How To Make Yarn From T-Shirts

This is hands down one of my favorite projects we’ve done to date, and as a crocheter, I found it super helpful!

This is the perfect creative way to get rid of old t-shirts! If your family is anything like mine, I’m sure you have a stash of old t-shirts that either don’t fit, have a stain or are just out of style. Or maybe your kids think the shirts are fine, but you have other plans for them. Hey, no judgment here! No matter how you get ’em, once you have a pile of 4 or 5 shirts, we’ll show you how to turn it into sturdy yarn to crochet with!

This is hands down one of my favorite projects we’ve done to date, and as a crocheter, I found it super helpful! I have already made a bathroom mat, a purse, and an organizer basket out of old t-shirts. Go ahead and check out the video below, and see the full written instructions beneath the video. The first half shows how to make t-shirt yarn, and the second half gives instruction on crocheting a purse. See the free pattern at the bottom of this post! Happy t-shirt crocheting, friends!


– 4 t-shirts

– Scissors

– Oversized crochet hook

– For straps: leather cord, x-acto knife, brad pins, hot glue


1. Lay t-shirt out flat, cut off the bottom seam and below the arm holes. Fold shirt almost in half, from left to right, leaving one end about 2 inches below the other end.

2. Cut 1 inch thick strips, starting at the folded end, and ending right after the top folded layer. This leaves about a 1.5-2 inch margin on one side.

3. Unfold t shirt and lay the uncut stip in the middle of the surface, flat. Starting at the bottom, cut diagonally up to the next space.

4. Pull on the cord to stretch and round. Wrap up in a ball. Repeat with more shirts for 5-6 balls of yarn total.

Free Purse Pattern:

1. Chain 15, turn.

2. In second chain from the hook, single crochet across. Chain 1, turn.

3. Single crochet next 3 rows.

4. In the last row, single crochet 3 times in the last stitch, chain 2 along the short edge, and single crochet 3 times in the next space to round out the corner. Continue working in the round.

5. Single crochet across, with 3 single crochets in the next corner. Single crochet across the short edge, and 3 single crochet in the corner again. Connect to the beginning of the round with a slip stitch. This completes round 1, and the base of the purse.

6. Round 2: Single crochet in back loops only around.

7. For the straps: Cut a length of leather strap. Make a small slice close to both ends. Lay the strap on the inside of the purse, and poke the end through one of the holes made by the single crochets. Thread it back through so the end is on the inside of the purse, and poke through the slice you just made. Secure with hot glue. Repeat for other side of strap, and the other strap.