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How to Make a T-Shirt Quilt (No Sewing!)

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By Katy Sommerfield

We’ve all got a stash of t-shirts from over the years. There are the t-shirts from high school athletics, the annual work retreat shirts, and all those band tees you’ve collected since your preteen years. A lot of these t-shirts came at important or memorable life moments – the sentimental value that’s held in the threads makes it too difficult to donate them or throw them away sometimes. If you have a ton of t-shirts but no idea what to do with them, try turning them into a cozy quilt that can last! Here’s what you’ll need:

 
  1. Fabric cutting scissors
  2. Iron on tape
  3. A ruler
  4. Sewing pins
  5. 15-30 shirts
  6. A quilt (any size)
  7. An Iron
  8. Optional fusible interfacing fabric

Fusible interfacing fabric will make the shirts firmer and give your quilt more shape. If you plan on using interfacing fabric, just know you will have to sew your quilt!

Step One – Pick Your Quilt Size

How big do you want your quilt to be? Depending on the desired size, you’ll need a certain number of t-shirts. Around 15 shirts (30 fabric pieces front and back) is a good place to start if you are using the fronts and backs of the tees. This will make a queen to king size quilt.

Step Two – Get a Quilt

You’ll need a quilt to serve as the background for your t-shirt quilt. You can find affordable quilts of all shapes and color patterns at convenience stores and supermarkets.

Step Three – Gather Your Shirts

Sort through all your t-shirts and pick which ones you’d like to use for the quilt. You’ll need to cut 15 inch squares out of each t-shirt, front and back if you want to use both sides.

Step Four – Decide on the Layout

Place all the t-shirt squares on top of the quilt in the layout you want. You can color code the pieces or make it totally random. It’s up to you! Once you have all the pieces in the desired positions, pin each square down to the quilt.

Step Five – Iron-on Tape of Fusible Interfacing 

If using iron-on tape:

Once you have all your t-shirt pieces pinned down in place, you will begin ironing them onto your quilt. Cut your iron-on tape into 6-10 inch strips. Start with your first t-shirt by unpinning the bottom pins. Lay iron-on tape strips on the quilt underneath the bottom and sides of the shirt you’ve unpinned. Then, iron over these three areas carefully and make sure that the tape adheres well to the quilt. Next, unpin the top of the square and repeat the same process by laying tape on the quilt underneath the last side of the square. Iron this side well. Continue taping and ironing in this same fashion on each square piece of t-shirt fabric to complete your quilt.

If using fusible interfacing fabric:

Cut squares of interfacing fabric 15x15 inches each. Lay the adhesive side down on the back of the t-shirt square, leaving the design visible. Iron on the fabric, and then sew each square into the desired layout on the quilt.

And there you have it! It only takes five easy steps to create your one-of-a-kind, easy to make t-shirt quilt. Use this quilt as a unique throw blanket for rainy days on the couch or put it on your bed to snuggle up in at night. These t-shirt quilts can also make great gifts for family and friends, and if you have enough t-shirts you can make one for yourself and a loved one! Take all your favorite old tees and make them into something cozy and useful.

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