I’m beginning to think that old wool sweaters are one of our nation’s great untapped resources. Easily available from thrift stores and garage sales for a couple of bucks at the most, or from the back of your closet for free, wool sweaters can be felted and recycled into warm, soft, water resistant clothing with a minimum of fuss.
If you’re one of those people who forgets to take out sweaters before drying your clothes, you may already have some great felted wool just waiting for a little time and imagination, and you could be wearing some new slippers tonight!
Felted Wool Slippers
This year, for Winter Solstice, my wife made the slippers above for me and our oldest daughter, using a pattern from <wait for it> Martha Stewart. Now those are two words I wouldn’t have ever thought I’d type at Natural Papa, but there ya go.
While I highly doubt Martha would be caught dead in felted wool slippers from recycled thrift store sweaters, the slippers my wife made are supremely excellent. They have two layers on the bottom, so they’re both warm and soft on the feet, keeping my feet toasty on our wood and tile floors.
Baby Split Pants from Felted Wool Sweater
We use elimination communication (infant potty training) with our kids, and our youngest is almost 9 months old, crawling all over the place, usually without pants, so we can easily put him over a container or the toilet when he has to go. The issue with that is his little buns and legs get cold, and it doesn’t work well when we’re away from the house.
The solution (as many mothers around the world already know) is split pants, or split crotch pants. They easily open between the legs to take care of either number one or number two, and keep the legs covered and warm. Split pants are how people who don’t have diapers dress their kids, enabling potty training with ease.
A friend of ours made these baby split pants for our little guy from the arms of a felted wool sweater, and they work great! There are a bunch of designs for split pants, and these are probably the simplest, although his parts are always exposed.
This baby split pant pattern accounts for that, and the sides cross over to cover the crotch most of the time. What we do when going out is to put a cloth diaper wrap over these pants if it’s cold. Then it’s easy to pull the diaper off and let them do their business without removing the pants.
Number One and Number Two
Speaking of doing their business, what do you call it in your house?
Us: peezle and poozle (when we’re feeling humorous about it, that is, otherwise it’s pee and poop). I don’t even remember why we said that in the first place, but it’s just a funny thing that we’ve kept doing.
My heart is in the right place.
The strategically placed hearts on the photos come courtesy of Picnik, a very easy to use web image editor. I really like using it with the fantastic Picnik Firefox plugin. This add-on lets you right-click any image on the web and send it to Picnik to be edited (resizing and cropping are a breeze) and then saved to your computer or online profile (Facebook, Flickr, Photobucket, Picasa, or Twitter). As a blogger, I find it to be a big time saver when looking for images to use in posts as I cruise the Flickr Creative Commons gallery.