Repurpose T-Shirts for a DIY Fabric Garland

diy furniture
Image via Dagmar Bleasdale

I have a hard time throwing anything out that I think I could still use for something. It's the frugal part in me, and it's the environmentalist in me – I don't like waste, and I don't want to add to the trash in the landfills if I can help it.

I regularly donate items we don't need anymore to our local community center, but what do you do with old T-shirts with stains or holes?

Instead of throwing out my husband's old work T-shirts, I have been hoarding them to use as cleaning cloths. But the pile was getting bigger and bigger, so when I saw this picture of a fabric garland on Pinterest, I finally knew what I'd be making with those old T-shirts!

Instead of using just cotton T-shirts, I decided to also mix it up a little bit with some left-over fabric I had. 

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All you need are these supplies:

  • old, clean T-shirts
  • optional: fabric
  • scissors
  • string

Fabric Garland Tutorial:

1.     Gather old T-shirts and start by cutting them into strips. I made mine about 12 inches long and ½ to 2/3 inches wide, but you can make them as long or as wide as you like. You could also mix up the length and width, depending on your preferences.

2.     Cut the string as long as you want the garland to be, taking into account that you need some string without fabric strips on both ends so you can make a loop or a bow to attach it to where you want to hang it later.

3.     Now take a strip and put both ends on top of each other. Then take the loop that was created and put it under your string. Take the two ends and pull them through the loop, around the string. Pull the string tight and keep doing this until the garland is as long as you desire. That's all!

It took about 25 of my fabric strips to get 15 inches of garland. Depending on how thin or thick you decide to make the strips, the number of strips will be different for you. If you'd rather not use as many strips, and be able to make the garland faster, just cut them wider.

Some other ideas for making a fabric garland:

  • Have your children decide which color should come next when you are attaching the strips to the string, or have them help you loop and fasten the strips.
  • You could make a point of using only pastel colors to use this garland for Easter decoration. Or what about white, red, and blue for a patriotic look? 
  • You can always add to this garland and make it longer when you have more fabric or T-shirts in the future.

Have fun making this easy garland! Where do you think you will hang yours? 

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Repurpose T-Shirts for a DIY Fabric Garland

Dagmar tackles motherhood, thrifty home decorating, DIY projects, and green and frugal living on her lifestyle blog Dagmar's Home. She loves finding treasures in thrift stores and sells her handmade candles on Dagmar's Home Decor. Connect with her on Twitter (26,000 followers), Facebook, and Pinterest. ... More

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