Friday, November 25, 2011

PREPARING T-SHIRTS FOR A QUILT

T-shirt quilts are a great memory quilt and everyone seems to love them.  I enjoy scrapbooking and a t-shirt quilt is like a scrapbook on a quilt.  You can reminisce about the things you did or the places you've been just by looking at the quilt. 

I start by splitting the t-shirt down each side and under the arm to the sleeve.  That way I have a single thickness of shirt to work with and it will lay out flat. 


I usually make my blocks 12" square and therefore use a 12" square up ruler.  You can make your blocks any size you want but 12" finished seems to be fairly standard.  Sometimes I have shirts that won't fit in a 12" area and then I have to adjust accordingly.  I place the 12" ruler over the design on the front or back of the shirt and roughly center it like I want it.  I try not to use the ribbing of the neck in the block if I don't have to. 

Then I roughly cut the block adding about an inch of margin around the ruler. 

Next I apply a tricot iron-on interfacing to the back side of the t-shirt.  I cut the square of tricot interfacing about 14".  I have found that tricot iron-on interfacing works best as it stays stuck down and doesn't add stiffness or bulk to the shirts. 

Now you're ready to cut the block out.  This time centering it exactly how you would like it.
You will cut as many of these blocks as you need for the size of quilt you want.

You can make a t-shirt quilt with only a few t-shirts and add extra pieced blocks to make it larger.  Or if you have lots and lots of shirts, you can just do t-shirts and no sashing.  Typically I add sashing around each block of t-shirt and then borders.  The options are only limited by your creativity!  Start saving your shirts and get busy!  You still have time to get this done before Christmas!  And you really have time to do this for graduation.
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