Introduction: 1 Sock, 3 Products

Everyone has experienced it. You do your laundry and when you pull out your clothes, you find that one, lonely sock. Sure, you could always use it as a spare sock or turn it into a rag or a sock puppet, but is there something more useful you could reuse it for? Something that you can make instead of buy? Something that can make you more environmentally conscious?

In this Instructable, we'll show you how to take that one lonesome, old sock and to turn it into three useful products: a fashionable exercising accessory for holding your iPods, ID cards, and keys while you do sports, a pull-on coaster that doubles as a cup identifier to use at parties to save plastic cups and paper napkins, and a key chain pouch for shielding your phones and gadgets from sharp keys when you put them together in your pocket or purse. We call these products the Sporty Sock, the Coasty Sock, and the Safe-Key Sock.

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Step 1: The Sporty Sock: Step 1

The Sporty Sock: A Wristband with a Pocket

The Sporty Sock is a useful accessory to carry your keys, ID cards, or mp3 player, conveniently worn on the arm or ankle. It utilizes the elastic top of the sock as a secure pocket for all your valuables as well as being a machine-washable sweatband! Plus we think it makes quite the fashion statement ;)

Step 1 - Cutting Pieces
Decide on an object that you plan on storing in the armband when, for example, you have no pockets, no purse, or when you go running. We recommend a credit card or something similar because if your pocket can store a credit card, it will most likely be able to store a few bills and some keys. You can also use your favorite media player (iPod, iPhone, Zune, whatever you prefer). From now on, when we say credit card, we mean whichever object you have chosen.

Cutting Tube Portion
Snip off the tip of the toe-portion of the sock, where the sole is no longer tapered. This will give you a nice rectangular piece of sock to work with. Place the credit card lengthwise along the sole portion of the sock, leaving 1 cm from the edge created when you cut off the tip of the sock. Then, leave 1 cm from the opposite side of the credit card and snip the sole portion of the sock clean off the heel. You should now have 3 parts: the tip, the middle sole portion (sized accordingly for the object you want to store), and the tube + heel portion.

Cutting Pocket Material
Take the middle sole portion and flatten it down. Insert your scissors and cut along one of the folds, turning your cylinder into a rectangle. Then, place the credit card on the rectangular piece, leaving 1 cm from the edge. Cut the rectangle such that you have a 1 cm margin along all four sides of the card. You have now sized the piece for the pocket!

Step 2: The Sporty Sock: Step 2

Step 2 - Hemming Edges
(This step is optional but recommended.)

Since we cut the pocket piece from the bottom sole portion of the sock, there will be two edges that may fray with use. It is recommended that these two edges be hemmed. To do this, fold the edge once over and sew it down. To make an even better hem, fold the edge once over, and then fold that over once again (as seen in Photo 7) and then sew it down. Fold over less than half a cm to make the hem. You may do this by hand as well. Do not worry too much about the 1 cm perimeter on these two edges being shortened, once the edges are hemmed, these two edges can be sewn onto the wrist band without further folding.

Alternatively, you can use krazy glue to prevent fraying on the edges.

Step 3: The Sporty Sock: Step 3

Step 3 - Positioning Pieces
Orienting and Pinning in Place
Now take the tube + heel portion of the sock and lay the pocket piece over the tube portion with the long side of the rectangle along the length of the tube portion. Orient the rectangle such that there is 3 cm from the short edge of the rectangle to the top of the tube portion (the edge of the tube portion where you would normally insert your foot into the sock... the pre-hemmed side). Leave 1.5-2 cms from the opposite short edge of the rectangle and cut off the heel portion. You now have the armband piece!

To get a better idea of how the pocket fits onto the tube, fold in the two long edges of the pocket piece such that the pocket is able to fit the object (the credit card). If the resulting pocket is within the boundaries of the tube of the sock when flattened, then great! If not (for example, the pocket extends past the flat tube of the sock, no problem. Just take a pin or something similar to pin the pocket piece onto the tube to mark your place.

