Handmade / recycling / Sewing / Sustainability / Vintage

T-shirt to cushion transformation

I popped down to Christchurch the weekend before Christmas to visit my oldest friend who had a significant birthday on Christmas Day. We have been friends since we were 11 when we became penpals, she lived in Invercargill and I lived in Napier. We met in person for the first time at the Bon Jovi concert at Western Springs in Auckland on November 18 1989 when we were both 16.

She had an idea to reuse some band t-shirts that no longer fit her by turning them into cushion covers. As she doesn’t sew, she enlisted my help to execute her plan. I brought the shirts back to Wellington with me and had a rummage round in my stash and found some black fabric and a couple of zips I could use to make the covers. She also brought a Bon Jovi patch and I salvaged a label from the side of one of the t-shirts.

I also brought home an existing cushion cover for the size so I turned that inside out, measured it and made a paper pattern to cut out the fabric to the correct size.  I put the zips in first then cut out the motifs from the t-shirts and used a rotary cutter and a quilting ruler to square them up then pinned to the cushion and used my walking foot to sew them on.

Once I had all of the motifs sewn on, I sewed up the sides, including the label from one of the original t-shirts on the Bon Jovi cushion and another label I had on the Exponents cushion.  I am pretty pleased with how they turned out and hopefully my friend is happy with them.  

The leftover bits of the t-shirts went into Hubby’s rag bag so nothing was wasted.  Great idea to reuse the old tshirts, hopefully this inspires you to recycle some old shirts kicking round in your drawers!

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