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Thrifty Gifty: Upcycled Wool Sweater Gift Card Holder

December 10, 2020

Contributed by: Denise of Thrifty by Design and Salvation Army Thrift Store Creative Expert 

Christmas is coming! This year, with COVID-19 and keeping our bubble to a minimum while practicing social distancing, we’re all rethinking our festive get-togethers and gift-giving. In our family, since most of us are older, we either give money or gift cards. Gift cards can seem impersonal, so here’s a simple and fun way to add some personalized craftiness to your gift giving. All you need is a thrifted wool item from your local Salvation Army Thrift Store.


– thrifted wool sweater or scarf

– needle and thread (my preference is embroidery needles and thread)

– cookie cutters (optional)

– felt

– scissors

– DIY pattern

Step 1

Drop by your local Salvation Army Thrift Store for a wool sweater or scarf. You can also hunt for cookie cutters – these are awesome to use as patterns for the embellishment of the gift card holder. Wash and felt the wool.

Note: this DIY is perfect if you have scrap wool from previous projects.

Step 2

Create your own gift card holder pattern. I used one of my cards for reference then drew patterns in the shape of a mitten, stocking and then a plain rectangle shape. Cut out your patterns.

Step 3

Trace the pattern onto your felted wool. Trace and cut out the front and back piece. You’ll also need a piece for the hanger.

Step 4

For the embellishment you can stitch a design or add some felt appliqué. This is where cookie cutters come in. I used my Xmas cookie cutters for the tree shape. For felt appliqué, cut out your felt pieces then pin them to the front of your gift card holder.

Step 5

Stitch the pieces to the front of your gift card holder. Or stitch a design directly onto the front of your gift card holder.

Step 6

Once you’ve completed the design for the front of your gift card holder now you can stitch together the front and back. I hand-stitched my gift card holder. Feel free to use your sewing machine if you prefer. I then added the hanger.

Now all you need to do is fill your cutie patootie DIY gift holder with your present. If you plan ahead you can make tons of DIY holders out of your one thrifted wool sweater – talk about upcycling! Have a green and Merry Christmas!