Socks without mates are inevitable. Sometimes one of them will turn up after having been inside the sleeve of a sweatshirt not worn in a while. Another lost sock may make an appearance during spring cleaning, but for the most part the pile of unmatched socks grows every month. In the hopes of finding mates to all of your unmatched socks, you not only keep the sock pile, but you also add to it. At some point, enough is enough and you're going to have to let them go.
Creative craft projects can make use of all kinds of odd and leftover materials. Rather than tossing all of your unmatched socks, you can give them new life, by recycling them into a craft or toy accessory or by reusing them in household tasks. Save a wide assortment of unmatched socks of various colors and sizes to use for your different craft or home projects.
Make hand puppets out of socks with your children to recycle unmated socks. Hot glue felt pieces to the sock to make a face. Felt pieces for nose or mouth and buttons for eyes can be sewn on to the puppets as an alternative to the hot glue.
Use unmatched socks as dusting cloths. If children are helping, their hands can fit into the smaller socks and they will love this fun twist on the chore of dusting at home.
Partially fill unmatched socks with herbs such as dried lavender, dried lemon peel, cloves, cinnamon sticks or dried rose petals and use as drawer or laundry sachets. If using the sachet in a drawer, securing the sock opening with a ribbon will suffice, but if the sachet will be used in the clothes dryer, make sure to sew the sock opening closed before use so dried herbs don't end up all over the clean laundry.
Keep several mismatched socks in your car's emergency kit to use as mittens.
Sew eight stuffed socks to a small fabric ball to make a "Socktopus" (sock-octopus) for a child.
Use unmatched socks as erasers on white boards or chalk boards.
Put unmatched socks to use when packing small decorative items or figurines to help protect them during storage.
Use unmatched socks as bags to store small toys such as marbles, small plastic animals or special rocks. Sew (or tack) an eight-inch long ribbon on one side of the sock about an inch and a half from the top, making a built-in tie so it's easy to secure the contents in the sock.
Make catnip cat toys by partially filling with catnip and securing tightly with string or sew the opening closed. Consider doubling up socks for the cat toys so they last a little longer against sharp claws.
Save unmatched socks for your child's spring and summer camp sessions. Clothes and gear can come back really dirty after a fun-filled week at camp. Pack the unmatched socks for those outings and save the clean socks for regular wear at home.