Makeover — Recycled Sweater Rug
by Diana Durkes
Not that anybody asked me, but in my opinion, crafters are geniuses. They take often overlooked bits of things, parts big and small, and put them together in the most practical and creative ways to make…useful things. Without crafters, we’d be absent cozy felt slippers, long finger-knit scarves and exotic scented candles.
The art and craft of re-using old t-shirts—now that’s eco-genius to develop uses for an avalanche of old cotton. I’ve seen tee’s used for a charming country wedding dress and comfy pants for babies.
Then, this pillow by Taryn brought to mind another plentiful material and, further, how I might transform the foothill of old sweaters in the basement. Sweaters line the racks of thrift shops, too, and the supply never seems to diminish.
To start, I gathered up a pile from the basement with the idea of making it into a patchwork throw rug.
For the rug’s back, I grabbed a Pier One throw rug from the top of the dryer. It was once a sturdy kitchen sink mat until I washed it.
I revised the rug design when I picked up this soft cream sweater. (I know it looks perfectly cute in the picture, but it was really ill fitting.) I took the sweater apart with scissors, and then by machine I sewed it back together in a rectangle shape.
Laying it on top of the Pier One rug, I sewed the two layers together. My machine labored through the layers’ thickness—if you want to avoid this, you can whip stitch them together by hand with thread, or maybe with yarn and a decorative border stitch.
While I only succeeded in recycling one sweater, just one makes a soft, cozy rug. I’m packing it up to send to my daughter in Colorado. It will be perfect for getting out of bed on cold mornings in her first apartment.
How many old sweaters are hiding in your basement? What are you going to make with them?