Tutorial: How to Upcyle T-Shirts by Chrissie

Today I’m privileged to share this great tutorial by my friend Chrissie.  She is really creative and loves to try out different things as a hobby, and she has come up with this great way to use t-shirts.  She generally gets childrens t-shirts with great pictures on the front, but this would work with adult ones too.  She makes these great zip up pouches with them!

They would be a great way to use your kids t-shirts once they have grown out of them, a fab way to upcycle and keep happy memories!  They are useful to use as large pencil cases, tablet cases, or all sorts of things!

Here are some of the ones Chrissie has made in the past, they look fab don’t they!

How To Turn T-Shirts into Zipped Lined Bags


You will need the following to make a zipped lined bag
Childs t shirt
Thin wadding
Lining material of your choice
Matching colours of thread
Tape measure or ruler
A4 paper or clear glass/plastic from a frame.
General sewing items
First stage
Using a flat surface
Cut out two pieces from the front and back of the t shirt by drawing round either the paper or frame, moving it if you want to make it longer or wider.
I’ve done it so many times I cut through the front and back at the same time.
Be careful to make sure it measures out as accurately as you can.
Cut out two pieces of wadding the same size.
Measure and cut out the lining in two pieces and save for later.
Mine measures about 12 inches by 9 inches
Pin the wadding to the back of both sides and tack around the edges.
Place pins through the front, about 5 will do just so the fabric and wadding doesn't move. 
Or a few tacking stitches that can be removed afterwards.
Quilt though the front making small running stitches around the outline of the pattern.
It creates interest, gives a 3D effect and helps hold the fabric together. 
You can do as little or as much as you like. 
Avoid stitching through any pattern that has vinyl, rubber or plastic on it as it makes an unsightly hole.


Next, process the back in the same way.
On this one I decided to use a bright pink for the back instead of the white that I had originally cut out.
Instead of usually quilting a straight line I cut out a circle on grease proof paper and randomly quilted multiple circles.
Next sew the zip into the longest length of the bag.

Sew the remaining seams together and it’s finished!

1j I totally love this pouch, and I’m lucky enough to own it as Chrissie very kindly sent it to me as a gift!  She is a great friend!


Do let me know what you think of these pouches, Chrissie and I would love to hear your thoughts and if you decide to make one, do send me some photos!

My next blog post will be about making jewellery from buttons, so do take a look next week!  I have plenty of new pictures for you to see on IG, FB and Twitter as well, so take a look at those if you want to keep in touch in between blog posts!





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