9 Great Ways To Recycle Old Cotton Shirts

There are many great ways to recycle old cotton shirts that you no longer wear. Whether you are good at sewing or just a little: there is an option for everyone.

9 great ways to recycle old cotton shirts

Old cotton shirts are probably lying around in everyone’s home. So today we’d like to introduce you to 9 ways in which you can recycle them.

They go great with most jeans. However, if you’re brave enough, you can pair them with a skirt too.

After a while, we stop wearing old cotton shirts and replace them with new ones. This is because, for example, the fabric is worn out or the colors are fading.

However, there is good news: we don’t have to throw them in the trash. The material is still useful and can still be worn in creative ways.

If we invest a little creativity and time, we can turn them into interesting accessories. These can be used again at any time.

Are you ready to go

1. Shopping bags made from cotton shirts

9 great ways to recycle old cotton shirts - shopping bags

The time has come for a change at the supermarket checkout. Instead of plastic bags, we can use fabric shopping bags. Plastic is responsible for pollution and has already wreaked havoc on our planet. This eco-friendly option will soon be the norm.

Instead of buying a cloth bag, you can make one  yourself from your old shirt. What do you think of continuing to use the material like this?

It is really easy!

  • Cut off the sleeves of the shirt. Sew the lower part together with the sewing machine. If you like, you can widen the neckline to make it easier to use.
  • You can cut the fabric any way you want. It just depends on your own creativity.

2. Headband

9 great ways to recycle old cotton shirts - hairbands

There are many different types of headbands in stores. They change your look and enable various hairstyles.

It only takes a few minutes to make a beautiful headband yourself. All you need is a little manual skills and an old shirt.

  • Cut up part of the shirt, fold it and make several strips.
  • Then braid or knot the stiffeners.
  • Adjust the size to your head.
  • It’s easy!

3. Pillows made from old cotton shirts

9 great ways to recycle old cotton shirts - pillows

The fabric of our shirts is thin and docile. This makes it a great base to make a pillow out of. The fabric can be worn calmly or the colors faded, it doesn’t matter.

You can just cut them into the shape you like and sew the ends together with a sewing machine.

Then you can put them on your furniture or, for example, in the dog basket.

  • Look for different pillow shapes, find the pattern, and cut it to size.
  • You can fill them with cotton, rags, or any other soft material.

    4. Scarves made from cotton shirts

    9 great ways to recycle old cotton shirts - scarves

    If you want to change your look, you don’t necessarily have to spend a lot of money on a new scarf. With a little effort, you can turn your old shirt into a fantastic accessory yourself.

    Here you can find inspiration and great instructions.

    5. Patchwork rugs made from cotton shirts

    9 great ways to recycle old cotton shirts - carpets

    A homemade rag rug looks great at the foot of the bed or on the doorstep.

    You may have seen this traditional craft run by your grandparents.

    • Cut the shirt into small pieces. Tie them together until the rug is big enough.

    6. Belt made of cotton shirts

    9 great ways to recycle old cotton shirts - belts

    To make this interesting and beautiful belt, the first thing you need to do is cut several strips of fabric from your old shirt.

    You can either use it to keep your pants in place or as a strap for handbags and wallets.

    • Braid the strips into a long ribbon. Then connect the belt with a buckle so you can adjust it.

    7. Aprons made from cotton shirts

    9 great ways to recycle old cotton shirts - aprons

    Tired of your clothes getting dirty while cooking? Then take the old shirts out of your closet and use them to make beautiful and useful aprons.

    • Use the front of the shirt to cut out the shape of the apron. You can then use the rest of the fabric to make bags and ribbons.
    • Decorative prints and buttons look great too. You can add these as you like. This is how you get an individual apron.

    8. Sports top

    9 great ways to recycle old cotton shirts - sports tops

    If you are good at using the sewing machine, it is probably easy for you to turn an old shirt into a comfortable sports top.

    • Draw the pattern on a piece of paper, transfer it to the fabric, and cut it out.
    • Make sure to leave fabric at the seams and sew them together.

    9. Cleaning rags made from cotton shirts

    9 great ways to recycle old cotton shirts - cleaning rags

    This is definitely the easiest way to use it! Turn your old shirt into a cleaning rag. This allows you to recycle it quickly and also saves you money.

    The material is thin and absorbent. This makes it an ideal helper for dusting and cleaning.

    You can use it in the bedroom, bathroom or kitchen, for example.

    • Cut the shirt into triangles and squares. You can sew the corners together if you like. This causes the rag to wear out more slowly.

    Now you know a few ways to extend the life of your discarded cotton shirts. Test your creativity and manual skills, you will love the results!

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