Monday, September 19, 2011

Oh the things you can think...

♫♪♫ ♪ when you think about.... T-shirts? ♪♫♪♪ ♫♪♫ ♪♫♫♪

(OK, you might recognize that from the Suessical musical, the tune of which I can't get out of my head thanks to Grace replaying her dance recital DVD over and over.)

I LOVE repurposing things. A couple years ago I made Micah a quilt with old jeans (mostly donated to the cause). You can check out the result here. There is just something that appeals to me about taking something meant for the trash and turning it into something new. I find myself looking at the items at home, at rummage sales, and everywhere, with an eye toward what it could be with some time and elbow grease.

My latest passion is t-shirts. Who doesn't have a drawer full of t-shirts? And who ever wears them all? If you are like everyone else I know, you wear the top 4 or 5, wash them and then put them away on the top of the drawer so they are the easiest to grab again. You probably have T-shirts you thought you gave away years ago, pining away in the back of a dark drawer.

One of my brothers-in-law (or sister-in-law's husband, to be more accurate) donated some of his t-shirts to a fundraising sale for their adoption, and some of them were shirts commemorating things that we knew were important to him. My husband and I talked to his wife and nabbed all the Tshirts to make a quilt. And then she hit up some of their friends to get other T-shirts from them, duplicates of shirts he currently wears and would miss. I also begged my friends on facebook for a Vikings shirt I could cut up, because he would SO notice if one of those went missing!

It was way more work than I anticipated, I should have cut right across the bottom of the t-shirts to make loops for tarn, but I didn't know about tarn yet, lots of cutting, more cutting the logos to size, cutting the fusing, ironing on the fusing... finally assembly and quilting. No batting, just t-shirts, fusing & a layer of navy fleece on the back. I quilted simple frames around each t-shirt logo. I'm very please with how it turned out! Total cost was only for 2 yards of fleece and a bunch of fusible backing.
It's bigger than I anticipated, too. It's almost 5 X 6 feet. I hope it's a good snuggler! When it turned into such a big project I suggested my s-i-l plan on giving it for Christmas because I couldn't do this for every in-law. She came and got it the next day, and b-i-l got it for an early birthday present because s-i-l said she couldn't wait. My only request was that she take pictures so I could see how he likes it.


 He looks like he likes it!  : )

What do you do with all the scraps? How about:
(I made at least one of the above items, but can't post it because it's a gift...)

Or make 'Tarn' (T-shirt yarn) and make:
Tarn tutorial (this is what I wish I'd known! I would have cut all those T-shirts differently. You live, you learn.)
(I picked up a $.50 tie-dyed t-shirt at a rummage sale and made a t-shirt necklace. 
I must take a picture to post!!)

And FYI - I tried to make these lists all pretty and multicolored and Blogger is so awesome that it will only let me change those three links, nothing else, and now won't let me change them back so they'd all match either. It's the thought that counts! 
Oh look, it'll let me change this, though!

OK, what do you repurpose?
And do you have any colorful T-shirts you want to pull out of your rag bin 
-- to give to me???

1 comment:

  1. When my brother passed away, we collected his special t-shirts (tee-ball, high school, church, TV shows...) and had them made into a memories quilt. It stays in his room on the guest bed and is such a special keepsake! Here's a pic: