How to Make a Necklace and a Headband From an Old T-Shirt

Don't throw out that old t-shirt! Learn how to turn it into yarn so you can make two crafts, a necklace and a headband.

There is more than one way to wear a t-shirt. How about on your head? Once you learn the basics of turning t-shirts into yarn, yesterday’s outfit may quickly become tomorrow’s craft supply.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Not all t-shirts are created equal and some work better for making t-shirt yarn than others. Shirts without side seams or designs will work best. Experiment with different colors and perhaps try tie-dying an old shirt before making it into yarn. Also, remember the larger the shirt the more yarn it will make.

Watch this episode of DIY This With Jennifer Perkins to find out more on making t-shirt yarn.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Tools and Materials

  • t-shirts
  • scissors (or rotary cutter)
  • large eyed needle
  • beads with large holes
  • jewelry findings
  • pliers
  • hot-glue gun
  • headband
  • two small pieces of felt

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Start by folding the t-shirt in half, sleeve to sleeve. Don't overlap them edge to edge, lay the top of the shirt about an inch away the bottom part of the shirt, as pictured.

Cut straight across under the armpits. The top portion of the shirt will not be used for making yarn.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Next, cut off the bottom seam of the shirt.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

With the shirt still folded (make sure the top fold is about an inch below the bottom fold) begin cutting in strips using either scissors or a rotary cutter. Make cuts about 1/2" to 1" wide.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

DO NOT cut through the fold of the bottom layer of the t-shirt. Just to right above the top piece of shirt.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Carefully unfold to reveal strips. One end will still be connected, this is where you will cut.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

With the very first cut your scissors, go at an angle from the top of the strip to the edge of the fabric. Then to make one continuous strip of fabric, make the next cuts diagonally from the second bottom cut to the first top cut.

Gently tug at the yarn and it will turn in on itself creating yarn. Now what to do with all that T-shirt yarn? How about wearing it!

T-Shirt Necklace

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Cut t-shirt yarn in various lengths. Using a large-eyed needle, thread the beads.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

A bit of glue can be added under each bead to ensure it stays in place.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Join all the pieces at the end with a large clasp closure. Add a bit of glue and crimp shut with pliers.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Add an extra chain and a clasp on the end so that the size is adjustable.

T-Shirt Flower Headband

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Start at one end of the headband, begin wrapping it with t-shirt yarn securing the yarn with hot glue as you go. Cover the entire band.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Using two colors of t-shirt yarn, twist yarn together and roll it into pinwheels creating small round flowers. Use hot glue on the backs to hold it together.

Use hot glue to attach the yarn flowers onto a piece of felt so you'll have one big patch of flowers.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Glue the patch onto the headband. Glue the second smaller piece of felt underneath wrapping around the headband and onto the larger flower covered felt piece.

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

Photo by: Jennifer Perkins

Jennifer Perkins

How else will you wear your t-shirts? Don’t forget you can crochet with t-shirt yarn too to make a DIY Hanging Planter.

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