DIY: Upcycled T-shirt Scarf | Haute Macabre

DIY: Upcycled T-shirt Scarf


This is my extra-special, extra blurry phone cam DIY special.

This cute scarf starts out as two old T-shirts (actually, I ended up using two and a quarter as I had some bits left over from experimenting). When choosing your shirts, go for extra squishy. Note that for your $, big men’s shirts have a lot more material. I spent $1.99 on each shirt at Goodwill.  Also, if you pick a shirt with a side seam, your scarf will have seams in it. A seamless shirt equals a seamless scarf (duh).  You can use plain shirts or any patterned shirt where the pattern does not alter the texture of the cotton. No iron-on designs! T shirts only, as the entire thing hinges on the fabric.


1- cut off the botton seam, and the sleeves and collar, leaving a tube. I used two shirts, but one or three are also do-able.

2- fold the tube on the closed side, leaving a margin at the top. Note that the open parts are now on the sides!

3- fold the tube again, keeping the margin.


4) cut the tube like so, leaving that top margin intact. I suggest evenly spacing the cuts, about 1 1/2 inches apart.

5) This is what you should have now.

6) OK, this is the hardest part of the whole operation, but I believe in you.  You need to cut a DIAGONAL from the top of your first cut, across the margin, to the bottom of the second cut. Then you need to do this for each cut down the line. You are making one long ribbon- at the end, you will need to go back and cut the last loop free.

7) now you should have a pile of T-shirt ribbon. Grab it every six inches or so and yank, and it will politely roll up into yarn for you.


8) Arrange your T-shirt yarn like so. The oval should be big enough that you can wrap it three times and still stick your head through. I suggest figuring out how long it should be to go around your head comfortably, and making it three times that long.

9) I suggest braiding and tying to attach the shirts to one another, because I’m too lazy to sew.

10) (optional) wrap a short section with a leftover end or spare piece – it will keep your scarf from tangling endlessly, plus hide any messy ends that didn’t work out right.

11) You did it!

11 Comment

  1. I think I can help clear up the confusion with the sixth step if you’d like! 😀

    Where the margin is, you’ll want to spread that flat, so you can see where the cuts start on either side.

    With the diagonal cuts, you can get a ruler if you like, line it up from the end of the first cut, over the ‘margin’ or seam or whatever, to the end of the SECOND cut on the other side of the margin. Once you make that cut, the fabric should begin to unloop into one long line 😀

    The start of the cuts will still be a t-shirt loop, but once you go through and cut the rest of the shirt, you can come back at the end and cut it so it forms one big long line of “t-shirt yarn”

    I hope this makes sense- I spent a bit of time puzzling over it before I had a friend help me >:P

  2. I finally got around to making one of these! Murder on my hands, using crappy scissors, but it looks great! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Ooooh, I get it. This could be fun. And for the price of two biggie teeshirts at the Goodwill, certainly worth the price 😀

  4. Curves- Yes, you can indeed do that! In fact, it almost seems easier-I didn’t because this way I didn’t have fabric everywhere right away.

    Stella Maris- I SAID step 6 was the hard one. Geez. Lyric is an unappreciative wench, and you should tickle her in her sleep.

    Tina M- What you are trying to do is make a continuous spiral of fabric. You are just cutting across the margin diagonally from each cut to the one adjacent. The only place you cut ‘out’ is from the edge to the first cut.

  5. i just did your tutorial. so you know, step number 6 is confusing, maybe a clearer picture is in order?

    i gave it to lyric, she totally didn’t appreciate it, the poohead.