frugal friday – making what you need

I’m joining in with Robyn again this week for another Frugal Friday post – and I’ve managed it on a Friday this time!

(Ok, so technically I’m writing it on Thursday and I’ll schedule it to post when I’m not here on Friday, which is cheating, but is also irrelevant because I actually meant to write this last Friday anyway).

This week I want to talk about making things you would otherwise buy, which is really just an excuse to show you my lovely new arm warmers. Aren’t they fab?

They’re not the first pair of arm warmers I’ve made – the last were crocheted and a fetching shade of burnt orange. They were great, and I loved making them. Then my auntie made me some more for my birthday, bright orange and sparkly, with little buttons sewn on. They’re SUCH good fun, and have thumb holes (very professional!) so they’re great for keeping in a bag and taking out and about.

So I suppose what I’m saying is that I didn’t actually need any new arm warmers at all. What I needed was to get rid of a cardigan which has been hanging around for far too long, because it’s not really flattering to wear, but it’s so soft, and has so many cheerful buttons, and is so purple, that I couldn’t bring myself to get rid of it. I’ve been pondering for a while what to do with it, and the other day it hit me – I can keep the warmth, and the buttons, and the purpleness by turning it into arm warmers! Hooray!

First of all I cut off the front pieces. I contemplated just using the cardi arms, and sewing all the buttons onto those, but since I don’t like sewing buttons I thought it best to turn the button bits into arms. Which I did, in a typically haphazard way, by wrapping them round my arm, cutting an approximate length, and sewing them up by hand. You can’t really tell, but they have excellent pointy elbows that make them look like old fashioned gauntlets. So there you have it – one recycled cardi saved from the charity shop for the second time, and one Most Excellent pair of new arm warmers for free, just in time for the cold weather. I’ve worn these all day at work and they’re so toasty.

Have you ever made something yourself when you could have bought it instead? PS don’t tell anyone, but they’re not quite the same… shhh… I’m hoping if I keep waving my arms around nobody will notice

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10 Responses to frugal friday – making what you need

  1. cherisong says:

    Oh, they are so lovely. I am often putting some clothes back into the drawer thinking I will turn it into something else later but I am not that imaginative.

  2. Lorraine says:

    Well done you. I have been doing exactly the opposite – accepting that I have too much to do and will probably not get around to making things any time soon, so buying them instead. I have an entire attic full of stuff-that-could-be-useful-to-make-into-something-else-one-day if you ever fancy a project!

  3. I most certainly do NOT fancy any more projects Lorraine! My own attic is also full of things-to-do-something-with – this wasn’t even the pile so I can’t even cross it off!

  4. Robyn says:

    They really are rather fab – what a great idea! it would have been a crying shame to waste the edging on that too.
    As for making things myself that could have been bought – my iPad cover I guess – made from some old furnishing fabric found in a charity shop. it’s just a simple envelope design, and currently has no fastening still, but the cheapest decent one I could find in the shops was £20 – the fabric cost me £1.50 for loads of it!

  5. Those are fabulous! Well done you. I’d never have thought of doing something so creative! I’ve joined you guys too, on the right day which for me is a first!

  6. I made my iPad cover out of fabric I had lying around and like Robyn it still doesn’t have a fastening. I also made hubby a kindle cover for Christmas last year out of a hoody he loved but had shrunk in the wash! I love up cycling things I would normally throw away.

    Ps I love those arm warmers. You inspired me to knit my own after seeing your orange ones 🙂

  7. Ooh, it seems ipad covers are a popular thing to make! If I ever get my work laptop I’ll be making a cover for that I think 🙂

    mehubbyandkids – well done on knitting your arm warmers! I searched and searched yesterday for the picture of my orange ones on the blog and couldn’t find it, and eventually concluded I hadn’t put it up, but clearly I did! Glad it inspired you 🙂

  8. Helena Romanowska says:

    They are fabulous! Much better than the ones that I made from the sleeves of a jumper that I bought for £1 in a charity shop and shrunk on purpose.

  9. Kay says:

    Hi, I’m a new follower and I just thought I would leave a comment just to say I really like your blog and that I love this idea of a Frugal Friday. I think I might give it a try 🙂
    Kind Regards

  10. Pingback: Making what you need | alifetimeofdiy

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