Uses for Old Sheets

Category Reusing
Clean out your linen closet and put those old, worn, or stained sheets to a new use. This is a page about uses for old sheets.


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July 6, 2009

Just wanted to share an idea with you. I was at our local thrift shop to buy a sheet to re-cover the pads in our dogs cages and I bought a beautiful sheet for a $1.50 and find it's too nice to use in dog beds. Don't know what I will use it for now but got to thinking about all the decorating possibilities sheets have. I know some people are on very tight budgets. This might be an idea that could help.

By Joan

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I use 2 sheets to cover a light quilt that's worn. Tack the sheets every 6 inches then hem it on your sewing machine. You have a new quilt.

By Kathleen from Dothan, AL

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ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

July 6, 2009

Sheets are great, both new and used.

1. When purchasing new sheets, buy sheets individually and buy an extra sheet and make your own pillow cases, cheaper and you can get extras.


2. Old yardsale/flea market sheets make nice quilt backing.
Especially useful if you happen to find old quilts that were never assembled and you want an aged look to complement the front and back of the quilt.

3. Make coordinating window curtains from sheets. Great for master bedroom and adjoing master bath. Inexpensive decorator look!

4. Kitchen curtains. Coordinating cushions and table cloths.

Use your imagination. - Ms. Syd Barr - Dunkirk, MD


Uses for Old Sheets

These are great ideas. Old flannel sheets can be used to make children's nightwear. You just cut the worn part out of the centre and use the good bits left. If the strips are too narrow for PJs, make pillow cases. Or even dusters!

There is no need to toss old sheets that are too thin in the middle, lol. (If only I could get thin in the middle!)

By Anne


Making Dish Towels From Old Sheets

I make dish towels out of my old sheets. My children may use these to wipe their hands or whatever--they do it whether or not I give permission. These get stained but I don't mind. I keep my good ones for me to use.


By Jill

Uses for Old Sheets

I've made shower curtains from antique sheets found at yard sales. The are easier to wash and more appealing to me than plastic. (01/30/2005)

By Genevieve

Old Sheets and Blankets

Donate old sheets and blankets to the humane society.

By joni514

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July 6, 2009

We are looking for all the practical uses for old sheets that are no longer in good enough shape to use.


Brainstorm: Uses for old sheets?


Uses for old sheets? Here goes:

Drop cloths to cover furniture when painting.

Cut up into square rags and keep for washing the car, dusting, polishing, wiping up big messes, and other cleaning duties. Keep some handy under the kitchen sink and some in the bathroom, too.

Cut off the good parts and turn them into pillowcases.

Cut up the sheets and make bean bags for your kids to toss -- use inexpensive rice or small dried beans as filling.

Make a cloth bag to hang from your clothesline to put your clothespins in.

Make a "rag bag" -- a larger cloth bag to hang from a nail or hook to keep your clean rags in.

Keep one in your car or trunk, spread out, to keep the trunk clean when transporting items like peat moss or bags of potting soil.

Spread one over the cushions of the couch, or foot of your bed, etc., folded in half, wherever your cats sit and lie frequently. Then wash the sheet regularly (it collects the cats hair).


Put one over the back seat of your car to keep it clean if you have little ones or if you are coming home from the beach (keeps the sand off the seat).

Let your kids make fun tents under the tables and chairs with them! Or make an outdoor tent over the clothesline in the nice weather. Sheets are great for this!

Old sheets make good outdoor picnic table cloths.

Hope these help!


By Ness

Brainstorm: Uses for old sheets?

I used old, coordinating sheets from a rummage sale to make valances for my daughter's room, and had enough left to cover her vanity chair and a small footstool. The center of the sheets had small rips from use on a sofabed, the seller said, but the projects I used them for avoided these holes.

We have used them as the ubiquitous ghost costumes, but also have cut them into strips and wrapped my son as a mummy. The strips were used afterward for rags. (01/03/2001)


By one_ramp

Brainstorm: Uses for old sheets?

I use old or odd sheets to make new pillow cases. I can get 5 or 6 pillow cases out of one large sheet. Also have used one for a couple of aprons, and a smock to wear when I'm painting.

- Pat


Brainstorm: Uses for old sheets?

I make antique looking pillows from old sheets. I add bits of lace and buttons and I sell them at craft shows. (01/04/2001)

By go1967gto

Brainstorm: Uses for old sheets?

cut into wide strips and use as homemade baby wipes (wipe solution: bath and 1T. baby oil to 2qts., or less, of water); use in first aid kit, as compresses/bandages/sterile wipes, etc.; cut-up and use as dish cloths, wash cloths, etc.; use for patterns such as those for doll clothes, dress-up clothes, etc.; stitch around a bar of plain soap, to make the perfect pin cushion (makes needle go through fabric easily!); cut into cloth napkin-size, decorate w/rick-rack (or, whatever) and stitch around edges; cut into large squares, decorate (if you wish) and use for bandanas. There are endless possibilities; your own imagination is the limit! (01/04/2001)

By apinder1

Brainstorm: Uses for old sheets?

