How To Make Arm Warmers

Whether you're cold or you just want to be unique with your clothing, arm warmers are a popular alternative to sweaters and coats. Rather than buying your own, follow these simple instructions instead. In less than an hour, you'll have your very own pair of arm warmers.

Step 1

Gather your supplies. To make your own pair of arm warmers, you'll need to following supplies.

  • A long-sleeved shirt
  • Scissors
  • Seam-ripper
  • Chalk or fabric pencil

Step 2

Cut off your shirt sleeves. To begin this project, lay your long sleeve shirt on a flat surface. (A tabletop is better than your bed, as you don't want to risk cutting anything that is underneath of your shirt). Stretch out the sleeves to either side of the top. Depending on the length that you want your arm warmers to be, cut off your sleeves. Most people choose to wear arm warmers that land just around the elbow, but if you prefer something longer, cut off the sleeves further up the arm. Make sure that you cut both of your arm warmers exactly the same length.

Step 3

Cut the finger holes. You now need to add finger holes to your arm warmers. Start by first turning your sleeves inside. Try not to stretch the sleeve during this process, as it may throw off the size or length of your arm warmer temporarily and therefore cause you to err in your measurements.

With your sleeve inside out, locate the bottom cuff of the sleeve and then measure exactly one inch up from that. Make a mark on your seam at this point. This is where you will cut the thumb hole. Then, using your seam ripper, cut away the seam from the 1" spot, leaving enough room for your thumb to comfortably slip through the hole. Do this for both of your arm warmer sleeves, ensuring that your thumb hole falls exactly at the same place.

Step 4

Hem the top of your arm warmers. If you like the rough, worn look, you can stop now. But if you want to prevent your arm warmers from fraying, you might want to consider adding a hem to the top of each arm warmer. This is simple to do. With your sleeves inside out still, fold down ½" of the fabric at the top of your arm warmer, where you cut it away from the rest of the shirt. Iron this fold in place so that you can ensure a straight hem.

Then, using a sewing machine or some thread and a needle, sew a straight stitch all the way around the top of your arm warmer. Once you are finished, add a few extra stitches to strengthen your hem and prevent your thread from loosening.

If you are so inclined, you might also want to reinforce the area around your thumb holes so that these too don't begin to fray. You can either do a simple circular, button hole type of stitch around the edges of your thumb holes. Or you can fold the fabric back as you did with the previous hem, and then iron and stitch the seam in place. Once you have done this, you have made a pair of fingerless gloves or arm warmers that should keep your warm and stylish.


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