Thursday, March 27, 2014

Let's Cut Up Our T-Shirts!

t-shirt bracelet, tie dye bracelet, t shirt bracelet, DIY, t-shirt upcycle,

Last night I stayed up late, cutting up t-shirts. I decided to make some "t-shirt bracelets," and the original plan was to see how many different bracelets I could make with one shirt (spoiler - it's a lot), but I didn't care for some of the bracelets I made, so then I just stopped, hahah. You don't need anything fancy for these to look nice; for mine I just used an old tie-dyed cotton shirt. I was a little sad to be cutting up the shirt (I really liked it), but really it was covered in holes and stains and I would never wear it again. I think using it for these worked out pretty well, and now it can live on, instead of sitting in a drawer collecting dust.

The one I'm wearing on my wrist is my favorite one. It has what I learned is called a josephine knot! Figuring out the knot was a little confusing the first few times, but once you figure out the trick it's really simple. You can use two strands and make it thicker (like mine), or just use one and have a more delicate and subtle one. I found that two strands showcased the knot better. The fabric for my t-shirt was really thin, so with this knot it looked kind of lame with just one strand, hahah. These are fun to wear, and they're so soft you can almost forget you're wearing it!

t-shirt bracelet, tie dye bracelet, t shirt bracelet, DIY, t-shirt upcycle

I used a couple different tutorials to make these. I was looking up t-shirt bracelets on Pinterest and saw them in a few different places, so I used tips from all of them to just wing it. Google "josephine knot t-shirt bracelet," and you'll find lots of tutorials to choose from. If you're having trouble with the knot, I found this image on Google which helped me a bit!

The second bracelet I'm holding is just a super easy wrap-around bracelet. I laid my shirt flat and cut straight across the bottom, so I had one big loop of fabric. I wrapped the loop around my wrist until it fit the way I wanted. If you want you can just leave it like that and call it a day. Personally I hate it when wrap bracelets aren't secured, because then it's just flopping around everywhere. I cut out a small rectangle of t-shirt and wrapped it around a small section to secure it. Because I'm lazy, I used Elmer's glue to secure the strip together. It dries clear, so you can't see it, but it feels a little stiff. If you're less lazy then I suggest sewing it together! Fabric glue is also a thing, but for some reason I've never had luck with it.

Some tips: 

With anything you make using t-shirt strips, make sure you stretch them out so the ends furl together before you do anything else with them. They stretch out easily, so you'll just want to get that out of the way first, and keep in mind when they stretch they'll be a few inches longer!

If you only have plain shirts to cut up but want something more colorful, there are a few things you can try. Obviously you can dye it, but that takes forever. The best part of these bracelets is that they're fun, simple and QUICK. So instead of that tedious process, you can use a bleach spray or pen if you're using a dark colored shirt. You can also use spray on fabric paints. Thrift stores are always full of peoples old tie-dye shirts, so that's an option too.

Keep in mind the thickness/thiness of the shirt you're using. Just because something you see in a tutorial looks one way, yours might look different depending what kind of t-shirt you use. One of the other bracelets I made with this shirt ended up looking pretty bad, because the woman in the tutorial was using a much thinner shirt than mine!

So there you go. What do you think? I can see myself wearing these everywhere once it warms up outside! The weather has been playing games over here lately. Last week I was wearing shorts, but right now it's cold and rainy. Oh well. I'm off to go find more ideas to try...but I might just make more josephine knot bracelets instead. Heheh.


  1. Thanks a ton for sharing!!
    So creative. c:
    I've seriously been wondering how the hell one does this. XD


  2. How awesome that you were able to take a favorite shirt that you can no longer wear, and wear it every day! Love the directions! Even I might be able to follow these!

  3. These are really cute! I'll have to try these with my kids. :)

  4. Great idea on how to repurpose something!
    Thank you for joining in on #ThrowBackThursday!

  5. What a creative idea! Thanks for sharing with Hump Day Happenings.