Turn your old t-shirts into skins that cover your messenger bags.
People love t-shirts but they can only wear a shirt once a week. This tutorial teaches you how to take an old t-shirt and turn it into a interchangeable skin that you can attach to your messenger bag. When you get tired of the design on your bag, just make a new skin and attach it to your bag. You can make your own skins from old shirts, decorate blank cloth, or trade with friends.
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First, your t-shirt. The design on your t-shirt should be roughly the size of an 8 1/2" X 11" piece of paper. Any bigger and you crop the image. Wash and dry the t-shirt without fabric softener to make sure it is clean and will not shrink with subsequent washing. Be sure the shirt is a large or bigger. You can use smaller sizes but the arm seams will show in your final design.
Layout a square that is 11" X 17" on your shirt and cut around the square. Lay the shirt on top of your interfacing and iron the interfacing to the back of your shirt. Follow MFG recommendations and use a pressing cloth to avoid sticking to the design.
You can use any one sided interfacing that you may have already. The purpose of this step is to give the shirt some strength and keep it from stretching.
Your shirt should now be bound to the interfacing and have a bit more strength than just the t-shirt.
Draw a rectangle 14 3/4" by 9" inches on top of your shirt centered around the design that you want to keep. We use a plastic template, but you can use a blank piece of paper that is the right shape.
After you have drawn the edges, cut along the lines.
This is the quick method. You can add bias tape or ribbon to give it a finished look. We use a serger and add a canvas backing.
Now add the 1/4" grommets to the corners. Place the center of the grommet hole about 3/4" inch from each edge. There should be about a 1/4" between the edge of the grommet and the edge of your cut shirt.
It is important to use 1/4" grommets. Too big and the buttons may fall through the hole. Too small, and the shank on a shank button will not settle in the hole.
If you want to keep this simple, just make a small hole in the cloth that is smaller than 1/4". The hole just needs to be big enough for two pieces of thin elastic.