DIY: Upcycled Sweater Slippers | Jan Howell | Skillshare

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DIY: Upcycled Sweater Slippers

teacher avatar Jan Howell, Designer, Seamstrist, Artist

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Introduction and Items Needed


    • 2.

      Measuring Feet and Pattern Assembly


    • 3.

      Choosing Sweater Colors and Sole Fabric


    • 4.

      Cutting Out


    • 5.

      Machine Set Up, Binding & Heel Seam


    • 6.

      Sewing Top Piece to Sole


    • 7.



    • 8.

      Finishing Up


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About This Class

Learn how to transform wool sweaters into a pair of COZY, foot hugging slippers.

In this sewing class, you will be guided with easy to follow step by step instructions through the whole process. Only basic sewing machine skills are required.

The PDF pattern is included with class enrollment and can be downloaded and printed as many times as you want. Pattern includes sizes: Youth 13, 1-3, Women’s 4-11, Men’s 3-13.

Make a pair for yourself, your children, or if you are industrious, whip some up to sell. Using sweaters with different textures and colors, the combination options are endless.

More upcycled sweater patterns available here.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Jan Howell

Designer, Seamstrist, Artist


Jan is an artist, designer and seamstress who loves creating things with upcycled materials.

Her work is unique, authentic and a little on the whimsy side, as she combines different colors and textures that feel good to the eye and to the touch.

Jan's hope is to design patterns and projects that give others the opportunity to create items that are useful, brings them joy and to do it in a simple way.

Her patterns are available in her Fibers & Twigs Etsy shop and Craftsy.

Finished items can be purchased from her AUTHENTIC U Etsy shop.

Keep tabs on what she is doing, by following her on INSTAGRAM, FACEBOOK, PINTEREST, and YOUMAKEITSIMPLE

