How to Upcycle a Sweater for a No Sew Winter Cowl DIY

There is an easy way to upcycle a soft wool or cashmere sweater into a simple cowl/hood! I realize it’s still summer in most of the United States, but the end of the season is when I start pulling out the next season’s clothes and sorting out what to donate and what to keep. I actually wrote this post and took the pictures way back in February during a cold snap but by the time I had them edited I was already in a t-shirt and it seemed silly to post. So, enjoy the retrospective of my point & shoot camera, long hair, and fake white trim.

That is a whole lotta orange in the original sweater. Yikes! The steps are easy – you can glance at the collage below and I’ll spell it out underneath.

Steps:

  1. Find a wool/cashmere blend sweater sized Small or Medium. Wash cold & hang dry! I don’t do dry-cleaning.
  2. Cut with sharp scissors or a rotary cutter in a straight line under the armpits.
  3. Fold, and wear! The knit fabric shouldn’t fray or unravel unless you really pick at it – the washing machine helps to felt it a bit. If you’re feeling ambitious, you could do a blanket stitch or serge around the edge.

This is another version I made a long time ago and have worn often. I like being able to pull it up in the snow!

So, pretty easy DIY am I right? I’d love to hear if you make one – maybe if we all start sewing for fall, fall temperatures will hit faster.

This Post Has 28 Comments

  1. I love how you can pull it up over your head in the second photo, so clever! I really dislike that many of my coats don’t have hoods, problem solved!

  2. I love this idea! I have a couple of sweaters that just don’t fit correctly through the shoulder and bust area. They would be perfect for upcycling. Thanks for the tip!

  3. You are too cute! I love the ease and pop of color. Orange is such a hard color to embrace. I LOVE it on my daughter, but not so much on me.

  4. LOVE IT, LOVE IT, LOVE IT. MY FOUR GIRLS DON’T LIKE TURTLE NECKS AND I HAVE HAD TO GIVE THEM AWAY. GREAT IDEA. ALSO GREAT FOR GIFTS.

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