Wednesday, December 15, 2010

How to make a cozy sweater pillow

Here at our house it's been cold. I mean COLD cold. Wear as many layers to bed as you do outdoors cold. And I'm not convinced it's ever going to stop snowing. Maybe in June? Since we're preparing to buy our first house, I've been in perma-nesting mode and want to create handmade things that don't cost a lot of money (as in, zero money).

If you've got an old sweater that you don't want to part with but also don't want to wear any more, this project is for you. My mom gifted me with an old cream-colored cable knit turtleneck sweater a couple years ago, and I think I wore it never. It looked like a crop top on me. So attractive! But I didn't want to just give it away, so I decided to give it a new life as a pillow.

I knew getting started that since this wasn't a wool sweater I was going to have fraying issues, but I wasn't to be swayed. I got out my good, sharp scissors and crafted a plan. The size of the sweater dictated the size of the pillow, and I wanted to cut as little as possible (remember the fraying issues?). 

I cut the sweater across the torso just where the armpits met the body, and was left with a wide "tube". I turned the tube inside out so I could stitch together the cut edge, being careful not to fray it any more than necessary. I used embroidery thread to hold it all together better.

Since the yarn is kind of chunky in the sweater, I was afraid the stuffing would start to poke through eventually, a la our $5 Walmart pillows. I sewed a pillow insert out of some scrap white cotton fabric I had laying around to alleviate any pokage.

I stitched the finished edge together on the outside, since it's so chunky that you can't see the stitches. And if you can, just don't look at it!

The finished product! Looks pretty great on our couch.

Even cats love it!

You might be asking yourself, what do I do with the stupid-looking sleeves and neck that I have left over? Stay tuned, and prepare to be amazed.