Wednesday, June 16, 2010

How to prepare your t-shirts for a quilt

Thank you so much for all the wonderful comments. I can't tell you enough how much I appreciate all the lovely blog visits. So many of you asked me how I make the t-shirt quilts. I pieced and quilted this memory quilt for Jenny. This is the second one I made for her.

I made a scrappy backing and used the leftover t-shirt and clothing on the back of the quilt.

I am working on a new t-shirt quilt for Rosselle and decided to share a few pictures on how I am preparing the t-shirts to use them in a quilt. I will cut the t-shirts open and cut the blocks .5" bigger than the size I am going to square up the blocks. The size of the blocks all depend on how big the shirts are. These were cut to 14".

I will buy 10 to 15 yards of a soft fusible interfacing.

I like to press the wrong side of the t-shirt blocks with the iron on a wool setting. Next I will press a piece of fusible interfacing on the back of the t-shirt. I cut the interfacing the same size as the t-shirt block ( 14" again). Every interfacing has it own directions on how high to use the iron and for how long to press the facing down.

I will trim all the blocks down, a .5" smaller than the original block. These blocks are now all 13.5".

NOW IT IS TIME TO HAVE can either sew the blocks together in a row in a random style setting or use sashings and corner stones. When I sew my t-shirt blocks together I lengthen the stitch length and use a .5" seam allowance. I press the seams open when I sew t-shirt to t-shirt to reduce bulky seams. When I sew t-shirt to fabric, I press the seams away from the t-shirt blocks.
Please remember, I have never took a t-shirt quilting class or purchased a book or pattern on t-shirt quilts. You might do it different than me. T-shirt quilts are fun to make and not suppose to be stressful!

I always keep a little plastic basket close by for scraps.

I quilted this t-shirt quilt for Sally. This is a random style setting and blocks are different sizes.

"Deb's Swirl" panto is one of my favorite patterns for t-shirt quilts. It is always a good idea to use a pattern for t-shirt quilts without an over stitching pattern. The t-shirts can be very stretchy.

Blue border.

Backing with sports.

Another quilt in a random style of t-shirt blocks quilted for Sheri with a panto called "Fossil".

Close up of some of the band t-shirt blocks.

Batik scrappy backing.

Another t-shirt quilt quilted for Betsy. She used a jelly roll to frame the t-shirt blocks.

The "Bubbles" panto always turn out nicely on t-shirt quilts.

Cross backing fabric.

I hope this will inspire you to make another or even your first t-shirt quilt.

Happy Quilting,


Zlaty said...

I love your T-shirt quilts Millie!

They are so pretty and probably very soft and cuddly! Thank you so much for sharing how you make them!

Have a great day!

Elaine/Muddling Through said...

Well, aren't you clever! That is such a clear tutorial on how to make a t-shirt quilt. And you surely do a great job of making and quilting them!

Talin's Corner said...

Your t-shirt quilts look great. For someone who has not taken a class, you do a wonderful job. I have often thought of making one, but have never gotten around to it.

SandyQuilts said...

Oh could you say specifically which soft stablizer you use? I really want to make one for my GD. thanks

Quilter Kathy said...

OH my goodness...all of them are amazing!
I have to get going on my nephews quilt. I don't know why I am procrastinating so make it look easy!

Myra said...

Well, that is wonderful instructions on making T-shirt quilts there Millie! Thanks for sharing the info! It will indeed come in handy to me some day! 8-)

*karendianne. said...

Gosh friend, I love this! It's amazing to watch these come together. What a great idea to use a jelly roll for sashing. Never thought of that.

I just have to ask, and I don't know why because you're awful humble but --- do you have ANY clue how talented you are? Will you remember me when you're name is up in lights? :) Your friend for a long time. hee!

Micki said...

What a great tutorial and I love your T-shirt quilt.

Nancy said...

Millie, Thanks so much for all your information about how to make T-shirt Quilts.
I am making one for my Husband out of all of his flying T-shirt and this has been very helpful.
Love your work.

maria said...

This is an excellent tutorial for a t-shirts quilt.
I bookmarked it.


donna said...

I loved the T-shirt tutorial, it seems pretty easy, I am definitely going to give it a whirl. Stand by for my SOS.