Turn a Poncho Into a Beautiful Embroidered Blanket

3 Materials
2 Weeks

In the 60s a friend of my mother gave her this gorgeous Colombian wool poncho. I used to use it, but it was a bit too scratchy on my neck, so I decided to turn it into a super warm, super pretty blanket.

The poncho was just a rectangle of thick wool with a slit halfway through.

Do you also have an unused poncho in your closet? Let's turn it into something that your family will use all winter!

First off, use yarn the color of the poncho and a yarn needle to close up the slit. Just go back and forth between the two sides from the center towards the edge.

I decided to embroider a giant sunflower, my mother's favorite flower. I used a water-soluble fabric marker to draw out the shape. The stem went along the closed slit.

Using the yarn needle and a bulky weight yellow yarn, I sewed around the petals with a stem stitch, then filled in each petal with a technique called "long-short stitch shading." ( You can find more details about the stitches I used on this blog post.)

I used a variegated bulky brown yarn for the center. I first sewed long strands back and forth, then started weaving in the other direction.

Seeing as the space to fill was large, I picked up bits of the blanket beneath every so often to keep the yarn in place.

I filled in the edges between the brown and the yellow with big French knots with the same brown yarn.

Using a bulky green yarn, I sewed over the slit previously closed up, using the satin stitch. Then I used the stem stitch (used before to outline the petals) for the leaf stems and to outline the leaves. Once again, I filled in the leaves with long-short shading.

And there is our gorgeous sunflower-embroidered wool blanket! It is so warm and my mother was so thrilled when I gave it to her.

I love it when I can take something that hasn't been used in ages, and transform it into something beautiful and useful!

Click here to get all the details on how to do all the embroidery!

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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 questions
  • Suzzann
    on Sep 18, 2019

    What is it now???

  • Heje
    on Sep 19, 2019

    Did you need to use a hoop or a frame for the embroidery?

    • I didn't because the wool was too thick to put in any sort of frame or hoop. (unless there is some type made specifically for thicker fabric, but I've never heard of them.) Unfortunately this meant that my embroidery sometimes got a little wonky because it wasn't possible to keep the fabric perfectly taut .

  • Tammie Barber
    Tammie Barber
    on Sep 19, 2019

    Did you stitch all the way through the poncho? What does the back side look like?

    • I did stitch all the way through. Initially I tried to make it so that the back looked like the front, however I found it to be impossible. But there are many blankets and quilts that have a definite front and back, so I figured that it's ok!

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