See full profile

Level: Intermediate

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1. Introduction and Items Needed : from you make it simple dot com. One of the things I enjoy doing is taking a wool sweater and up cycled felted wool sweater , cutting it up and making something fun with it. One of my first projects was making a pair of world mittens, and they felt so cozy and warm on my hands. And I thought, I bet if they feel really good on my hands, they would feel really good on your feet. So I have created several slipper patterns, but the one I'm going to show you how to do today is the crossover slipper. If you haven't yet enrolled in my house to felt little sweaters class, I encourage you to do that. That will give you a foundation of how to choose and pick sweaters for your and get them ready for your up. Cycled will project in the next section. I will show you how to measure your feet so you can accurately choose the correct size for your slippers. The items you'll need for your project is the downloaded and printed pattern, a pair of fabric, scissors and a pair of paper scissors, some kind of tape to put your pattern together with, and you'll need some pins and a needle and thread. You'll need eight safety pins and, of course, your upside goldens and felted sweaters ready to go. You can make the slippers all of all the same color, or you can make the tops two different colors. So just get gather your pieces together, and you also need some fleece. You can use up, cycled or recycled police from an old jacket or something, and you'll need some pieces for the bottom. I will show you different kinds of material to use for the soul, and we'll go over that in the next section as well. So gather your goods and let's get started. 2. Measuring Feet and Pattern Assembly: to make sure you're sewing up the right size slipper. Let's measure your feet. Go ahead and place a measuring tape or ruler on the floor. Take your shoes and socks off and step onto the floor. Make sure the tip of the toes or at the end of the measuring tape and take a book and pull it against the hell so that you can get an accurate reading. Know where the end of the book is, and take that measurement to the chart on the pattern. Find the measurement and the size if it is, if it airs on being too small or too big, better to go up a size. Go ahead and cut out your pattern on the indicated line and color. For that size, cut all your pieces out, making sure to cut out the notches and leaving that extra space at the top of the of those pattern pieces. Once you have all your pieces cut out, go ahead and choose a binding the binding piece that indicate that goes with the size and cut that out. Fold the pattern on the dotted lines and line up the dotted lines and place a piece of tape or a couple pieces of tape to secure that in place. Go ahead and fold and line up the dotted lines and take Just trim off all the excess bulk on the pattern pieces that might double over and you're all set and ready to cut out your slippers. 3. Choosing Sweater Colors and Sole Fabric: Now it's time to choose the different sweaters for your and colors of sweaters for your slippers. If you haven't enrolled and watched my free class on how to filter and shrink down your sweaters and get them ready for different projects, I encourage you to do that before you make your final choices for your slippers. There are a lot of different options, and the color combinations are endless. And if you choose to just use one color for both top pieces of the slipper. You can do that, too, but it's fun toe. Have different colors and switch it up. However you would like to. You will want to choose a type of sweater that's not too dense and thick. Sometimes when you felt and shrink up a sweater, it can get really, really thick. You could use that maybe for the soul peace, but not for the top piece. The top pieces you want to be. You want them to have a little bit of a stretch to them so that they can be cozy, but you don't want them to be too thin or else they're really wear out fast. So just a kind of medium weight felt it sweater is great with a little bit of stretch. There are several options for the soul fabric of your slippers, so you can just simply use another piece of felted wool sweater. However, sometimes they do wear a little bit more. If it's an adult, you might want to use something else. This is a fun piece of fabric to use on little kids. Slippers, as it makes it non doesn't make it slip. It's anti slip fabric, and I will put the notes and the link to that where you can get that on in the class notes and other simple thing to make them the slippers. Nonslip is just simply using easy liner. You can use leather or suede. Um, you can flip, and depending on what, however, you want the feel you can flip it over and use. That also makes it very durable and helps with the non slip leather and suede can be used. It is a little more tricky to use. It's a little more stiff and not as flexible to so on, but I really enjoy. I'm sewing on weather and as long as it's and swayed as long as It's a night and not really thick piece. Just a nice, comfortable, soft piece that's that's flexible. Once you've made your sweater selections, let's get ready to cut them out. 4. Cutting Out : we'll start by cutting out the bottom soul Peace. Go ahead and take your fabric and lay it flat. Place your pattern on the fabric. Make sure, especially if you're using leather or suede. You want to maximize the fabric as much as possible, so get it close to the edge. Pin it and cut all the way around. Cut out. Make sure you're cutting out the notches and then you're going. Teoh, take the pattern. This is really important. Flip it over. After you remove the pins, flip the pattern over and place on the fabric so you get the left and the right side really important that you do that. Cut those out, remove the pins and this is where you use the safety pins were going to be applying the safety pins to all the right sides of the pieces that will help you keep things straight when we're putting things together. If you decide to use the nonslip fabric on the bottoms of your slippers, you will need to cut out a regular soul peace and then a set of the non slip fabric. So and then you'll stack him on. You'll stack the non slip fabric on top of the sweater soul peace as if it were just one piece treated just is one piece, and then when you're marking the right side with your safety pins, just put that on top of the non slip surface so the non slip surface becomes the right side of the fabric and proceed just as normal. Using that those two pieces and treated it as one piece to cut out the top piece. Take your pattern again. Maximize your fabric If you have grains or lines, you wanna line up those lines on both pieces, but go ahead and place that on close to the edge is possible. Pin it and cut it out. So once again, after you have it all caught out that side, you're going to remove the pins and flip it over. Make sure you flip