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Project

Padded Hangers

Introduction

Padded hangers are excellent for maintaining the shape of delicate garments. Though store-bought versions are readily available, durable ones can be difficult to find, and the choices of fabrics and colors are limited. The hangers pictured here are attractive enough to give as gifts and are quite simple to make. Use good-quality wooden hangers as a base; look for ones with moveable, sturdy hooks.

Materials

  • Cotton-poly batting or thin foam rubber
  • Scissors
  • Wooden hangers
  • Soft tape measure
  • Awl (optional)
  • Staple gun
  • Staples
  • Pins
  • Needle and thread
  • Pencil
  • Thin cardboard or paper (for template)
  • Round object (for tracing curve on template)
  • Fabric (1 yard of 45-inch fabric will make approximately 8 hangers)
  • Sewing machine
  • Pinking shears
  • 5/8-inch ribbon (3/4 yard for each hanger)
  • Small buttons with shank (optional)

Steps

  1. Step 1

    Cut batting into 3 1/2-inch-wide strips. Fold each strip in half, then in half again, to achieve a four-layer thickness. For each hanger, measure a strip of folded batting that's twice the length of the hanger.

  2. Step 2

    Find the center of the folded batting; using an awl or the point of a pair of scissors, make a small hole at this point through all the layers of batting. Insert the hanger hook through the hole. Pull batting across the length of the hanger's top, then wrap it around the bottom. Secure the ends of the batting with a staple at the hanger's bottom center. Trim any excess so that the ends of the batting meet neatly. Fold the batting, top over bottom, along the sides of the hanger. Use pins to hold batting in place. Hand-baste all the way around the hanger with large stitches; tuck end corners under as if you were wrapping a package.

  3. Step 3

    Make a template for the fabric sleeves that will cover the batting: Using a soft tape measure, measure the circumference of the hanger (with the batting in place); this will be the finished width of each tube. (Note: Do not pull tape measure tightly, or you will end up with tubes that are too tight for your hanger.) Divide this measurement in half, and add 1 inch for seam allowance. Then measure the hanger from end to center, adding 1 inch for seam allowance. Using these measurements, draw a pattern on a piece of thin cardboard or paper. Draw a curve at one end of the rectangle, using a round object as a guide, if necessary. Trace the template onto fabric, and cut it out. You will need to cut four pieces of fabric for each hanger.

  4. Step 4

    Pin together two fabric pieces, right sides together. Stitch three sides using a 1/2-inch seam allowance and leaving the short, flat end open. Using pinking shears, trim the seam allowance. Turn the sleeve right side out. Repeat this step for remaining sleeves.

  5. Step 5

    Pull a sleeve onto each side of the hanger, taking care not to tear the batting. Align the seams along the sides of the hanger. At the center of the hanger, fold the raw edges of the fabric under so that the sides just meet (the fit should be taut). Hand-stitch the sleeves together all the way around, matching up the seams.

  6. Step 6

    Place a length of 5/8-inch ribbon around the hook to the front of the hanger, slightly overlapping, as if you were dressing it with a scarf. Pull both ends of the ribbon under the hanger, and back over the front on either side of the hook, and tie into a bow in front of hook.

  7. Step 7

    If desired, sew a small button with a shank near each end of the hanger; this will keep delicate garments with straps from slipping.

Source
Martha Stewart Living Television

Reviews (28)

  • kann3140 28 Aug, 2008

    I have bought good wooden hangers from Target, Wal,art and K-mart.

  • AzBammy 27 May, 2008

    I can't find the wooden hangers to make these. Any ideas where you can buy them or order them

  • tigersmoke 20 May, 2008

    I've made these before

  • jkuzmick 16 May, 2008

    Answer to badkitty: To change the fabric of hangers you already have, remove the ribbon that is tied around the hook. Carefully cut the basting thread that holds the two sides together. Gently pull the fabric off of the hanger and then follow steps 3-7 as described above.

  • deannajean 16 May, 2008

    I saw a pattern for adding a small pocket which hangs from the bottom of the hanger to put jewelry or other items in when you are traveling. The clothing item hangs on the hanger and it hides the pocket. Making your valuables hidden.

  • rafka 16 May, 2008

    I add this to my padded hangers (purchased since I'm not crafty) - sew a button on each side about 1.5-2" from the end to hold slips, evening gowns, dresses or blouses that have straps. Keeps them from sliding off and is much prettier than the plastic hangers with the little slots to hold them. Hang a sachet from the hook to keep things smelling nice or keep the moths away. Sew lace into the lower seam and use pretty fabric to hold a wedding gown or other special dress.

  • badkitty 15 May, 2008

    I have a ton of padded hangers from doing craft shows...I hang knitted items on them. How would i change the fabric? or does anyone have and idea to spruce them up for a gift idea?

  • jkuzmick 15 May, 2008

    I've always bought already padded hangers at my local discount store and changed the fabric. (Pssst...That way I don't have to search for hangers or batting. Much easier and quicker).

