flower shapes as I could, in a range of sizes. I stacked them, largest on the bottom to the smallest on top. I had some "bling" in my stash and I just stitched it all together on the shirt. Tada! A much cuter sweat shirt that should now last her through the rest of the winter.

I LOVE being able to make use of things that would otherwise have been thrown away!

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