New Memories from Childhood T-Shirts

I’ve made a number of t-shirt quilts for young adults to honor high school graduations, when going off to college, or when moms decide to clean out dresser drawers. I find t-shirt quilts to be easy-to-sew.

Recently I got a bag filled with t-shirts from a friend. Her girls are in high school and college now. In the past, the t-shirt quilts I’ve made for them were done after they cleaned their rooms or graduated high school. From this newest bag, I made one quilt for each of the older girls, but the youngest had only four shirts and didn’t want a quilt. Her mother asked if I could make something for her. I pondered as to what a high school student might like.

I decided the smallest shirt could be sewn into a zip bag that she could use for cosmetics. She loved it and is using it as a pencil bag! Her mother says she would really like it, but her daughter isn’t giving it up. I don’t blame her, it is so cute! This was the first time I had ever sewn a zip pouch! It was quick and easy to sew.

I had three more t-shirts to use. I made another pouch using a shirt from a popular lake where the family enjoys vacations and I knew she would cherish those memories each time she used it.

easy to sew zip pouch
easy to sew pouch inside
easy to sew zip pouch lake
easy to sew zip pouch blue

I took longer contemplating what to make with the last two shirts. They were similar and I thought of a tote bag. I wanted to make a boxy bag that would hold a substantial amount. I had some fabric-backed vinyl that I thought would be good for the bottom and it would support the sides. From my fabric shelf, I chose a cotton print for a fun, colorful lining. I actually figured out the steps of sewing this tote bag while trying to fall asleep one night. I was very happy with it when I completed it.

t-shirt Tote front
t-shirt Tote back

I mailed the blue pouch and the tote to her today. I look forward to finding out what she thinks of each of them.

Have you used t-shirts for any projects? Do you have a special cutting technique or way to sew them without stretching them? I have some tips I will share in an upcoming post. Stay tuned! Thank you for visiting.

I’ve joined Meadow Mist’s Favorite Finish Monthly Linkup for November 2020.  See what other projects people have finished this month. CLICK HERE.

Nancy Myers
Nancy Myers


  1. Wow! You’ve made some amazing things from t-shirts Nancy! Stretchy fabric always intimidates me, but you look to be an expert! I’ll be back to read your tips!

  2. Susan,
    Thank you for visiting. I am losing my fear of using t-shirts. I will be posting the tips very soon.

  3. Thank you Cheryl. I try to use all types of fabric scraps, so even t-shirts can become something else.

Comments are closed.

Skip to content