six months ago (don’t hate because i’m so behind on things) i made a chicago sports themed t-shirt blanket for the baby shower of this handsome little man.
for baby showers, i always like to give something homemade (for a personal touch) along with something from the registry (for a practical touch). as our friend john, the dad, is a huge chicago sports fan, and they were expecting a little boy, the idea for the blanket was sparked when i saw another friend’s t-shirt blanket (theirs was a bit more complicated and larger, this is my simple version).
the blanket is fairly simple, especially since you don’t need to bind it. the hardest part may be collecting enough t-shirts to use! if you don’t have a bunch of extras lying around, like me, the thrift store is a great place to find them (and of course wash before you make the blanket, please). or you could ask friends and family to donate old shirts, so the blanket will be even more special.
(note: the size of the blanket is really up to you and your materials – the number of shirts available and the size of the squares from them, and the width and length of your backing fabric).
step 1. gather t-shirts to be used. the amount of t-shirts needed depends on the size of the blanket (or, the amount of t-shirts gathered decides the size of the blanket! i gathered about 16 shirts, and used 12 for the blanket)
step 2. decide how large you want each t-shirt square to be and make a template for easy measuring. the size of the t-shirts determines the largest size possible (the area below the neck and between the sleeves). i found the smallest t-shirt i wanted to use and made the biggest square possible out of it, to be used for all other t-shirts.
step 3. use the template to cut squares of the t-shirts (i also used a straight edge for extra strength and my rotary cutter).
step 4. arrange your t-shirt squares to find the pattern you like. i laid mine down on my backing fabric (blue, soft minky, one of my favorites) to check how many across and long would fit.
step 5. flip over one square onto the square next to it, so the right sides are together. pin along the inner edge (the edge that joins the squares within the blanket – not a top, bottom or outer edge). sew along the pinned edge (i used a 1/4″ seam allowance).
step 6. open the two squares you just sewed, and repeat step 5 with the next square in the row. do this for all squares in your row (if it’s only 3 like me, the row is done; ignore my upside down squares below).
step 8. flip one row on top of the one below or above it, so the right sides are together. pin along the inner edge and sew, making sure to open the row seams so they lay flat.
step 9. repeat step 8, attaching all rows together. you will end up with one large piece, the front of your blanket.
step 10. lay the back fabric right side up, and the t-shirt front right side down on top. pin all around and sew (again i used a 1/4″ seam allowance), back stitching at the beginning and end. make sure to leave an opening to turn it right-side out – i left the length of a square unsewn.
step 11. trim the corners and turn right-side out through the opening.
step 12. pin opening shut, folding in fabric to match seam allowance. sew around entire blanket perimeter, back stitching at beginning and end.
both the back and the front are so soft, perfect for cuddling.
one of my favorite t-shirts was too small to be used in the blanket, so i whipped up an easy burp cloth out of it. after trimming the shirt to size, i cut a piece of terry cloth fabric the same size for the back. with right sides pinned together, i sewed around the edge, leaving an opening a few inches wide. after turning right side out, i turned in the opening edges to match the seam allowance, pinned, and sewed around the entire edge. done!
though i have plans to make my son a chenille blanket, ryan has informed me that he also needs a chicago sports t-shirt blanket of his own. i need to start collecting the shirts now…
linked to remodelaholic