Tuesday, 27 October 2009


Tutorial: How to turn adult socks into babylegs

I briefly mentioned the other day that I'd been making a lot of babylegs for the little toilet trainer. Not everyone knew what they were so, in short: legwarmers. Now that it's cold and dreich here she really needs something on her legs but tights don't come down as quickly as the bladder demands. And they outgrow tights so quickly. And they sag at the crotch. 'Gah' to tights.

Babylegs are great because they don't need to be pulled down, they fit for years (and even double as arm warmers) and it's an absolute doddle to make a pair from a pair of woman's knee highs. Fifteen minutes, honest. So here's how:
  1. Procure a pair of crazy adult socks. They should be at least knee highs, although these are over the knee ones. Yes, really.
  2. The sock should naturally have a cuff / band at the top. Leave that alone as this will fit your child's thigh. Maia is a tall 2 year old (and I wanted them to fit for a long time), so I decided to cut these off at 14 inches.
  3. I could have made the cuff from the harlequin bit left over but I wanted red cuff's so I'm going to use the foot. If your socks are knee highs you'll have to use the foot. Cut off at the heel and at the toe seams.
  4. Just to confuse you, I've rotated this picture. So that's raw edges at top and bottom and folds on left and right. Your cuff should be slightly narrower than your leg bit for a nice tight fit. Depending on the age / size of your child you should cut your width between 2 and 3 inches (on the fold). For Maia, 2.5 inches is perfect.
  5. Repeat for the other cuff. So now you have raw edges at the top, bottom and right side. Left side is still on the fold.
  6. Open your cuff and refold it so right sides are facing.
  7. Sew or serge along the long side about a 1/4 inch in. You now have tubes that are raw at the top and the bottom.
  8. Fold the bottom raw edge up to meet the top raw edge so that right sides are out.
  9. Pull the raw edge of your sock through the centre of the cuff, right side out.
  10. Pin the cuff to the sock all the way around. All three raw edges will be matched up. As your cuff is narrower than your sock you'll need to stretch it with your fingers to pin it evenly.
  11. I would normally use the serger but these socks had incredibly curly raw edges so I decided to use the normal sewing machine. It's fine, the raw edge will be hidden and as long as you're using a normal sock (not a tights-esque one) it won't unravel. If you're using a normal machine set your stitch length a bit longer to retain some stretch. Sew all the way around, stretching just the cuff gently. Because it's so small, you'll need to be careful to pull the other fabric out of the way at the same time.
  12. Admire your work. If you'd like, now that they're attached you can run it through the serger more easily.
  13. You're done! Now make an outfit to match the crazy babylegs.


  1. Awesome!! Off to find some crazy knee socks...

  2. Never mind the whirlwind!...Im off to make somma these for meeee!

  3. Just rewind a bit....how on earth can you sew with those nails?? I'm impressed. Mine have to be super short or I drop pins and can't thread needles.
    Anyway. I bought a funky pair of socks today for the Lou-meister. My aunt looked on all dubious when I told her what I was going to do. I replied that my mad friend Amanda (is it ok to call you friend ;)) was going to show me how to make legwarmers and you have. Woooo. I might have to go back and buy more tomorrow. They were only £1 a pair!
    Thank you!!

  4. I'm going to have a go at this. Brodie could really do with some.

  5. I have an over the knee pair of red and black stripey socks with tiggers on them (don't ask) that are in the 'too far gone to wear any more but can't throw away as there must be some sort of recycley sewing thing I can do with them but I just can't think what' pile. Thank you!
    Now, do you have a tute on what to do with lacey bras that don't fit any more?

    1. Bra bags are ace! They need underwired, padded bras but you can make them as bonkers as you like. Loads of tutorials on line x

  6. OMG! I can't believe how easy that was. Thanks so much for the great tute!!

  7. Thank you for this great tute! I featured it in the sidebar on my blog!