warning: photo-heavy post.
Raise your hand if you have so many tshirts that your dresser drawers won’t shut anymore.
Both of my hands are raised… and my feet are too. Here’s the deal. I was the t-shirt chair of my sorority my junior/senior year, so there was really no way of getting around having millions of t-shirts. I really didn’t want to just throw them away, so I decided to make a t-shirt quilt out of all of my beautiful college memories. I chose 25 t-shirts and created this:
And now I’m gonna do a little tutorial on how you can make one too.
Keep in mind, this isn’t an afternoon project, folks. It takes quite a while (you may have seen my exhaustion tweets from the weekend) but you can most definitely do it.
supplies you need:
-Your old and memorable t-shirts that you want to show off
-Non-woven fusible interfacing (amount depends on how many t-shirts you’re using)
-100% (prewashed) cotton fabric for border and backing (amount depends on how many tshirts you use)
-100% cotton batting (again, amount depends on how many tshirts you use)
-Rotary cutter & board
-Iron & ironing board
-Plenty of sewing pins
step one: cutting
Pick out the t-shirts you want to use and start cutting 14×14″ (or whatever size you want) squares. Make sure you’re getting as much of the screen printing in your square as possible & placed how you want it to look! My rotary board is pretty small (it was a gift), so I free handed this part and used my fabric shears. (another option is to cut a piece of cardboard the size you want your squares to be).
Then, cut your fusible interfacing into squares the same size as your tshirts. Again, at this point I free handed (I was more precise later).
step two: ironing & rotary cutting
Iron your non-woven fusible interfacing to the t-shirt squares you just cut. Make sure to follow the instructions on the packaging. This gives the t-shirt shape and makes it wayyyy easier to sew later.
After the t-shirts and interfacing are one, set up your rotary board and cut all the t-shirt squares the exact same size. Mine ended up being 13×13″ because I had some mess-ups along the way.
step three: design, pin & sew
Set them up like you want them. I chose to do a 5 square by 5 square pattern and arranged the t-shirts according to color and design
Next, start in the top left corner and pin that t-shirt square right side down to the t-shirt square directly to the right (the red “Theta” on top of the yellow ties). Line up raw edges, pin, and sew a 1/4″ seam.
When the first and second squares are sewn together, pin the second t-shirt square to the third, line up raw edges, pin, and sew a 1/4″ seam. Continue this pattern across the top row and repeat on the next four.
Now, you have five rows containing five t-shirt squares each. next, pin the top row face down on top of the second row, line raw edges, pin, and sew a 1/4″ seam. Try to line up seams as much as possible, this will make the entirety of the quilt more uniform (and it shouldn’t be hard since all of the t-shirt squares are the same size).
Once that’s finished, you have the front of your t-shirt quilt completed.
Take a break, you deserve it.