Saturday, June 11, 2011

What to do with T-shirts

If you're anything like me (not that I assume you are, but hey, we've still got Breakfast at Tiffany's, right?), you've got stuff lying around.  There's a lot of stuff lying around my house, which I will discuss at length at some other juncture.  The stuff that I'm focused on tonight is T-shirts.  Tshirts.  Tee shirts.  However you write it, most everyone wears them, and most people have a lot.  I think.

I know that personally, I have many t-shirts that evoke strong memories.  My favorite team, my hometown, my high school events.  Even ... a number of years out of high school, I have many shirts (not that I can wear them all... or should) that take me back there, to the glory days.  I have shirts from events I've participated in, and even got one from work this week.  And don't even get me started on the outrageous number of fire department shirts Handsome has sitting in his closet.  Really, it ought to be embarrassing.  
Aside: I like Handsome very much.  Just in case anyone is checking.  This house hunting process has been... unpredictable, but I am glad he's my partner in all of this.  He even offered me icecream after some disappointing news.  Because he loves me.  Thats what icecream means.
Aside: If you're concerned about the number of "aside"s in recent posts, I can offer you no promise that it will end soon.  I guess my mind is sort of scattered lately, and I like to give you my thoughts in "real time", so that you can know all of me and then decide your opinion.  I'd hate it if you thought I was a focused thinker all the time, and then met me and were disappointed.
Anyhow, about the T-shirts.  My favorite thing to do when the tee shirt monster gets too be too large is to cut him down.  And I do mean cut.

This is my baby rotary cutter.
Baby, as in "smaller than regular sized".
Not to be confused with a rotary cutter for use by babies.
Oh, and about babysitting your children... yeah, we're available! :)
Its gotten to be time for that in my house, although I will admit that this is a staged event.  What I mean is, I fed the monster, just so I could cut it down.  Enough of the word play; I wen to goodwill and got a bunch of t-shirts so I could cut them up.  And I want to cut them up, because I want to make a quilt like this one.  Except this time, we're going with a theme.  My heart is not entirely in this one, because (1) it feels less like reduce-reuse-recyle-ing, (2) the shirts aren't worn-in well, so they won't be as wonderful, and (3) its just not the same, *sigh*.  

BUT, there is a golden lining in this for me; I get my old one back!  I made my first t-s quilt about 2 weeks before I got married.  You know, because there's not a lot else going on two weeks before getting married and moving cross-country.   Handsome has been using that first quilt at his job, and I want it back.  Its got all my favorite old T-shirts, compared with the one I linked to above, which has both his shirts & mine.  And may I just say that his shirts did not go willingly.  He said that if I gave him another blanket, I could have that one back.  Unfortunately, all of the quilts I have currently sitting in my hope chest are either pink or flowered, so they're not appropriate (says he).  With this new quilt I'm going to work on tonight, he can not complain about the color scheme, as he's taking it to his Clemson fire station.

Clemson T-shirts.
A common find in Clemson Thrift stores.
Go figure.
Tonight, I'm going to cut the shirts into squares, because squares are easy.  I don't know if they'll all be the same size, it will depend on the sizes of the shirts and how large I want to make the blanket.  I have a question for you all (and no, its not about cowboys).  Does anyone else have this t-shirt issue and if so, are you interested in making one of these quilts?  All you need is a square (even cut out of cardboard is fine) pattern, a way to cut fabric (scissors are fine), T-shirts, flannel, and a sewing machine.  I picked up my flannel at goodwill as well, in the form of an old duvet cover.  Its plenty large enough and the color doesn't matter; plus, the more worn-in, the better.

If I sense there is enough interest (i.e.- comment or message me), perhaps we can organize some sort of "quilt along".  And don't let the "quilt" word scare you, this project is pretty easy.  Even if there is no interest, I'll still probably post a few pictures, but not anything in-depth.  Just get at me if you wanna.  I feel sort of thug for writing that last sentence, and I understand how ridiculous that is.  I'm going back to my grandma ways now.  I'm comfortable there.

Peace out my homies,


  1. I imagine one day I'll want to do something like that with Kara's baby clothes.

    But sewing scares me, so I'll need an experienced guiding hand. Which means you'll need to be living close to me by the time Kara's grown out of enough of her clothes to make a baby-clothes quilt.

  2. hmmmmm...what a great idea!! As a matter of fact I was just asking my MIL to come over and help me set up her old sewing machine (the thing is in it's own a piece of furniture that it apparently flips up out of, that I've been WAY too scared to attempt myself. The fanciness bottles my mind!!) AND, I also have some much loved old t-shirts from wayyyy back in the day that my husband lovingly informed me he was "embarrassed to be seen with me" in. So in a closet they sit...for now....(dun dun DUNNNNNN!) I am, however, the self-proclaimed "crappy crafter" so following the lead of someone who knows what they're doing would be great :)

  3. @freeisalark

    I have just the thing!! Check this out!

  4. @Ashley
    So you're saying there's a chance?? BTW, I have a sewing machine for sale :) I don't know how I'd get it to you, but I could pretend like its yours. You know, keep it until you come over to use it?

  5. :-( I, too, am (was) a t-shirt sentamentalist. I saved alot ALOT of the kids t-shirts for years, and wanted to make a t-shirt quilt.

    But, I never did, and then I finally ended up donating the t-shirts to local thrift stores, figuring maybe some other little kid could get some use out of them.

    Not that that means we have a shortage of T's now. Ohh noo.
    Maybe if you did the pictures and instructions I would get interested.

    My problem was, t-shirt material isn't exactly cooperative - it rolls up on me - and I wasn't sure how to connect the squares.
    I didn't know about flannel. Is that the backing?

    I've only ever made some squares, but have never actually quilted and don't know how to sew the edges.

  6. i want a t-shirt quilt! unfortunately, i was anti-social (no club t-shirts), no good at math (no pi day or math competition t-shirts), and laughably unathletic (no sports t-shirts), and i have never been a "rah! rah! school spirit!" kind of girl (no high school/college t-shirts), so i'll have to go the goodwill route and actually buy shirts of some sort. maybe i'll do that while i'm here in va and make an lu quilt! teach me, master sensei!!!


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