How can I reuse or upcycle trainer socks/glove socks/foot socks?

About seven or eight years ago now, I had a bit of a thing for trainer socks/glove socks/foot socks — those socks that stop before your ankle so they almost disappear in trainers/sneakers — and bought quite a few pairs to wear for work.

Now seven or eight years later, arrgh, I hate them. They always slip down so my trainers rub the back of my ankle, and they’re useless in walking boot style shoes where you need the protection further up as well. It’s not even a “hide-the-unsightly-cuff” issue any more because my jeans are always way too long so you can barely see my shoes, let alone a gap between the hem & the shoe, and on the very, very rare occasion I wear a skirt or shorts, I’ll be more than likely wearing them with nice no-sock shoes or flip-flop/sandals anyway.

After slowly growing to despise them over the last couple of years, I decided to evict them from my sock drawer last night. I counted 24 pairs. Yes, I clearly had a big thing for them seven or eight years ago.

Anyway, now I have 24 pairs of ankle-cuff-less foot socks which need reusing or upcycling. They’ve all been well used so aren’t really in a position to be passed along – but equally, have a bit more life in them than to just become cleaning rags — so I’m looking for upcycling ideas really.

Some ideas I’ve had so far: attached two pairs together to make above-ankle socks; Alice’s moth-repellent idea; stuff with cat nip to make a cat toy; use them to make sock monsters (although they’re mostly plain so might be dull).

Any other ideas?

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12 Responses to “How can I reuse or upcycle trainer socks/glove socks/foot socks?”

  1. There’s always cutting them into rings or strips to use in weaving, knitting, or crochet. Socks make great bath mats and washcloths!

  2. sherry says:

    I have tons of them from when my sons went through that stage. I now use them for cleaning, especially in the bathroom. Slip one over your hand like a glove and clean away.

  3. anna says:

    Fill with expired or not your favorite flavor to drink coffee beans and make a knot or sew closed to make a coffee scented air refreshened.

    Or put some other rags or toy stuffing and catnip, and make a knot or sew closed to make a new cat toy.

  4. beaverlodge says:

    When I have socks, underwear, old t shirts, etc. that are “done”, I wash them one more time and save them for a trip. I pack those “oldies” to discard along the way rather than wash them again. It beats looking for a laundromat or paying some else to wash them again. When I’m done with the item, I leave it beside the waste basket should someone else find another use for it. By the end of the trip I have room in my suitcase for the souvenier T-shirts.

  5. Medeea says:

    Wear around the house or at night, in bed.

  6. Barbara in AZ says:

    Catnip in one, and cover up with 2nd. Tie or sew the end and you have happy cats!

  7. Jenny says:

    I love this post! Such a clever idea for socks. I like what Sherry says about using them as gloves for cleaning!

    What about upcycling old bikinis? I found this blog about it. Check it out!

  8. Fashionitsa says:

    Hi! I just discovered this site and it is very interesting!

    Anyway, I made up a way to reuse old or “orphan” socks some months ago. I used them to make “air stoppers” for the door. Check it on my site:

    It is in Greek, but you will get to understand how it is done because I have a lot of pictures. You can always fill it with the cloth left-overs or other fabrics you haven’t found use for.

  9. Uluska says:

    Make long socks out of them for your dog.

  10. Patricia Layton says:

    My mom used to take old dollar store bars of soap and put them into a cuffless sock with the opening on an edge. She’d then use straight pins (nowadays could even use decorative pins) to pin a border of lace around the soap. We’d put them into our drawers as sachets.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Large socks are good to store golf balls and other small bolls in them, toys and hang in a garage.

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