Introduction: Up-Cycle an Old T-shirt Into a Pillow

About: Student. Philly. Industrial design.
You probably think that old t-shirts or any old fabrics, like bed sheets, can either be thrown away or given to the salvation army. However you like to sew here are instructions on using only your main material (and some thread) to make a small pillow out of your old fabric. This is super easy and good for beginner sewers, or anyone who likes to sew.

Step 1: Picking Out Your Fabric.

Any old fabric will work fine, here I am going to use an old t-shirt. One thing to remember is that whatever amount of fabric you start with will determine how large your final pillow will be.

I had this old t-shirt in my closet that I never wear and the graphic on the front is way to cute to throw out so it made the perfect candidate for a t-shirt pillow.

Step 2: Figuring Out Pillow Size and Outlining Pillow Shape.

So after deciding whatever fabric you want to use the next step is to figure out how big you want your pillow to be. Since the left over scraps of the t-shirt are going to be used as the stuffing for the pillow its better to make the pillow smaller. If your using a bed sheet or another larger piece of fabric you can then make your pillow larger.

Step 1.
Turn fabric inside out and using a marker or pen that won't bleed through, lightly outline the shape and size you want your pillow to be.
Here I first outlined the size I wanted then went back and made a second slightly larger outline around the first to account fabric lose during sewing.

Step 3: Pin Fabric to Cut Out.

Next step is to just pin both pieces of fabric together before cutting out so that they don't shift and you have a more even cut.

Step 4: Cutout Template.

Once both halves are pinned together you can begin cutting around your pen marks.

Step 5: Begin Sewing.

Now that you have your pillow template cutout you can begin sewing around the edges, but only sew up your template about 90% of the way. You need to leave an opening so that you can carefully turn your fabric right side out again. For this pillow I just used a basic straight along stitch.

*It is okay that you are sewing your pieces together with the graphic inside since later you will flip it right side out, this will hide your seams.

Step 6: 90% Sewed.

Here is a pic of my template sewed up 90% of the way. Its kind of hard to see in the photo but there is a gap in the stitches at the top right corner.

Step 7: Turn Fabric Right Side Out.

Carefully, so you don't rip your stitches, turn your fabric right side out.

Step 8: Shred Remaining Material for Pillow Stuffing.

Now take the rest of the fabric that you started with and just cut it into little pieces. This will be used for the inside of the pillow, what is great about this step is that there is no waste in the process.

Step 9: Stuff Pillow.

Once all of the left over material is shred now you can begin stuffing the hollow pillow with it. Its best to put large scoops in and then push them around inside the pillow to make sure that all of your corners are filled in.

Step 10: Sewing Up the Rest of the 10%.

Once all of your shred material is stuffed into the pillow it is time to sew up the remaining gap. I folded the fabric edged in and then pinned them shut. Now you can sew around the pins.

Step 11: Enjoy!

Once the stitches are finished your fully ready to enjoy your new up-cycled pillow.
Hope you enjoyed this tutorial :D
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