What Can You Do With Old T-Shirts?

Old T-shirts still in good condition can be repurposed to make shopping bags, decorative rugs, quilts and pillows, while worn T-shirts can be used as cleaning rags or donated to charity. Additionally, some people sell vintage T-shirts for hundreds of dollars on online auction sites.

Reusable shopping bags are created from old T-shirts by sewing the bottom of the T-shirt closed. Then the sleeves are cut off and the neck area widened to create handles. The T-shirts need to be constructed from a sturdy material so they don’t rip.

There are two ways to make a rug from old T-shirts. Designs, logos or plain color squares from old T-shirts are sewn together to make the rug's design, or the shirts are cut up into strips. The design or strips are then attached to some type of backing. To make a pillow, a T-shirt can be wrapped around a plain pillow and then the holes sewn or glued shut. Alternatively, the T-shirt can be filled with foam or another material. Quilts are made using squares similar to the those used to make rugs, so the T-shirt squares are sewn around the batting inside the quilt.

T-shirts that are too worn to wear make great cleaning rags. If they are donated, charities such as Goodwill often send them to the needy in developing countries. Auction sites such as eBay allow sellers to unload vintage concert, video game and other brand name T-shirts, sometimes for a significant profit.