Hem Bottom of Tube
Also, in an optional step, one of the edges of the tube is already finished and neat because it was an edge on the sock, but the other edge (the one where the heel portion was cut from), is open and may fray. You may want to hem this edge using the same fold (and maybe fold once again) method shown in Step 2.

Step 4: The Sporty Sock: Step 4

Step 4 - Sewing on Pocket
Now take the object out of your pocket once you have marked your pocket location on the tube and start sewing! Because the tube is relatively small, it may be difficult to sew the pocket onto the tube with a sewing machine. We recommend using the good old needle and thread.

Sew along both the long edge and the bottom short edge, leaving the top short edge open for insertion of whatever objects you are planning to store in the armband. The top short edge that is left open should be the one that is closest to the top of the tube portion. One of the edges that we will be sewing may already have been hemmed in the optional but recommended Step 4. This edge may be sewn directly onto the tube without any folding. other two edges should be folded in once (exactly what you did to get the right placement of the pocket on the tube in Step 3) and then sewn onto the tube sock.

Use Instructions:
And you're done!!! Remember that extra one inch you left from the top of the tube to the top short edge of the pocket rectangle? You can fold this down over the open edge of the pocket to use as a flap to keep all your valuables secure within the pocket. No extra work needed!

This can also be worn with the pocket flipped onto the inside for a more inconspicuous look.

Step 5: The Coasty Sock: Step 1

The Coasty Sock: A Coaster That Follows You!

Drinking from cups can cause all sorts of tiny problems that slowly create a lot of waste. Sometimes people turn to plastic cups, sometimes this is just because no one expects the guests to keep track of their cup, and it's a lot easier to write your name on a disposable cup! Another problem is that you have to pass out napkins to be used as coasters. The cup booty is a small way to make your parties a little greener by reducing plastic waste and saving some trees.

Step 1: Setting Up Pieces
Now take the heel portion that you cut off in Step 3 in the sporty sock section. There should still be a portion of the tube left on this heel portion. Because of the elastic in the tube, it can fit snugly over a large variety of cups or mugs. We sized ours for a mug, but when we were done, we checked and it fits just as well on a drinking glass.

Fold the heel portion inside out so that when your done, the seam will be hidden.

Pull the tube part up around the bottom of the mug, leaving a little room for the handle of the mug/cup. The heel portion should be hanging off the bottom. Fold this underneath the mug so that if you put the mug down, the heel part of the sock covers the bottom of the cap. Now overlap the edges of the heel part with the edge of the tube part to close the hole.

Step 6: The Coasty Sock: Step 2

Step2 - Pinning in Place
Take pins and pin the overlapping portions around the perimeter of the mug/cup. Try to follow the curve of the edge of the mug/cup, keeping as close to it as possible, as this makes for a tighter and more aesthetically pleasing result.

Step 7: The Coasty Sock: Step 3

Step 3 - Sewing Together
Sew the the overlapping portions together along where you marked with the pins. It will come out looking kind of like an oval. Cut off the excess material along the edge of the seam you just sewed.

Flip it inside out, and you're done! Now you can pull it onto the bottom of your cup. And you're done!

Step 8: The Safe-Key Sock: Step 1

The Safe-Key Sock - A Keychain that Protects your Gadgets

These days, we have lots of handheld gadgetry that we carry around with us, like our phones, mp3 players, graphing calculators, etc. But within these same pockets we also store our sharp, pointy, jumble of utilitarian keys. You can buy some rubbery shield or plastic guard for your gadgets. But they are so pretty who would want to do that?! Instead you can use the Safe-Key Sock to quickly collect your keys in a soft small bundle.

Step 1 - Forming Pocket
Finding Pieces
Remember the left over rectangular piece from when you cut out the pocket piece in Step 4 of the Sporty Sock? We will now use this piece to create the Safe-Key Sock.