Rags, cut to make pillowcases, doll clothes, crafts, rag rugs, quilt squares!


Brainstorm: Uses for old sheets?

I used some old sheets that I had to make drawstring bags for our grade school fun fair. We sold them for a quarter, and the kids had something cute to put all their goodies in.

I like to keep one in my van to use as a cover for the back seat when the kids are eating something messy--like ice cream. And also it's nice to have if we decide to stop at the beach or park.

I hope these are helpful! (01/04/2001)



Brainstorm: Uses for old sheets?

They are good to make clothes patterns with, they don't tear like paper and cost nothing!

Around the edges where the sheets are still in good condition they can be cut to make pillow cases. Another use, they make great hankies. Nice and soft on the nose when one has cold or flu !
- Kind Regards, Sherrie!

Brainstorm: Uses for old sheets?

Uses for old sheets:

  1. Cover fruit trees for protection from spring frosts.

  2. Use as a paint drop cloth.

  3. Clean strips can be used to hold bandages in place on an arm, leg, or finger.

  4. Use as practice fabric when trying a new sewing project.

  5. Tear into small pieces as paint or grease rags.

  6. The best of the worn out sheets usually still can be used for camp bedding.

  7. Cover car upholstery to protect from messy clothes.

  8. Nail a double layer of sheeting over the door of a doghouse to cut down on wind and snow blowing in during bad storms.

  9. Use best section as fabric to teach a very young child to sew. (My first project was a simple skirt hand sewn for a little sister. That was 42 years ago and I still sew.)

  10. Use as fabric to teach a child to embroider.

  11. Tear into strips for staking up tomatoes.

  12. Soft sections can be used as a handkerchief

  13. Roll up as a draft chaser at the bottom of a door.

  14. Use as fabric to make a laundry bag.

  15. Set good sections aside for craft projects.

  16. Cut into strips to use as cable ties on a garden hose for storage.

  17. Use as a temporary cover on a lawn chair that needs washed.

  18. Make a small pillowcase from good sections.

  19. Use to apply stain when doing a woodworking project.

  20. Fold the sheet to fit on top of the dryer as a small ironing surface in place of an ironing board.


By Charlotte

Brainstorm: Uses for old sheets?

Old sheets work great when you are painting a room. Use them to protect carpets and furniture. Can also use to cover a sensitive plant when it gets below freezing outside. Also, drape a sheet over a table or over a few chairs to create a playhouse for a young child. - Darby (01/05/2001)

Uses for old sheets?

The only thing I feel I can add to all those amazing tips is this.

When I was little and we had very little money my mum used to 'inside-out' the sheets. When they got worn in the middle she would cut them straight up the centre and hem the new edges carefully, then sew the old outside edges together. Done well you hardly notice as the seam in the middle. It can look like it's been folded in the cupboard. It pretty much doubles the life of your sheets and it's not uncomfortable, I never noticed the difference.


By Chickybiker

Uses for old sheets?

Old sheets, pillow cases, blankets, and towels are probably badly needed by your local humane society or other animal rescue. Many can be cut down to use as cleaning rags, in addition to providing the animals with a soft, warm place to sleep. Many shelters also use toilet seat covers for cat beds. You can clean out your linen closet and improve the lives of abandoned and abused animals at the same time. (08/12/2004)

By Patti

Uses for old sheets?

Use for quilt backing. My husband's favorite quilt is one his great-grandmother made using an old sheet for the backing. All the squares (mostly polyester knit hee hee) were used from worn out clothing. His mother can point to the squares and tell who wore what outfit! ha ha

I use them to take to the park to use for a tablecloth if we are eating on the picnic tables or to lay on the ground to sit on.

We also keep several in our camping containers to have on hand for whatever need may arise.

When I was a kid I remember me and my sister tacking a sheet to the ceiling to divide our room so that we each had our own "private" space. (08/12/2004)

By Tawnda

Uses for old sheets?

I always use old sheets for dusting "rags." When sheets are cut, you get many "rags," and they are nice and soft. They will not scratch your wood furniture. (08/16/2004)

By Megan

Using Old Bed Sheets


  • pillow cases
  • pillow cover to use on airline pillows
  • table cloths and napkins
  • baby crib sheets
  • cut quilt pieces and make a quilt
  • duvet cover
  • cover a ratty old blanket
  • window toppers or curtains

Use your imagination


By Syd

Uses for old sheets?