the pattern over up upside down and put it back on the fabric if you're pat. If your sweater piece does have lines, you want to make sure you line those up with the notches of the other piece. If you even if you care about that, pin it in place and then cut it out, do the same thing for the other color of the top piece. If you're using another color, switch the sweaters out. If using the same color, just find another place on that sweater that you were using before, So it's cutting out the second color. Go ahead and cut it out. Make sure you're again lining up notches or grains of the of the sweater. Remove the pins and flip the pattern over and cut out another. So you should have Teoh four top pieces, all with the safety pins applied to the right side. Really important four pieces and then you should have four pieces of the bottom part of the bottoms. You'll have to for the lining and two of the bottom soul peace. So, as you can see, I used a teal color for the inside lining you Can. You also use fleece for the inside lining piece of you want to of the soul. Now we're going to cut out the binding for the slipper. Take your felice fabric and let's find the stretch of the fabric really important that you're cutting it on on the stretch, so if you pull it to the side, it will stretch. If you pull it on the strait of the grain, it won't stretch. So you want to cut the fabric out on the stretch. So go ahead and fold your police in half and make sure it's lined up. And even so, the grain is so the stretch will be I'm not crooked. Take the place. Take the end of the pattern that says the place unfold. Place it against the fold and pennant in place, so you're gonna be cutting through two layers here. Once you've cut out one, we're going to cut out another again. Place it on the fold. You can line it up right against the end and maximizing your fabric and cut another one out to make a hell tag. It's optional, but if you want to put a look cute, little colored, he'll tag on the back of the slipper in the scene. Go ahead and take another scrap of a calorie of your choice of the sweater and cut out to hell tags so you can just fold it over. Just make sure you just have to complete sets. There you go. Now it's time to gather your other sewing supplies, your sewing machine and let's put it all together 5. Machine Set Up, Binding & Heel Seam: Let's just take a moment to set up our machine. Make sure it's on a straight stitch and the length adjusted to 2.5 to 3. Thread your machine with a neutral color thread and also the bobbin. The seam allowance for the project will be 3/8 of an inch, which is usually the edge of your presser foot, unless you have a really narrow pressure from, and that might be 1/4 inch, so make sure you're doing your sewing up 3/8 of an inch. First thing we're going to dio. It's so the hell scene and then apply the binding. Go ahead and open up your pieces and place the right sides together. Different colors just like this. Line up the back, seen pieces and measure one inch from the top market with a pin. Take your If you're adding us, he'll tab. Go ahead and take your heel tab. Fold it in half and place it right at that one inch mark and pin it in place. Take it to the machine and we're going to so that scene back stitch of the front at the start and then using the seam allowance just along the edge of your presser foot or 3/8 of an inch. So all the way down and back stitch at the end, trim the same. Not really real close, but just maybe half of the seam allowance and then open it up. Do the same thing for the other side. Now we're going to go ahead and apply the binding now to tell which side of the binding is the right or the wrong side. Go ahead and stretch it the strip, And when it curls, the curling side will be when it curls in that is that the wrong side. So the outside will be the place that curls and it doesn't really matter, but so go ahead and fold it in half and mark it with a pin. Place that half point on the back seam. Now take the end, match up the end of the top, peace with the binding strip and pin in place and take the other end and match it up with the end and pin it in place. You don't really need to pin along the way along the whole thing because we're going to stretch and ease as we go as you notice that the top binding is a lot shorter than the slipper piece. That is perfect. That's how it should be because we wanted to stretch a little bit and gather in as we so. So go ahead and using your same allowance back such of the top and begin to so line up the edges and pull and ease in stretch the top piece, which is your binding as you so And it should fit really nicely. Remove your pans as you. So you want to sell over the pins something all the way to the other side, easy and stretching as you so back stitch at the end. Mary, can I see that looks gonna trim the seam allowance again, Making sure not to cut the same Not real close. Just getting that extra bulk off. Go ahead and open it up and we're going to two top stitch. We're gonna full that top piece over the edge and make sure that the seam allowance is sticking straight up and not down straight up and then fold and then pan in place. You're gonna do that all along the edge. So this is a really nice technique to use on binding with using fleece because fleas does not fray. So there's no need to fold it under or Hammett, you can just cut it and it will not free. This is a really fun and easy way to so binding on things with fleas. So once you have that all Pan, we're gonna go to this machine again and we're gonna do what we're gonna stitch. What's called what I call stitching in the ditch. We're gonna stitch right in that crevice with this needle. Place the needle back stitch and remove your pins as you're so and you'll be adjusting and tucking that binding under all the the whole time you're sewing to make sure that that's even and that that seam allowances poking out instead of underneath Just nice and flat. You comptel take your time just so long and not crevice stitching in the ditch Continue to So until you get to the other side and back stitch as you notice, there's going to be a lot of extra there. Not a lot, but there's an extra some extra stuff that's OK. We're gonna take our scissors and to trim the edge flat layer scissors kind of on the side and trim is close to that, same as you can without clipping the same or clipping the back. So it's not too late. Your scissors flat and look how nice the edge looks clean and nice that looks without really having to him it underneath the beauty of sewing with police. So there you have it. Now we're going to take these pieces and get ready to so it on to the soul. 6. Sewing Top Piece to Sole: now that you have the binding sewn on the slipper, we're going to So the top part of the slipper to the soul peace. Let's just begin by so mean and pinning the top pieces together, you need to decide which color you want to be on top, which color you want to show the most. I'm going to choose the charcoal