  • littledeer 15 May, 2008

    I found my wood hangers at Target. Decent quality and OK price. I put my sleeves on by turning them inside-out and poking the finished end back into the fabric tube. Then I insert the hanger into the tube and use it like a tube turner, by carefully sliding the fabric up and letting it turn itself right-side- out again as I cover the hanger. I started doing this when I was using heavier and stiffer fabric. I hope that description made sense.

  • jeancham 15 May, 2008

    Don't know if Anna Marie has such a store where she lives, but I find my wooden hangers at the Bed Bath and Beyond store. Not too spendy either!! and they are the thicker kind, not the narrower ones. I haven't checked but look for their website, and see if they sell them there. Also at IKEA. Wish you fun looking!! Jean

  • wanderingnanaof11 15 May, 2008

    This may be over done per winterbeach but, I have never seen the directions. Thanks for sharing as I have been trying to find some instructions and was going to have to figure it out myself.

  • Anna_Marie 15 May, 2008

    Not a dependable, all-the-time source... but I have seen wooden hangers sold at the thrift stores near my home. Usually near the purses and scarves. I think you could also use the thick plastic hangers from department stores for a base, if you couldn't find wooden ones. Good luck!

  • maria_fernanda 15 May, 2008

    Me parecen preciosos estos ganchos para colgar la ropa, gracias por este articulo, voy a ensayar hacerlos.

  • shirleypark 15 May, 2008

    This looks great -- I'm going to try to use some fabric that is "pre-quilted".

  • ulihelisdi 15 May, 2008

    Wow I'm impressed with the quick response. Thank you jerseypeach and
    glorybees7 for educating me. (smiles)

  • jerseypeach 15 May, 2008

    You use them for shirts mostly. But they are attractive and you can use them for any item of clothing that slips off the hanger. I have tank tops on them and sweaters which seem to be jumping to the floor as soon as I slide the closet door shut. Even dresses sometimes are unruly and need a special hanger or they will throw a hissy fit. My wardrobe seems to have attitude.

  • glorybees7 15 May, 2008

    I would use this kind of hanger for sweaters as it won't leave that "hanger bump". I hate that! Also good for spaghetti strap things - they won't slide off the hanger as easily.

  • jerseypeach 15 May, 2008

    Didit, I checked my nearby Bed bath and Beyond, and my Linens and Things, also my AC Moore We don't have a Home Goods but I did check Joannes and Michaels and Hobby Lobby on-line. When the world discovers us and brings in more retail markets we will be able to find more supplies but for the moment we are sleepy in the the wintertime and crazy during the summer. . I don't mind. I get to live where others only vacation. Thanks for the help.

  • ulihelisdi 15 May, 2008

    I've always seen these but I have no clue what to hang on them. What type of garments do you use them for?

  • jerseypeach 15 May, 2008

    I found one. It was one of the sponsors of this site. They had 250 hangers for 50 dollars. Hope that helps. You can always sell the extra ones to your friends who are looking for them. www.clearancehangers.com

  • ditdit 15 May, 2008

    Jersey Peach- the wooden hangers for the base can be found in AC Moore, Linens and Thins Bed bath and Beyond, Home Goods. any craft shop or home supply store. I am glad to see this project cause no matter what you pay in a store they separate and get flat really soon

  • jerseypeach 15 May, 2008

    I have been trying to make these hangers and have searched the internet for the hangers. I have not been able to find a source for them. Is there anyone who knows of one. I would be appreciate a link. I have been searching every possible way that I can think of and I know they are out there somewhere. HELP anyone?

  • scatteredstitches 15 May, 2008

    I would make several up ahead of time and add personal touches prior to giving as gifts, according to the occasion. I also do machine embroidery, so I can add designs to fit an occasion prior to assembly. Problem is, I cannot find these wooden hangers in adult and/or child size, with the moveable vinyl coated hook, for some time now. I could not find them in Martha's online store. I wish I could find them online to purchase!

  • wduke2 15 May, 2008

    You can update the look of this old idea with the great new fabrics that are so "in" right now such as Amy Butler fabric. Not only are they cute, but they really work for sweaters, flimsy fabric tops and wide neck tops. Great idea.

    Joan

  • bonesnuttly 15 May, 2008

    How cute! Just like my aunties. I remember their closets always look so feminine and beautiful. I am going to make some for my daughter's closet to match her room, I know she will love them as much as I do. What a great gift for a bride-to-be .

  • pelican66 15 May, 2008

    this is the kind of 'martha'craft' i just love.......the finished product is so professional looking. thank you!

  • NoaShaiHanna 15 May, 2008

    Wish they would show some step by step photos about the battering and insertion.

  • shazzacatzz 6 Jan, 2008

    This is great - I always made a single tube, took the hook out, and then struggled to find the [filtered word] for the hook again - this is just so much esier!