Instructables

How to Turn Old Socks into Toddler Leggings!

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Picture of How to Turn Old Socks into Toddler Leggings!
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I have a confession: I love a good knee-hi trouser sock. It may not be the sexiest accessory, but it certainly adds an unexpected sass when it comes to wintertime; there is nothing cozier to me than to squish my lower leg into a heavy-knit sweater sock and tie off the circulation around my knee. I feel extra warmth (numbness?) from the knees down and suppose that this feeling of comfort is what Laura Ingalls Wilder felt every day after Christmas.

Shockingly, the elasticity on my trouser socks are less than reliable and I find that by the next winter, my year-old knee-hi's find themselves puddled around my ankle before I even make it to work. My husband calls this syndrome "drunken socks," as in falling down drunk. These poor, inebriated souls have been sequestered to my sock drawer after pestering me throughout the day and find themselves amongst a growing batch of loosey goosies every year.

As I clean out my closet every season, I continue to come across these forlorn hosiery not knowing what to do with them, until I found my two-year-old the other day, dressed up in a pair of jean shorts and a cloth belt tied around her forehead. She definitely has an eighties baby's soul in her (oh, joy!) and I immediately knew how to extend the life of my beloved trouser socks.

In three easy steps, you can make awesome leggings for your toddler:
 
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Step 1: Turn your unused knee-hi's inside out.

Picture of Turn your unused knee-hi's inside out.
Fold the opening of the sock approximately 1/8 of an inch above the heel of the sock. Using the opening as a guide, cut the sock above the heel. Repeat with the other sock.

Step 2: Using a straight stitch on your sewing machine, sew approximately around the edge to secure the cut.

Picture of Using a straight stitch on your sewing machine, sew approximately around the edge to secure the cut.
Finish with a zigzag stitch, or an overcast stitch used for stretch fabrics. Repeat with the other sock. The stitched end will be obviously larger. Put the leggings on this end first.

Step 3: Find a fashion-forward toddler and dress accordingly.

Picture of Find a fashion-forward toddler and dress accordingly.
Take pictures that will make them proud (or embarrassed) when they turn nineteen.

Step 4: Now...what to do with the foot portion? Maybe it's best just to trash them.

Picture of Now...what to do with the foot portion?  Maybe it's best just to trash them.
Or recycle? Does anyone have any advice on how to compost socks if they were all cotton or wool?
1426874 years ago
would somebody give me a link to some no-sew clothes that fit 5'' teddy bears or some teddy clothes that require very minimal sewing? oh and i know what to do with the ends of the leggings. cut five holes to fit your kid's fingers in and u have some nice fingerless gloves for them:)
sweater sleeves might work.
If you have still too many drunken socks, you could cut them into strips for something like t-shirt yarn. Sometimes kids love to crochet a basket or other item with a larger crochet hook, or turn them into funky slippers. I love the stuffing idea too as some times a favorite stuffed animal will get a flat spot and could be used to fix a flat in that case. Crafting is fun!
btw - take a look at my funky sock knitter I made.
Mplinnc4 years ago
Is she holding an oreo cookie?
Panga4 years ago
Cut the feet into loops and use them for stuffing in animals. My teddy bear was never cuddlier than when in was filled with hosiery loops!
Adorable
gorgo3335 years ago
why does that toddler have a cellphone
The Handmade Project (author)  gorgo3335 years ago
That toddler doesn't have a cellphone, that toddler has a cookie! ;)
The pose and the way she's peering at the cookie makes is seem as if she's reading a text message. I thought she had a cell phone at first, as well! This is such an adorable picture :)
Yummy =)
Moda May5 years ago
I turn the scrap from the toes into a flower brooch or headband. SO tres matchypoo, but cute. You can also make the toe scrap into a band for the unfinished edge for a more professional look like they sell on ETSY.
you could always use the ends to make sock monster that your toiler would love just lay out the spares and re-arrange until they make an interesting shape that calls out to you. (all of mine have told me how to create them) Then just sew them together and stuff. Your not limited to socks I made an awesome mole/penguin out of and old child's coat that had double cuffs. And my nefews favorite was made out of an old sweater sleeve and an old gym sock. His name is hoover and he just recently (after living 4 months without one was given a button face by my nephew and now he always asks me to tell him about when hoover got a face. Anyways thats one way to re-use your scraps.
Cool! Because I'm still holding on to them wondering what I can do...
canida5 years ago
Cute! I think she needs some 80's-style neon, though, or at least a bit more color to go with her stripey tights. Maybe you could dye the leggings?
The Handmade Project (author)  canida5 years ago
:D Thanks! I have more where these came from ;)