color sweater to be on top, so let's just take the not the finding edge matching. Match it up with a notch on the bought the A bottom part and nine up the center notch pin in place and the side arch side pinned in place. Now that arch side will have a square notch and you'll match that that that will show you how to match that up with the sole piece in just a minute. To do that with the other. The other side matching up the notched edge with the binding edge, the top edge center and the side. Get your soul peace that has been marked with a safety pin, and we're going to place the notched edge, which is the inner arch piece in line with the inner arch piece of the top piece. Make sure we're matching up up with the top color square notch really important. So the square not just matching up and the centre top piece. So for this video, I'm just showing you partial with a sweater sole piece, which is great. Or and then the rest of the portion of the video I'm going to show with a suede piece. So we're just lining the sole piece up with the top piece. So we're gonna be sewing through three layers at the top so they'll be a little bit more bulk. But it's fine, and we'll just these things in using a sweater. Soul is a little bit easier to ease in and stretch, then a suede sole, but it can't. It is doable, and it will be fine. Let's go to the sewing machine, and so it in place. We're going to start sowing at the back heel scene on the sweater side, so bats ditch and just slowly you were going to be easing that top piece in with the soul. Peace. Whether you're using a suede or leather or a sweater, will make a little bit of a difference between the ease of the stretch, so just take your time and just ease that top piece in or stretch the bottom soul. If it is a sweater piece, make sure you're lining the edges up is take your time to remove pins. Line things up. Sometimes you need toe. Lift up that presser foot to adjust the fabric and around that corner piece again, just easing in the fabric, spreading it out. We're stretching that bottom piece if you need to, or if you can. We're just so into that top middle notch. And once you get there, just back stitch and cut your thread, flip it over and also the other half. Now we're going to be sewing on the slope. East Side started the back heel, same back stitch, and now we're going to be easing, still easing that top line that top piece in with the sole piece. Take your time to go around the corners, lining up all the edges and removing pins as yourself take your time. I remember that stiffer fabric, the leather or the suede is going to be a little bit more challenging to stretch in an easy in, but it's still doable going around the top corner top rounded piece, the toe using in house you. So go to where you start. You ended the other back stitch clip. Your threats were not going to clip or trim the seam allowance. At this point, let's get ready to so the lining on now. 7. Lining: I'm going to show you a tricky way, too. So the lining into the slipper without being able to even see the same take the right side of the lining piece. You're going to be placing that face down right sides together on top of the slipper top, making sure that that square notches lined up with the square notches on the slipper line up the center point, the top center points and the side notches. Now on the back, you'll displace that on top, lining up with the back heel notch and just talk the fact the bulk of the fabric underneath . So we have a lot of stuff sandwich in between these between the lining, but it'll all work out lining up that square notch. That's really important that the square not just lined up or you're gonna have twisting going on in the lining. We're going to leave about a two inch space open so that we can turn it inside out for just mark that area with a pin. Go ahead and flip that over, and we're going to be sewing right along the previous scene line on the back of the slipper sole. So go to the area where we're going to the edge of the area where we're going to leave it open back stitch and following the same line all the way around. So on top of that, we're stitching right on top of that previous same line. Take your time to line up the edges and go around the curves following that same same line on the sole piece. Just go around till the end, where we're going to leave that place. Open back, stitch and clip your thread and go ahead and clip your seam allowance all the way around to remove that bulk, go into the opening and start turning the slipper inside out. Now, this is the fun part going to see how this all comes together. Now you're going toe, maybe panic at first and think, Oh, I've done it wrong. The slippers, the lining pieces on the bottom. We need the sole piece on the bottom and that's okay. And that's how it supposed to be. Were going toe for turn it inside out again. So just kind of flip it inside out again. Until that lining, the slipper sole is now on the outside. Stick your hand in there and push out the seams and push out the toes and the heel. I bet you can't wait to get your foot in there, right. Go ahead and remove the safety pins and go ahead and turn the other side inside out. So now that you have them turned inside out, we need to stitch the opening close and we'll show you how to do that in the next section, Just about finished. 8. Finishing Up: Theo. Only thing left to do is to sold the opening closed, take your needle and double threat it with some matching thread and to make a not at the end, little trick is just to take the ends and pinch it between your forefinger and your thumb. Wrap it around your foot pointer finger and roll it and then pull that will created a not at the end. Open up the whole he left in the same and take your needle and insert it underneath and to the very underneath and the very end of that scene. Pull it tight, full the lining under you know about 1/4 evidence 3/8 of an inch and then take a little stitch right next to the thread on the slipper and then take a a little stitch in the fold of the lining. So your is going to be sowing the little stitches back and forth, alternating from the outside slipper edge to the lining piece, and you'll just be tucking unfolding. Did you go? So little stitches back and forth it was just a slip stitch, and when you get down to the end, take a little stitch wrap the thread around the needle a couple times. Make a loop and wrap the throttle and then pull it. That'll make enough and then stick your needle and right close to the thread and then out and then clip the thread. There you have it, a cozy pair of crossover slippers. Thanks for enrolling in my class if you have any questions while sowing your slippers up to send me a note and I will get back to you and walk you through whatever you need help with . I'd love to see the slippers that you make the color combinations on the different types of sweaters that you use to go ahead and post those on the on site. Have fun sewing and we'll see you in the next.