More DIY T-Shirt Stuff

I started recycling t-shirts more than 20 years ago.  They are one of my favorite things to work with.  T-shirts are such a part of pop culture, I can't help but find them compelling.  Pictured below is a skirt I made this past Friday.  

Skirt2

I've made this skirt forever, but last year one of my favorite T-shirt artists and designers, Natalie Chanin came out with a great book titled "Alabama Stitch Book."  You can purchase the book at her website–AlabamaStitch_Jacket425

Definitely have a look, Natalie has been doing great things with T-shirts for years.  (she actually makes clothing that is simply amazing, I'm sure some of you have seen her work)   She shows you how to make a 4 panel skirt, the one I made Friday is 6 panels, I wanted a little more swing, and I added a second piece to my panel for substance and length.  I also bleached down old t-shirts to get that faded tie-dye feeling.  Here are some detail shots….

Skirt3

Shelly
Shelly inspired my color palette. 

Skirt

I made t-shirt rosettes for a little polish, and did beading between the gathers.  I should do more beading, but I need to brush up on my beading skills, I haven't done this in a while.  It's really simple to make–honest.  Natalie sews all of her things by hand like I did with this skirt and you can see the genius in this on how the skirt will give with your body, and they are extra durable.  I use buttonhole twist, and double it.  These skirts are so durable, I own several, and throw them in the washer and dryer.  If they develop a worn spot, just hand sew a little patch!
 
I also made this jacket on my machine a while back.  

Jacket2

Jacket4
I made the pattern myself by cutting up an old jean jacket I purchased at Target and tracing it on to newspaper.  I cut each piece 3 layers thick and then quilted each one heavily before putting them together.  
Detail

This makes the fabric very thick and heavy.  Almost like a denim, but still soft like a t-shirt.   It feels really nice.  I made it dip down a little more in the back, and left a little of the t-shirt graffiti for interest.Jacket
I made the lining a contrasting orange for more detail.  The looping was very easy to do.
Jacketlining4
Both of these projects can be done in a busy weekend.  If you have any questions feel free to e-mail me.  If the idea of recycling t-shirts appeals to you, you will definitely love Natalie's book….

Related posts:

  1. DIY T-Shirt
  2. Various Things
  3. Favorite Jeans/Hysteric Glamour
  4. Recycling 101
  5. The Right Boot/ The Right Jean

More inspiration from Atlantis Home:

48 Responses
  • Karuna February 16, 2009 at 2:46 PM

    i hate throwing away stuff, this project is for me!

    Reply

  • helen February 16, 2009 at 3:04 PM

    wow! the jacket is amazing!

    Reply

  • Emma February 16, 2009 at 3:08 PM

    I LOVE the jacket!!! Why haven’t Jane worn it yet? Can really imagine her in it….

    Reply

  • cindy February 16, 2009 at 3:08 PM

    i love the jacket. i admire your patience. all the quilting is so beautiful.

    Reply

  • Design Nomad February 16, 2009 at 3:36 PM

    That jacket is a work of art, just beautiful!

    Reply

  • Lynn Page February 16, 2009 at 4:14 PM

    Both the skirt and the jacket look wonderful. If I saw someone wearing them I probably wouldn’t have even noticed they were made out of t shirts!

    Reply

  • Hilary February 16, 2009 at 4:28 PM

    I utterly adore these. I have quite a large stash of t-shirts that I want to make into things and I love this shirt and jacket.
    I think you would like parts of threadbanger.com and I’ve just moved the Alabama Stitch Book higher up on my list of things to read/buy! :)

    Reply

  • arline Jernigan February 16, 2009 at 5:02 PM

    LOVE

    Reply

  • DUSKIN February 16, 2009 at 5:42 PM

    Judy- This is brilliant. I am so impressed. I think I need to get back to real crafting. It’s so much for satisfying.

    Reply

  • chauss February 16, 2009 at 6:30 PM

    j, that jacket turned out great!!! :)

    Reply

  • Jill February 16, 2009 at 6:32 PM

    Will you be selling items like this online? They really are great. I’m not crafty at all, but I’m very good with opening the wallet!

    Reply

  • christinad February 16, 2009 at 6:48 PM

    wondering if you have ever made a t-shirt into a tank top (specifically a racerback) if so any suggestions?

    Reply

  • reddoorread February 16, 2009 at 7:26 PM

    fantastic job… the jacket is very cool. inspired.

    Reply

  • imelda February 16, 2009 at 8:13 PM

    a very nice work of art..that jacket and skirt of yours. wish i could sew!
    xx imelda

    Reply

  • Eper February 16, 2009 at 8:16 PM

    Great details on the skirt and jacket!

    Reply

  • SAM February 16, 2009 at 8:54 PM

    you guys are so very beautiful and stylish.
    i just started blogging, i would like to add your blog as one of my links. visit my blog.
    http://momfashionworld.blogspot.com/

    Reply

  • Brigadeiro February 16, 2009 at 9:38 PM

    Oh my! I’m totally in love with that jacket! It is positively gorgeous!!!
    I love customising vintage tees, but haven’t done so in a while, but this is definitely a whole different level…

    Reply

  • Elyssa Jo February 16, 2009 at 9:44 PM

    ooo i love that skirt! i recycle tshirts too, i sell some of the stuff on my etsy. i love the little beads on the rosettes. so cute!

    Reply

  • Lor February 16, 2009 at 10:13 PM

    Very lovely and beautiful clothes! You are so talented!

