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Recycled Clothing Crafts

Looking for recycled clothing crafts? Here are some crafts that you can make with old clothing. Feel free to post your ideas in the feedback forum.


With my Family, I have a lot of clothes passed around. We don't throw anything away. Cut off all the buttons, zippers and belt loops, save.


I cut all the material off and the seams that are left I sew together to make Braided Rugs. Iron all the pieces of good material and store in a box (flat.) I have some really nice pieces for quilts.

When the children are bored I have them cut material. Then sew it together. No matter how bad they do they are having fun. I give something special to the one that finishes their sewing first.

I sort material by color and then also one box with just about every color in it. This is for crazy quilts. Stick to the basic color red, blue, green. etc. I put all white and black in another box and use this for the trim or binding. So you really have some nice quilts and didn't cost you much.

By Marlyne Jeane

Gift Jars and Doll Clothing

Don't forget to save some small-patterned, nice colored pieces to place over jar lids if you're canning for "Gifts From Your Kitchen". Almost any pretty fabric works great.


When my daughters were young, I made enough Barbie clothes to dress every Barbie in existence. I still love to make and dress dolls, but today, I make my own cloth dolls, dress them in "Tea Party" dresses (recycling old clothing), and give them to my lady friends who are also 70 or more years old. (My age)

Girls never lose their love for pretty dolls. If you're lucky enough to still have your mother or grandmother, make them a doll for their birthday or for Christmas and watch their eyes light up. They will cherish your thoughtfulness.

Hot pads made with leftover or recycled clothing fabric are always good to have, as well as pot holders. Line with pieces of old quilted bed pads to make them thick and protective for hands and table surface.

You will be limited only by your own imagination, so don't ever be afraid to ask for advice and more ideas.

All the best to you fellow-crafters.


By Julia in Orlando, FL

For Cleaning

If the clothes are totally faded or full of holes, they still make good scrub rags or grease rags. We use a lot of these. A friend said he used to fold old tee shirts into a pad and scrub the grill with it. If you have the right kind of mop, you can put old clothes in the clamp for a new (free) mop head. I've used tee shirts, sweat shirts, and old boot socks for those. Parts of tee shirts cut to size and sewed together in a double layer if you're ambitious make good dish rags. We even use one to wash our cow before and after milking. (09/25/2005)

By Coreen

Jeans Purse

I once saw a handbag made from a pair of jeans. Cut off the legs and sew them shut, then add a zipper to the waist area, and 2 straps.

By bulrush


T-shirts: I use old t-shirts to cover my dog's pillows sometimes. I also cover my pillow with a t-shirt if I take a nap with wet hair - then the pillowcase / pillow stays dry. In a pinch, cotton t-shirts are good as a towel or drying hair if you are out of clean towels (I know - lazy). And old T-shirts are good for drying the dog after her bath.


Soccer shirts: The boy I took care of made a neat pillow out of his outgrown soccer shirts. He sewed them up on his mother's sewing machine and stuffed with fiberfill or rags. They were bright colors. They ended up in the "fort" one summer, then later to decorate his room.

By TJDumplin

Rag Rugs

Fabric scraps from old clothing can torn into strips and braided or crocheted to make rag rugs. I also heard of a quilt that was made from old ties. Has anyone ever heard of this or know where to find instructions?

By AnnMel

Uses for Sweaters

I have seen old sweaters used several ways:

1. quilts
2. pillows
3. purses

By wyoKrista

Clothespin Bag, Quilts

Recycle a small baby dress into a clothespin bag by adding a hanger and leaving the back open. Then sew up the hemmed tail.

Recycle Jeans legs to make a quilt. Add your own special touches. Save them and make a special quilt with some of your children's favorite clothes, you can always cut pieces of their favorite shirts and add on top of their jeans when you piece it together.


By seamstress

Recycled Clothing Crafts

Cut clothing into squares and sew them together to make a baby quilt, a couch or chair cover up or even a quilt for the bed or couch. You can even use these for windows coverings or for a window valance. Use your imagination and see what you come up with. Cover a toy box, a picture frame etc. Have fun with it. I also use buttons from the clothes I discard to decorate picture frames, small mirrors, etc.

By Sandi G

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By guest (Guest Post)
November 23, 20060 found this helpful

I read all the tips about recycling old clothes. The tip for making a babyquilt: I don't know. When my daughter was born, I got a quilt, made of pieces of old clothes. The friend, from whom I got the quilt must have worked weeks and weeks I think. I used it all the time because it was so beautifull. But you know baby's. They pee on the quilt, they throw up on the quilt etc. So I had to wash it every now and then. Unfortunately, because it was made of such old materials, it felt apart completely.


But here is a nice picture from a piece of art.

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By guest (Guest Post)
November 24, 20060 found this helpful

how do you make the rag rugs? are they hard to make?

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By guest (Guest Post)
August 11, 20070 found this helpful

Any clothes that I can't send to the thrift store (stains on one side) I cut into squares for quilts or for long sleeve shirts that still fit but are too stained to wear I make them into shrugs for my daughter.

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By guest (Guest Post)
October 4, 20070 found this helpful

Need to know more about Recycling Clothes, Jeans, Shirts, Skirts, Dresses. What can I make out of these things? Thank You!

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By guest (Guest Post)
October 5, 20070 found this helpful

For a wealth of ideas for recycling clothing, check out this website under clothing. There is a section about reconstructed clothing that should give you some ideas. The site is

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October 5, 20070 found this helpful

In 1955, when I was 2 years old, my great-aunt made me blouses from my father's old shirts. The material was white, with a very fine cord, almost like corduroy, but finer. I do not know the name of the material. Tante Emmie made the blouses with Peter Pan collars and short puffed sleeves. She put the front strips with the buttons and buttonholes onto my blouses. Tante Emmie died soon afterwards of the complications of diabetes. I think my mother probably gave the blouses away. How I would have loved to have at least one of those pieces of art to remember my father and Tante Emmie by!

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By guest (Guest Post)
January 27, 20080 found this helpful

I remember a rag rug that had 1-2 inch tails of all the different rags sticking out on top. It was soft and fluffy and each piece had a's old dress, baby shirt etc. It was a wonderful memory piece for my friend. Recently I have seen advertised in mail order books a beautful rag rug of the same idea but made from softly muted colors and out of T shirts or T shirt material. I would love to have directions to do this. I have tons of T shirt material waiting to be used.

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By guest (Guest Post)
December 28, 20080 found this helpful

I helped with an international fiber collaborative. People made blocks out of what ever material they wanted and mostly it was either recycled, or shopping bags, and some was clothing sewn into shapes like an oil rig or gas pump. I made an oil drop crochet out of yarn recycled from old sweaters and some left over scrap yarn and some wire. I also used bits of fabric for stuffing. Next project is to make something of fiber and cover the atlas rocket down at NASA in Huntsville Alabama.

So the art major, Jenifer marsh is got an okay and is going forward with the project. Anyone can submit a panel and you will not be rejected due to artistic level or background. That was the best part that everyone could participate. Many people were very resourceful with their ideas.
cherswares2001 AT

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August 9, 20110 found this helpful

Don't know if you're still monitoring this post, but I do hope you're keeping up the good work. That art piece shown in your picture is great :)

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