You may also need to size the left over rectangular piece to accommodate for the size of your keys, but from our experience, the left over rectangular piece is either just right or slightly small to form a Safe-Key Sock that fits your keys. Don't worry about it being slightly small, the fabric will stretch. To size the left over rectangular piece, fold the rectangular piece in half and place your keys over the folded rectangle. If the resulting half rectangle forms more than a 2 cm perimeter around your keys, I would recommend trimming it. The optimal perimeter is probably anywhere in between 1 cm and 2 cm, but, again, the fabric may stretch and the keys may shift within the Safe-Key Sock so the perimeter does not need to be exact. You may also use this step to figure out the direction to fold the left over rectangular piece to best match the width and length of your key set. Safe-Key Sock that is a rectangle wherein one of the short ends of the rectangle serves as the mouth of the sock holds the keys better than a Safe-Key Sock that is a square or where one of the long ends of the rectangle serves as the mouth of the sock.

Hemming Edges (Optional, but recommended)
Similar to the pocket piece, two of the edges of the left over rectangle were cut perpendicular to the knitting direction of the sock. We suggest that you fold these edges in the double fold described in Step 2 of the Sporty Sock. Alternatively, you may also fold it down once or apply Krazy glue or the like along the edge to stabilize it. Also, if in terms of figuring out which edge to hem, the Safe-Key Sock has one open edge. It is recommended that this open edge is hemmed. If this open edge turns out to be one of the edges that were cut perpendicular to the knitting direction, then you hit two birds with one stone! If not, then you may have to hem three sides.

Sewing Edges
(note: Those of you who have a sewing machine capable of sewing button holes should sew those now. See Step 2 for more explanation. If that doesn't make sense to you, you can ignore this comment.)

Now down to the mandatory part of this step

Fold the rectangle in half if you haven't done so already. If you hemmed this using the fold down method, for aesthetic purposes, you may want to fold the rectangle in half such that the visible part of the hem is facing the outside so that when you flip the Safe-Key Sock inside out after you sew the edges together, the hems and seams are all hidden.

To form the Safe-Key Sock, sew two edges of the folded rectangle in an L shape, thus leaving one side open (as mentioned above, the Safe-Key Sock works better if the open side is a short end of a rectangle.)

Step 9: The Safe-Key Sock: Step 2

Step 2 - Forming Keyring Hole
Cutting the Hole
Fold the sock inside out and cut a small slit in both walls of the Safe-Key Sock as close as you can get to the edge opposite of the open edge without cutting the sewing that you did in Step 1. You may use a pair of scissors to do this as shown or a knife. Try to keep the holes on both sides of the Safe-Key Sock as aligned with each other as possible.

Hemming with Glue
Apply Krazy glue or the like to the edges of the hole. This will keep the hole from fraying. Do this on both sides of the Safe-Key Sock. Alternatively, if you have a sewing machine capable of sewing button holes, you may use this to mark out a button hole prior to cutting and prior to sewing two sides of the rectangle together in Step 2. However, we gave this a try and it may be difficult to align the corresponding holes on both sides of the Safe-Key Sock. We recommend just using the glue.

Step 10: The Safe-Key Sock: Step 3

Step 3 - Putting on a Key chain
Insert the Safe-Key Sock onto the keyring of your keys through the hole that you made in Steps 2. The Safe-Key Sock will be used both folded outside-out and folded inside-out, so it is up to your preference which way you want to orient your Safe-Key Sock. This may become easier to understand as you read the next step.

Use Instructions
To use the Safe-Key Sock, fold the Safe-Key Sock inside-out (relative to whatever orientation you had the Safe-Key Sock when you inserted it into your key ring) over your keys. Now, your keys are contained within the folded inside-out Safe-Key Sock and will protect the valuable surfaces and screens of the devices that are coexisting with your keys in your pocket!

You might be left with small bits of left over material. What do you do with this? We challenge you to think of something creative! We made it into a small hand puppet :)

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