How to Make a T-Shirt Blanket: Day 2

Welcome back to Day 2 of 4 of my How to Make a T-Shirt Blanket series! Did you miss How to Make a T-Shirt Blanket: Day 1? Don’t worry… I’ll wait while you head over to that tutorial and read through the first step. 🙂

Although today’s tutorial may seem short, this step will most likely require the most time to complete. But it will be well worth it once your panels, sashing strips, and borders are all ready to sew.

Below is how the series is broken out. Click on the ‘Day’ below to check out any of the steps, and come back as often as need.

Day 1:

    • Decide on a design and make a plan
      • Blanket size
      • Uniform vs. irregular shaped blocks
      • Binding or pillow-case style to attach the front to the back
      • Sashing and/or a border
      • Seam allowance
      • Fusible interfacing
      • Plot out your blanket

(Today) Day 2:

    • Prepare the shirts
      • Disassemble your t-shirts
      • Apply the fusible interfacing and cut out the panels

Day 3:

    • Lay out and sew the front of the blanket

Day 4:

    • Sew the front to the back
    • Finish the blanket

And away we go with Day 2!

Prepare the shirts

Disassemble your t-shirts

This is what took me the longest to do. That very first cut in these special shirts was hard for me to make, but after a few encouraging texts from my close friend, away I went. 🙂

I separated the fronts of the shirts from the backs along the side and shoulder seams, also cutting around the sleeve seams and neckband as I went. Every piece of the shirt was saved and stored in plastic storage bags until I needed them, which helped retain her father’s smell throughout the whole process.

Apply the fusible interfacing and cut out the panels

If you’ve chosen to use fusible interfacing, apply it before making any additional cuts following the manufacturer’s instructions.

For the graphic panels, I ironed on a large piece of interfacing to the wrong side of the shirt, and then cut the panel and interfacing together.

As mentioned in a previous step, not only had I planned to use the graphics, I also wanted to use additional fabric from each shirt to supplement the blanket size and use more of the shirts than just the images. Applying a large piece of interfacing allowed me to measure, use a fabric pen to mark, and cut not only the graphic panel according to the plan I had made, but cut the solid colored panel at the same time. Win win!

(Please forgive the poor quality of the image below…!)

However, as you can see below, for my sashing and border strips, I cut the interfacing first, then ironed them onto the fabric. It was easier for me to do it this way.

You can also see in the image above that I labeled the back of the purple border strips with a pencil, identifying the size so when I was ready to use one of these strips (these are the four side border pieces), I knew I had the correct ones.

When I applied the interfacing to each of the black sashing strips, I labeled them as well, A through NN, as labeled in my Excel layout. The image below show all my sashing strips cut out, labeled, and stacked up so I can grab them as I need them. ‘D’ is shown in this picture just as an example.

That’s it for today! Now that you have all your panels and strips cut out, it’s time to lay them out and sew. Head over to Day 3 and lets keep moving!

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