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What to do with old socks


A pair of mismatched spotty/dotty socks.

If you have ever done a load of washing, you may be familiar with the missing sock dilemma. You know – you put a pair of socks in the washing machine and dryer and at the end you only have one sock!  Rather than throwing it out, start a sock basket for the twin sock and all your old socks in your laundry or craft area and you will be amazed at what low-cost, creative, and useful things you can make!

Kids love to create things to do with old socks so get the whole family involved! Here are few ways to upcycle socks and have fun at the same time.

Upcycle socks by making crafts

Most of these projects can be created with minimal tools and you can sew them together by hand or get out your sewing machine. Here are some uses for old socks:

  • Beanbags are super easy and fun to play with. Cut a section of the sock you want to use and sew up one side. Fill with pinto beans and sew up the other side. Hand or sewing machine both work well.
  •  A draft door stopper is so easy to make. You can easily remedy drafts with some old socks and quilt batting. Just fill the socks with batting, sew them together and place in front of your door to stop those drafts in their tracks.
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Life hacks with old socks

Here are a few to get started with, and from there you can imagine infinite possibilities.

Keep car windows from fogging with a sock stuffed with cat litter—really!

  • You might not have heard of this life-hack, but it works. Simply pour the kitty litter into the sock and fill it up to the ankle. Tie a knot to secure it and then slip another sock over it. Place it by your windshield or near your car's windows and the kitty-litter-sock will absorb moisture and keep windows from fogging. Plan to keep one or two of them in the car at all times!

Protect your valuables for storage or for moving

  • Small keepsakes, antique items, jewellery—you name it! Grab a few old socks from your basket and use them as a cushion or buffer in a drawer or box. Consider a double sock approach for extra protection while moving.

Store and protect game board pieces

  • How many times have you lost cards, game board pieces or other items that belong with one of your child’s favourite games? Too many, right? You can have fun by using a few of the mis-matched old socks to sort out pieces from a game. Fill up the pieces in the sock and tie a ribbon around the top. Label it like you would a present with the name of the game on the cardboard label.

Make a beer, soda, or coffee cosy

  • You can customise each cosy by cutting the top section of the sock (leaving the foot part for another project) so you will only need to use the ankle and calf area of the sock. It will be best to bind the edges a bit with needle and thread to make sure the top and bottom will not ravel.

We hope you enjoyed our tips on what to do with old socks. Be sure to check out our other sustainability tips such as our guide for potato water, how to compost tea bags or uses for old tyres