How to Make Recycled Longies

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This is a picture tutorial on how to make wool longies from sweater sleeves.   I get my sweaters from thrift stores and if you look at my post Welcome to the Wool Addiction , you can see how I choose my wool.

This is the sweater after felting in the laundry machine.  I wash on hot and dry on regular temperature.  I usually dry it for about 20 minutes.

Then I cut off the sleeves…  Eventually I will use up the whole sweater in a variety of projects, including stuffing dryer balls.

Figure out how much you would need (from the wrist cuff) to have for the inseam and make sure there would be enough left on top to do the rise minus the waist band ( ie. The rise that needs to cover the bum).

Cut into the sleeve and remove a little bit along the inseam of the sleeve. Don’t take out too much that your babies bum won’t fit. Remember that he/she will be wearing fluff!

This creates a v-shape piece when you remove it.

Line up the two sleeves and cut off equal amounts from both across the top.


Pull one sleeve inside the other so that the outside one is inside out and the inside one is right side out. ie. both good sides are touching each other.

Sew or serge them together… you should see a seam on the outside inseam as well as on the inside inseam.

Add your waistband by folding over a piece of fabric and putting an elastic inside. I prefer to use wool interlock blend waist bands which don’t require an elastic inside because they are stretchy.  These longies with interlock look like this  –

But, I will continue with another pair of longies to show you how to do a waistband with wool from the same sweaters as the legs.

Once the pants are turned inside out this is how they should look and these are the scraps you should have left over from the sleeves.

I measured that I had enough sleeve left over from the top of the sleeve to make the waist band.  If you don’t, cut out the full length (or half lengths sewn together) from the remainder of the sweater.  Cut straight ends unlike mine (I was maximizing the use of the wool that I have).  You want these to be the same or slightly shorter in length than the waist of the pants already sewn together.  The elastic is what will make it snug.

I was able to use remnants from the sleeves to make a waist band.  I typically don’t do this; I just wanted to show it was possible because I know there are places on Etsy where you can purchase just the sleeves.

Measure enough elastic so that it will be tight enough to hold the pants up, but stretchy enough to get over a fluffy bum, but not too tight.  Sew your elastic closed making sure it’s not twisted.

Note: If the rise on your sleeves is long enough; you can skip right over the next steps for  the waist band and just fold over the top of the pants and stitch them down with the elastic inside.   It would look like this, but I prefer the look of the waist band so we’ll continue past this picture to the steps below.

This next part may get tricky.  You need to fold the waist band in half right side out with the elastic inside and then put it up against the right side of the pants to sew it on.   Look at it carefully to make sure everything will end up right side out with the seams on the inside.   I put my pants inside out for this step.

Serge or sew the layers together with the elastic inside.

Tuck in or tie off your ends.

Voila! Longies from sweater sleeves 🙂  (With a few scraps left over to stuff into dryer balls)

3 thoughts on “How to Make Recycled Longies

  1. Pingback: Over wol | Mama Anders

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