These cashmere arm warmers are one of three projects I created out of a thrifted sweater. When I found this light grey knit treasure, I noticed it was super soft and beautiful but far too small for me. However, it was the perfect candidate for a DIY I had been planning so I bought it right up at that 50% sale (we usually go thrifting only on sale days). Since it was the heat of summer (honestly the perfect time to buy wool goods if you can bear touching them), I washed my new purchase and hid it away in my crafting bag until the temperatures became colder.
This cashmere sweater is small and has a single uniform colour with some minor cabling. However, this project would work for any sort of beautiful angora, wool, or alpaca piece you find while thrifting. The options are endless. I loved the results of this project so much that I intend to make another in black once I find the right candidate.
If you are using a thrifted sweater, hand wash it first with a lanolin-based cleanser such as Eucalan, which does not require rinsing. I use this gentle wash on all my wooly items and love it. Another great no-rinse cleanser you could use is called Soak, but I usually use that on my other delicates such as silks and undergarments because it does not have lanolin.
Apart from the arm warmers, I also created two other projects, which will appear soon here on Kiku Corner: a neck warmer with felted details and a cozy cowl.
Embroidered Arm Warmers
- Cashmere sweater
- Thread in matching colour to sweater
- Metallic thread in contrasting colour
- Embroidery needle
- Sewing machine
- Pinking shears
- Lay sweater on large flat surface. Using pinking shears, cut across arms near shoulder. Save remaining piece for other upcoming projects.
- The arms should be very snug. If they are not, use sewing machine to sew a seam to tighten arms. Afterwards, sew a 1cm zigzag seam on freshly cut end of sleeves to secure the raw edge. Try not to stretch fabric while sewing, which will warp the top ends of the warmers.
- Thread needle with metallic thread and make approximately ten five-point stars on wrist area of warmer. The stars should be randomly spaced and about the same size, but they do not need to be perfect. We are going for a whimsical appearance. If your thread is very fine, like mine was, go over the stars with stitches one more time to make them more pronounced. Repeat on other arm warmer.