    Reply

  • irene February 17, 2009 at 2:03 AM

    is the skirt entirely done manually?

    Reply

  • Coco February 17, 2009 at 2:42 AM

    I wish I was as creative as you. I can sew, but unfortunately, I lack the creativity. :(
    Anyway, I love your designs. Very unique. :)
    http://pinkcoconut.izces.com

    Reply

  • kayla February 17, 2009 at 4:17 AM

    I LOVE that jacket…I would have never thought to layer t-shirts to make a heavy yet soft material.

    Reply

  • Elly February 17, 2009 at 5:06 AM

    That jacket looks so soft, I want to touch it. After seeing all that, I suddenly miss my mum. She loves crocheting and sewing. I can totally see the two of you making things for the daughters, sipping tea. ^_~

    Reply

  • Lauren February 17, 2009 at 5:49 AM

    That skirt is so pretty!! Just found your blog through your daughter’s blog… will definitely add it to my bookmarks.

    Reply

  • cece February 17, 2009 at 7:56 AM

    Wow! Fab job! We work with the Alabama Stitch Book alot at our shop Revolution Malibu. Natalie Chanin actually featured our work on her blog in November.
    Here is the link if you are interested;
    http://projectecoart.blogspot.com/2008/11/million-thanks.html

    Reply

  • jyc February 17, 2009 at 1:41 PM

    i’ve been such a huge fan of natalie chanin and loved the works of project alabama. your jacket is beautiful! i hope it’s as easy as you say it is. i’ll have to email you for your help on the looping detail once i get around to starting this project.

    Reply

  • Sabina February 17, 2009 at 1:58 PM

    Really like the flowers detail on the skirt and the contrasting orange lining!
    Great job

    Reply

  • mr. freddy's mom February 17, 2009 at 9:26 PM

    i’ve linked you to my blog.
    visit my site…
    http://momfashionworld.blogspot.com/

    Reply

  • sheryl February 17, 2009 at 11:24 PM

    you are amazing!

    Reply

  • lis February 18, 2009 at 10:12 AM

    luv the quilting and yoyos Judy!

    Reply

  • Milly February 18, 2009 at 11:48 AM

    both are great!!.very pretty

    Reply

  • Megone February 18, 2009 at 1:01 PM

    beautiful work! i love the color scheme of the jacket…super creative. Your clothes remind me of a store in Chicago, Art Effect. If you are ever in town, you should pay them a visit. Also kind of like Cotelac, one of my faves. Great blog! I have linked you on my blog!
    http://www.megone.typepad.com

    Reply

  • Lauren February 18, 2009 at 8:01 PM

    These are some amazing pieces, you are so creative : )

    Reply

  • lovefromitaly! February 20, 2009 at 10:55 AM

    those flowers are so cute!
    do you think you can put up a tutorial on how to sew them?

    Reply

  • Never Said It Would February 20, 2009 at 11:20 PM

    That is so wow! I went through a period of cutting T-shirts up the middle when they shrunk and layering them over tanks but NOW I know what to do with my stash

    Reply

  • Allegra Pelletier February 22, 2009 at 1:58 PM

    Hey, I am a 15 year old girl and my Aunt recommended me to your blog. I absolutely love that skirt! It is so pretty. I always enjoy DIY projects and I would love to know how you made that skirt. Did you just use a zipper to to fasten it?

    Reply

  • Sarah*ImOverIt* March 19, 2009 at 4:38 AM

    Aghhhhh….brilliant!

    Reply

  • tasha April 16, 2009 at 6:33 PM

    this is amazing, you are so creative! what an ingenious idea to recycle tshirts. I am now officially a fan of your blog. You are one cool mom!

    Reply

  • Dean May 02, 2009 at 7:25 PM

    Create custom T-Shirts with our T-Shirt maker at http://www.gaffneysportinggoods.com

    Reply

  • Leslie September 07, 2009 at 3:22 PM

    Can I buy them? Please???

    Reply

  • Becky September 28, 2009 at 11:39 PM

    oh my gosh, I knew I had seen these rosettes somewhere before!
    my grandmother just gave me this amazing, 50 year old quilt: http://justtheticket.typepad.com/justtheticket/2009/09/in-the-meantime-you-could-paint-your-houses-brown-and-orange-and-discover-the-avocado.html, and I was wracking my brain trying to remember where I’d seen similar rosettes on a blog. haha. finally!
    anyway, that is a gorgeous skirt, you’re very talented. :)

    Reply

  • wholesale clothing October 20, 2009 at 1:56 AM

    What a cute hand made skirt! very fabulous.
    -mikee-

    Reply

  • Process Management Training,Australia January 21, 2010 at 8:38 PM

    Lovely designs….That skirt is so pretty!!!!

    Reply

  • teresa February 10, 2010 at 6:54 PM

    I am Inspired. I like how you incorporated the logos in your project. I have a garage full of t-shirts…all with a little special meaning to them and this is a great way to put them to use. Did you use a regular sewing foot and did you need a heavy duty machine?

    Reply

  • wholesale clothing March 02, 2010 at 12:19 AM

    Good one. I think this items will work just fine.
    -mikee

    Reply

  • lacoste shoes 2010 July 14, 2010 at 5:24 PM

    Experience never misleads; what you are missed by is only your judgement, and this misleads you by anticipating results from experience of a kind that is not produced by your experements. Do you think so?

    Reply

  • wholesale clothing August 25, 2010 at 6:29 PM

    I like the handmade skirt. it looks so feminine and cute. maybe I should made one for me also.
    -mikee

    Reply

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