What To Do With Old Clothes
Repurpose, Reuse, Restore Old Clothes
If you’re anything like most people, you have a pile of old clothes that you don’t know quite what to do with. Especially if clothes have some sentimental value, it can be hard to part with them and you might be left wondering just what you should do with all the ugly sweaters, outgrown blouses, and too small pants living in your closet.
Hold an ugly sweater party
Everyone has an ugly sweater (or two) lurking in the back of their closet. An ugly sweater party gives your friends and family an excuse to put on their ugliest sweater and laugh at themselves and each other. Hold an ugly sweater contest and award the winner with a knitting class or yarn. Offer to donate all sweaters to a local thrift store at the end of the party. Serve a themed ugly sweater drink and appetizers. Use your imagination to turn a closet menace into an excuse for celebration!
Repurpose old clothes
Take your warm—but too small—sweaters or jackets and turn them into hats and woolen mittens for yourself, your kids, your friends & family, or even for a donation. All it takes to repurpose old clothes in this way is a sewing machine and your imagination.
Start out by washing the clothes you’re planning on repurposing in hot water. The idea is to shrink the items so the fabric pulls in on itself and gets tighter, which is better for use in a mitten or hat.
Once the fabric has been washed and shrunk use a pair of mittens or a hat in the size you want to use as a cutting pattern and cut the fabric out in the size and shape.
After you’ve got the fabric cut correctly, it’s just a question of sewing the pieces together and wa la! You’ve got a brand new pair of gloves and hat to wear or gift to someone.
Some clothes just have a sentimental value that can’t be forgotten, but also can’t stay taking up space in your closet. The best solution for clothes that fit that bill is to make them into a piece of art or a quilt that can decorate your space without taking up room.
To make a T-Shirt into a piece of art, visit your local art supply store and ask for canvas stretchers. Measure your T-Shirt before you go so you know what size to get. Once you have the stretchers in hand, simply stretch your shirt over the corners and hammer into place. Before you know it you have a piece of unique, custom art for your walls.
Turn sentimental clothing into a quilt by picking out a theme for your blanket and finding all the old clothes in your closet that you want to reuse and cut them out into squares that will be sewn into the quilt. If you don’t know how to make a quilt, visit a local quilting center to learn. This is a great way to meet new people as well as turning your old clothes into a lovely blanket for you to use.
Make them carry their own weight
Your old clothes, old blankets, or old jackets can be repurposed into tote bags or even ipad covers! This video tutorial takes you through the process step by step. What a fantastic way to live and promote your green lifestyle while learning a new skill. Why not make a party out of it and invite friends over with their old clothes so your group can do this together.
These are just a few ideas to do with your old clothes. Once you’ve repurposed a few things that were taking up space, we recommend giving your home a green cleaning to make you feel refreshed and renewed from top to bottom. Cleaning out the dust bunnies that occupied the back corners of your closet where your old clothes once hung will be great exercise as well!
We’re positive you have many more tips and suggestions for those of us who want to do something creative with the items in our closets. Please let us know what inspires you here or chat with us on Facebook.