How to Make Felt Flower Pins From Old Sweaters

Did you know old knitted Irish sweaters can be very useful? You could make a pet bed out of it, turn it into a shopping bag, make fingerless gloves, legwarmers, hot water bottle cover, pillow covers, name it. More important, the old sweater can be felted into flower pins.

The felt flower pins are used to bring life to the dull and otherwise boring clothing or household items. For instance, the felt flower may be pinned to a coat, hat, scarf or even a pillow. It may also be used on home items like lamp shade, where the felt flowers are arranged in a row around the lamp.

There are many advantages to using felt flower pins. They are cheaper, thicker, more colorful, cleaner and healthier.


Requirements: wool sweaters, needle, pins, pin back, strong thread, scissors, pencil, lined note book paper and four round objects (1-5/8 inches, 1-5/16 inches, 15/6 inches & 11/16 inches).

Step 1: pattern making.

Since patterns will be made with each of the four cylindrical objects, repeat every step with one object at a time.

The note book paper is placed on the table with the lines perpendicularly away from oneself. Then put the object at the edge closest to your chest in such a way that it is positioned at the center of a line and trace around the object using a pencil. This is the first circle.

Placing the object at the top edge of the first circle, trace around a second circle. At the center of where the two circles meet, mark with a dot.

Thereafter, place the round object to the right of the two circles such that the left edge of the object touches the dot at the center of the two circles, and trace out the ball. The same process is repeated now to the left of the initial two balls, and the ball also traced out.

In the end, it should look something like a flower with four petals. Then using a pair of scissors, carefully cut out the flower pattern. So as not to accidentally cut into the pattern, cut outside the traced lines.

Step 2: felting the wool.

Woolen sweaters give the best results. When the sweater is washed in hot water and then dried in a dryer (medium to high heat), the knit fiber turns into felt. The sweater shrinks and the wool fiber entangled and locked together.

Sweaters that are not 100% woolen can work but the felt yield will be lower.

Step 3: Flower pin making.

Patterns are pinned to felted wool. For a good color blend, use one wool color on the largest and second smallest pattern and another color on the other two patterns. After that is done, stack the flowers in descending order.

Then holding the stack tightly, push a threaded needle through the center of all flowers from the backside of the largest flower, and tighten the thread. Make several stitches through the center of the flowers and knot the thread. Finally, the pin is sewed to the back of the flower.

That said, it’s important to take some precaution. Felts generate more fiber dust than most fabrics. So when dealing with the felted wool, it may affect the respiratory system resulting in irritation which may be manifested in coughing, sneezing or other allergic reactions. If you have a very sensitive body, you can use a doctor’s mask to keep safe.

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