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How to Make T-Shirt Yarn

T-Shirt Yarn Tutorial
How To Make T-Shirt Yarn

Have you even seen those really cool chunky crochet projects made with t-shirt yarn and wondered, "How do they do that?" Wonder no more as I am going to demystify the process for you. Once you get started you will dig through all the closets in your house looking for t-shirts to turn into chunky cotton yarn.

For a printer-friendly version of this tutorial scroll all the way down to the bottom of the post.


  • Old T-Shirt (no seams along the sides) 


  • Cutting Wheel 
  • Cutting Mat 
  • Scissors 
  • Ruler 
  • Masking Tape (optional) 

Step One

First start by cutting the top part off of the shirt. We don't need the sleeves or any of that stuff. We just need a cylindrical tube of fabric with no seams. I do this by placing a piece of masking tape from armpit to armpit of the shirt and I cut along the line. Also, cut the bottom seam off of the shirt.

T-Shirt yarn tutorial
Cutting your shirt into a tube

Step Two

Next place the tube of fabric down flat on your cutting surface. The open ends should be on the left and the right, the closed ends should face the top and the bottom.

Step Three

Measure approximately an inch from the top and place a strip of masking tape along the top so that there is a 1-inch margin. This is a guide for when you will cut.

T-Shirt yarn tutorial
Use tape to add a 1-inch margin
when you make your t-shirt yarn for straight cuts

Step Four

Now along the bottom place your ruler. You can also use your cutting mat to assist in this. We want to cut one-inch strips up the fabric to the masking tape. You can use scissors to do this also but make sure they are very sharp and your cuts are as straight as possible.

T-Shirt yarn tutorial
Cut the shirt into strips but don't cut  past the tape

Step Five

Next we will open up the tube of fabric with the slits to that we can handle the margin that was left.

T-Shirt yarn tutorial
Shown is the part of the shirt you didn't cut

Step Six

 Make diagonal cuts as shown in the diagram on the right. The solid black lines represent the cuts you have made while the dotted lines represent the cuts to finish the yarn. We are trying to make one, long, continuous piece of fabric yarn. I suggest using scissors for this step so that you don't accidentally cut one of the slits in half.

Diagram of where to cut so your t-shirt yarn is one
continuous piece.

Step Seven

To finish the yarn give it a little bit of a pull to stretch out the fibers a little

T-Shirt yarn tutorial
Stretch the t-shirt so it looks like yarn

And That's It

Wind up your ball and that is all. You now have your very own t-shirt yarn.

T-Shirt yarn tutorial
Finished Project


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