Simple DIY No-Sew T-Shirt Pillow

Young girl with colorful diy pillows sitting on white background
T-shirts are a wardrobe staple. If you’re anything like me, you have WAY too many. Comfy ones, over-sized ones, faded ones white, tie-dyed ones, fitted ones, crisp, new, ones…the list goes on and on! I love t-shirts almost as much as I love coffee…and I really love coffee. Between my husband and I, we probably have something like 20 or 30 old shirts clogging up our dresser drawers. So, it’s definitely time to purge.
As we went through the pile, we agreed most had seen better days or were ready to find a new home. We also found a few shirts that had been forgotten about, but we weren’t quite ready to get rid of. There’s something about t-shirts that makes them hard to just toss into the giveaway pile. We realized that a lot of the t-shirts we’ve kept act as our own personal time capsule.

Materials Needed:

Pillow insert (or old throw pillow)
Old t-shirt
Ironing board (optional)
Iron (optional)

So what do you do with them?

Easy…just upcycle and save these memories into pillows! I had enough old shirts to try several different pillow-making methods. Here is the easiest, no-sew version. It’s a great project that even your little ones can try. Let’s get started!

How To:

  1. Turn shirt inside out. (If necessary, iron to make shirt flat.)
  2. Place your pillow on top of the shirt to measure. Use the marker to draw a line around the pillow leaving about 2-3 inches extra space. For longer fringe, leave 4 or more inches. (The design on this shirt didn’t allow for much extra space near the neckline, so I opted for shorter fringe.)
  3. Use the scissors to cut both layers of the shirt at the same time. Take your time so the edges won’t be jagged. Then, turn the panels right side out and stack on top of one another.
  4. Cut a notch at each corner to avoid excess fabric.
  5. Cut edges into 1inch wide strips. Be sure to use the pillow as a guide so you don’t cut too far. (Protip: Cut one edge into strips then skip to step 6.) Repeat on all edges.
  6. Once all the edges are cut into strips, start tying the strips from the 2 panels together. start with the corners to make sure edges are snug.
  7. Once the strips from are 4 edges are tied, you’re done!

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