Monday, August 22, 2016

How I debone a shirt

I'm not sure deboning a shirt is a real phrase. But, when I want to take apart a shirt, for the material, I have made some decisions about what is worth the time and what is not. Most of the shirts I have used in quilts, I have cut with specific sizes and shapes in mind, so I don't feel the need to be careful in my initial cutting.
 I start by taking the collar off and throwing it away. There is sometimes enough fabric in the collar to put in a string bin, but is generally less than 1 1/2 inches which is my smallest size to keep, so I no longer bother trying to save any.

I put the cuff together and cut it off roughly. I don't save it anymore either.
I make a clip at the top of both button plackets on the front of the shirt and then rip it off. I throw it away as well. I have jars of buttons, so most of the time, I don't bother with them either.
I put the front to back and cut out the sleeve, trying to feel and get it as close to seam to seam as I can. If it's rough, It doesn't bother me. I remove the fronts from the yoke and rip it down the side. Then I take the yoke off the back. I fold each piece separate from one another and store them by color. The yokes and the sleeves are put in the use it anytime bin, while the rest are folded and put away.
And they are so lovely all in a row in a drawer in the spare bedroom. I do wash them right away when I bring them home. They live by the couch until I watch tv and cut them into designer fabric.

I'm linking with Ems scrapbag


A place to create


  1. I have seldom taken shirts apart. My problem is I've had a few shirts I really like and was sad to find they had a little of lycra or some other poly type fabric. Sigh. I kept the purple one but not any others. After I use most of my stash I will start hounding garage sales and Goodwill!

  2. Your process would go pretty fast it seems. Good thought to decide what's important and what's not.

  3. It's great that you don't worry about keeping certain pieces of the shirt and just let them go. Thanks for sharing your process. I've never taken shirts apart before, but I can seethe advantage of using old shirts in a quilt. It would be so lovely! Thanks so much for linking to MCM!