Keep one or two in the trunk of your car for covering bleachers at football/baseball games or a ground cover at a picnic.

Great to use when travelling in summer & the air conditioning may be too cool for someone in the car. (12/30/2004)

By C.S.

Uses for old sheets?

When we made Christmas pudding 2 weeks ago we put the pudding in the bowl, covered it with wax paper. Then we cut up an old sheet to fit over the top (we cut the material about 6" larger than the top of the bowl.) We centered the material over the bowl and tied a string under the rim of the bowl to make the sheet taunt, brought up the edges and tied the ends so we had a "handle" at the top. We grabbed the sheet "handle" afterwards when we took the bowl out of the water. (12/30/2004)

By brenda newton

Uses for old sheets?

I'm very new to this site (about an hour lol) but I had to suggest something that I didn't see here.

This suggestion comes from my high school art teacher (oh so long ago). He had us all bring in one old sheet. Then when we brought them to the school he had bought some strips of door trim and thin strips of wood. I guess they would have been about 2" x 4"? It's fairly cheap. Using an ordinary hand saw, he cut them off into paired lengths of many sizes. Stapled, nailed or glued together, the pieces can make frames of all sizes, then are laid down in the middle of the sheets. The sheet is pulled over the wood and taut and stapled to the "up" side. Trim off excess fabric and you now have a kid-friendly, acrylic-friendly painting canvas. I still have the three paintings I made that day, all from one of mom's oldest threadbare sheets. (12/30/2004)

By Strange Angel

Uses for old sheets?

I have used an almost thread bare fitted sheet and sewed on a flat sheet to it--- a rummage sale find of my sons favorite character. It is now his favorite sheet and it only cost 25 cents. (12/30/2004)

By Karaof4 from Minnesota

Uses for old sheets?

Plastic Grocery Bag Storage Tubes:

  1. Cut piece of old sheet into approx. 20" x 16" piece.

  2. Fold in half lengthwise and sew up side seam to create a tube.

  3. TOP and BOTTOM edges: Fold edges over twice (as in hemming) to create pocket. Sew hem, leaving small opening to thread elastic through.

  4. Insert flat 1/4" elastic (approx. 7" long)* through opening using a safety pin. Close pin before inserting into pocket. Sew or tie elastic ends together. Sew the little opening closed after elastic is in place.

  5. Cut old sheet into approx. 10" x 3". Fold in half (lengthwise) twice to create a sturdy strap. Fold in half to create a loop and sew it to top of tube.

  6. Hang tube.

  7. Insert plastic grocery bags into fabric tube either through top of bottom.

*NOTE: Elastic must be long enough for the finished product to allow your hand (fist) to pass through easily as you insert plastic grocery bags into the fabric tube.

By MichBucz

Uses for old sheets?

Doggie pull toy: tear sheet into 3 strips, knot at the end and braid. Knot at the other end. You can even make a small one (Chihuahua size) for cats and spray it with catnip spray. For large dogs, use 6 strips and section into 3 parts (2 strips/each part). Follow instructions above.

By Jennifer Henson

Uses for old sheets?

Keep one in the trunk of your car and if icy weather is threatening spread it over the windshield and close the front doors over the ends on each side. When you are ready to drive, remove the sheet shake off the ice and take off, no defrosting. (01/01/2005)

By cj

Uses for old sheets?

Rag Rugs! Tear them into strips and crochet them into a rug. (01/07/2005)

By Mary

Reusing Flat Bedsheets

Don't throw out your old flat bedsheets! They make excellent ground cloths for a picnic, sunbathing, or they make a great "floorcloth" for your tent while camping. they are easier to pack then blankets, and if you use a light color they will help reflect the heat from the sun. If your sheets are stained or just dingy and you do not want to have them seen in public try your hand at tie-dye or fabric painting to cover those stains.

By Kat (01/17/2005)

By ThriftyFun

Uses for old sheets?

Use to cover motorcycle, let it breath and keeps the dust off, during winter storage. (01/17/2005)

By Mike

Uses for old sheets?

I used an old bottom fitted sheet to protect a 2 seater lounge, (settee/sofa). The corners fitted onto the back and seat corners so it didn't slip down when the dogs climbed onto it!


By Jo Bodey

Uses for old sheets?

I save my old sheets and use them for dropclothes when I paint, they are also great when the kids cut and paint pumpkins. (01/18/2005)

By Paula

Uses for old sheets?

I had a pair of "worn in the middle" fitted sheets with good elastic and 2 like-new fitted sheets that were over-dried on "cotton" -that ruined the elastic. Since they coordinated with a comforter and valance, I put the worn ones on first, then the others. Used small safety pins to pin the bad elastic to the good. Not great, but OK. I don't have a sewing machine or do much sewing so. (02/28/2009)

By Liz

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