How to make leg warmers from socks was one my first sewing projects. I am a self taught seamstress and this was a simple beginner project for son, who was about 5 months old at the time. If you are a beginner or want to learn to sew, this is a perfect project! It is also super quick.
First, you need to pick out your favorite pair of socks! I usually prefer knee socks for my projects, so they go all the way up the legs to keep the little ones warm. However, they may be a little long for newborns, so you can either shorten them or chose a shorter sock, like these Captain America socks below. Since the socks technically fit adults, the leg warmers will fit most adults as well. For today’s project, I chose these Wonder Woman socks to match my daughter’s wonder woman costume (post coming soon).
Next up is to trim off the heels of the socks with a pair of fabric scissors.
Trim, just above the heel, where it first makes a straight line and just under the heel, also making a straight line. Then, trim off the toes.
Again, making a straight line, cut off the rounded toe piece. Then discard the extra heel and toe pieces. Next, fold the foot piece, wrong sides together, in half. Match up the raw edges.
Place your new cuff over the outside bottom of the sock, right sides together.
Clip or pin into place. You can use pins, however I prefer Wonder Clips. Believe me, once you have tried Wonder clips you will never go back to pins (except for a few necessary projects). Now it is time to sew on the cuff. You can use either a serger or a sewing machine. I prefer to use my Brother Serger 1034d, as it is fast and looks neater. I will show you both ways. With a serger, take the leg warmer over to the machine and serge without stretching the fabric.
Turn on knife and go slowly. Remove clips (or pins), as you sew around the circle. You will have a nice finished edge when finished.
The serger gives a nice finished look, however if you do not have a serger yet, you may also sew these with a sewing machine. I made the second leg warmer with my Brothers SE400 sewing machine. I highly recommend a walking foot.
A walking foot, will help push through the knit fabric and keep it from stretching when you sew. I also recommend using a stretch stitch. I used the triple stitch (you only need one needle), however you can also use the lighting bolt stitch.
The triple stitch is highlighted above on the my Brother SE400 and the lighting bolt stitch is to the right. Remember to go slow and stitch around the small circle without stretching the fabric.
Remove the clips (or pins) as you sew. Make sure to back stitch in the beginning and the end of sewing. The sewing machine will not give you as pretty an edge as the serger, but it will do the job. I made thousands (yes literally) of them with my sewing machine before I received my serger for my old business. Everyone loved them and they handled well in the wash. I do recommend turning the sock inside out and tucking in the cape when washing/drying.
The sewing machine does also does not trim off the extra fabric. You can hand trim it with scissors or leave it alone. Voila, you now have leg warmers!!
The leg warmer on the left was made with my serger and the one on the right was made with my sewing machine. Let me know in the comments which character you would like to make! Then, let me know if you would like me to make a video or do a sock giveaway in the comments too! Also, if you need a costume to match your new leg warmers, then check out my Best Halloween Sewing Pattern Costumes List.
Leg warmers are great for Halloween, Birthdays, and Christmas!!
Supplies needed to make your own leg warmers:
- A cool pair of knee socks
- Fabric Scissors
- Wonder Clips
- Sewing Machine or
- Walking foot
- Serger (optional)
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