Wire hangers are hard on your clothes, they get tangled up in the closet, and they are easily bent out of shape. But covered wire hangers are a completely different story. The padding protects your clothes, the hangers line up neatly on the closet rod, and you can cover two hangers together so they’re much stronger. Do this using t-shirt yarn, and you have lovely eco-friendly hangers made from free/scavenged materials. I’ll show you how I do it.
- two matching wire hangers
- t-shirt yarn cut about 2.5 cm (1″) wide (Instructions for making t-shirt yarn can be found here.)
- sewing pin
- needle and thread
- crochet hook to fit the t-shirt yarn
- twist tie to hold the hangers together (optional)
Understanding the weave
It’s easier to see how the weaving works if you start with two different coloured strips of t-shirt yarn. I prefer the look of solid coloured hanger covers but I’ll show you the technique using contrasting colours so you can see what’s going on.
There are three things to remember when weaving the hanger covering:
- Anything that was over, goes under; anything that was under goes over
- Every pair of strands will have two different colours in it
- The pairs will alternate between being at the sides, and being at the front and back
Getting started – covering the hook
The trickiest part of weaving the hanger covering is getting started. It might take a few tries to get it going, so be prepared for a bit of a muddle at first.
It’s hard to tell, but there’s actually a little pocket formed now. The pin marks the bottom of the pocket. Two blue diamonds form the sides of the pocket, and two green diamonds make the front and back. Slide the tip of the two hanger hooks into the pocket. (The hangers are much easier to handle at this stage if they are held together with a twist tie.)
Covering the shoulders – option 1
Now that you have the weaving working, you could just continue it around the shoulder portion of the hanger. As you need longer pieces of t-shirt yarn, just sew on a new strand. (If you taper the ends that you’re sewing together, they can overlap without leaving a huge bump.) Keep going all the way around the loop and then tie off the ends when you get back to the bottom of the hook.
Covering the shoulders – option 2
I prefer a crocheted cover over the shoulders of the hanger. I find it easier to work, and the ridges it forms make it a little more difficult for garments to slide off the hangers. Originally, I crocheted the entire hanger covering but the extra bulk around the hook can get in the way. Now I prefer a smooth woven hook covering with a crocheted shoulder cover. Here’s how I do that.
Crocheting step by step
To start the crocheting, fold your t-shirt yarn over at least 10 cm (4″) from the end. Hold the short end along with the hangers and the ends from the weaving. Put your crochet hook into the loop that is made by folding the t-shirt yarn. The long tail of t-shirt yarn stays behind the hangers.