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Cost
$ $ $ $ $
Difficulty
• • • • •
Time
3h00

"Tie" this NO SEW project on for size!
So, a friend of my parents (quite literally) threw a bag of his old T-shirts at me and said, "Do something with these, would you!?"
So, I did.
I made a throw, or maybe a curtain. You decide. LOL!

I didn't take many pictures in the beginning, so I hope the written steps are enough.

I listed it as so-so difficulty because the cutting can be tricky. Nothing too difficult, but you need to pay attention.

It's going to take at least 2 hours, or more if you're easily distracted, like I am. Measuring and cutting takes a lot of time - less if you use a clear acrylic ruler, rotary cutter and ruled cutting mat rather than scissors and measuring tape. Tying goes pretty quickly, but you need to pay attention or you'll mis-tie.

Most of my T-shirt work (far more than what I have on this site as of now) has been inspired by Megan Nicolay's "Generation T: 108 ways to transform a T-shirt".
Seriously, it's the best book I ever purchased.
This specific project isn't in there, but so many awesome ones are! The book also has great ideas for all the scraps that are going to be left over after you're through with this "quilt".
Also, her website, though it doesn't seem to be updated very often, is www.generation-t.com

Posted by Frustrated Crafter from United States • Published See Frustrated Crafter's 10 projects »
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  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 1
    Step 1

    NOTE: ALL PHOTOS ARE IN MIRROR - I'M USING MY COMPUTER'S WEBCAM AND DON'T KNOW HOW TO FLIP THE PICTURES AROUND.

    Find 8 large or extra large T-shirts.
    Cut out two 16 inch squares from each shirt - one from the front, one from the back.

    If there's a graphic on the shirt, try to center it as best you can.

    I use a clear acrylic ruler for measurements on this step - it's much easier to see, plus it holds the fabric flat.

  • Step 2

    To make a 16" square:
    If your graphic can be centered within a 16" square and NOT hit the neckline, measure 8 inches up, down, left and right of the graphic's center point and mark those points with chalk.
    Use a ruler to draw the lines to make up the square. "Cut out and keep" the square.

    If your graphic isn't centered or you don't want it to be, ignore all of that and just measure and cut out two 16" squares from wherever on the shirt you want.
    Again, this is not about perfection.

  • Step 3

    Once you have 2 squares cut from each of the 8 shirts, you will have 16 squares to arrange in a 4x4 'quilt'.

    Decide on a way to arrange them and number them with chalk (or marker on the back) so you don't forget!

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 4
    Step 4

    Now it's time to make some snippets!

    Cut a 2" fringe all around the square, begin by putting the squares (ONE AT A TIME!!) on your cutting mat.

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 5
    Step 5

    Fold it in half.

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 6
    Step 6

    This is where it is really helpful to have a ruled cutting mat and a rotary cutter.

    Make 2 inch cuts, one inch apart along the long UNFOLDED edge, beginning at the 2 inch mark and ending with the 14 inch mark. This leaves a 2 inch block at the corner.
    You can see the fringes in the front.

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 7
    Step 7

    At the corner, make a diagonal cut, as shown.

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 8
    Step 8

    On the short ends, begin cutting one inch from the folded edge and continue until the 4 inch mark.

    (Yeah, I know it's the same pic from step 6...)

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 9
    Step 9

    Open it up and cut the large fringe left in the middle of each of the 'short' ends in half.

    Keep your fingers out of the way. I know, do as I say, not as I do.

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 10
    Step 10

    You should now have 12 rectangular fringes on each side, and 2 kind of triangle-shaped fringes on each corner.

    Repeat for the other 15 squares.

    (Just like I'm repeating photos... LOL!)

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 11
    Step 11

    Okay, time to start tying.
    Go one row at a time. I found it was easier to tie together end to end the four squares in a row and then tie the rows together, rather than tie squares together haphazardly.

    DO NOT TIE THE TRIANGULAR CORNER FRINGES!!
    In the picture, you can see the corner fringes at the top and the first knot.
    Tie the fringes using a square knot. (L over R, R over L)
    You must double-knot them, or they'll come undone.
    If the fringes are too short, keep a scissor on hand and open them up, a quarter inch at a time.

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 12
    Step 12

    As you're tying, the squares really shrink down. Pull gently on the knotted seams so they stretch back out a bit.

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 13
    Step 13

    See the difference? Even though you pull gently, you'll still hear the fabric tearing a bit. Don't worry about it.

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 14
    Step 14

    Once four squares are tied end-to-end to form a row, the rows can be tied together.

    This picture shows the first two rows.

    It's kind of cool how they get all puckered, right?
    Stretch them out a bit by gently pulling on the seams as shown in the above two steps.

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 15
    Step 15

    I tied the top two rows and the bottom two rows, now they're getting tied together. Almost done!

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 16
    Step 16

    I said not to tie the corners, so they should look like this...
    There should be 8 triangular corner fringes, two for each square.

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 17
    Step 17

    Now, tie!
    Take one each of the triangular corner fringes that are diagonally opposite each other and tie them. Leave their 'partners' free.

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 18
    Step 18

    Take one each of the triangular corner fringes from the other two diagonally opposite squares and tie them as you did the previous.

    You should have two knots and four corner fringes free.

    Do this on each of the seams where four squares meet.

  • How to make a patchwork quilt. "Quilted" T Shirt Throw - Step 19
    Step 19

    Last step: Hold up and display for the whole world to see! TA DA!!

    ...
    Now I get to throw it (literally) back at him!

    Update: He uses it all the time. It has a place of honor on his living room couch.

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Comments

chelsea.hubert
chelsea.hubert · Watertown, South Dakota

is this a very warm blanket?

Reply
Regina K.
Regina K. · Thisted, Thisted · 5 projects

Such a great idea I'm making one of my own it's a great project to do while chillin' on the couch watching tv.

Reply
Veenessar
Veenessar · Ipswich, Suffolk, United Kingdom · 19 projects

I love this! Really good idea! xxx

Reply
Erica D.
Erica D.

I'm going to try my hand at this. I need some curtains(: I was going to use some old shirts too but you know, I didn't want to sew. every. single. square. But I think juuuuuust to make sure, after I tie them, I'm going to reinforce them with my machine(:

Reply
Lizuh Lette
Lizuh Lette · Amelia Court House, Virginia

i think i just may do this for pillowcases or a blanket what would be cool instead of doing tsirts on both sides is to get some warm fabric and attached it the same on the side but just attached to the sides one whole sheet. that way not may shirts need to eb used too as long as they have backs to them

Reply
Buffy, status: vampire slayer
Buffy, status: vampire slayer · 2 projects

this is so wicked!!!!! im going to try it with pillow cases u think it will work?

Reply
Nastassia B.
Nastassia B. · Sennfeld, Bavaria, Germany · 4 projects

Awesome! Am going to try this. I have lots of old baby and toddler shirts i cant part with maybe ill make them into throw for the beach or picknicks, that way ill always remember! Oh... i can even give it back to my son when he becomes a father. Thanks for posting this!

Reply
Frustrated Crafter
Frustrated Crafter · Upstate, NY, United States · 10 projects

Thanks!

Reply
DIS.AR.RAY
DIS.AR.RAY · Las Vegas, Nevada, United States · 32 projects

WOW... I can't beleive there are only a few comments! This is amazing! Going to good will! [we just donated a bunch of our old stuff, so I no longer have any free tee's. :[ ]

Reply
Frustrated Crafter
Frustrated Crafter · Upstate, NY, United States · 10 projects

Thanks! I think I'll be adding to this and actually giving it back to my parents' friend. After all, all of these shirts are his. lol!

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