How to Turn an Old T-Shirt Into a Washcloth

How to Turn an Old T-Shirt Into a Washcloth

How to Turn an Old T-Shirt Into a Washcloth

Turning an old t-shirt into a washcloth is an easy way to reduce waste and save money. With just a few basic steps, I can transform an old shirt into a functional and eco-friendly cleaning cloth.

Gather Materials

  • I will need an old cotton t-shirt that I no longer wear. I should avoid shirts with graphics, as the ink can run.
  • Scissors to cut the t-shirt. Sharp scissors will cut the fabric cleanly.
  • Ruler or tape measure to measure and mark straight cutting lines.

Cut the T-Shirt

  • Lay the t-shirt flat on a table or other work surface. I want to cut rectangular or square pieces for the washcloths.

  • Measure and mark straight cutting lines across the width of the t-shirt. The size is up to me, but a good size for a washcloth is around 7 x 7 inches or 10 x 10 inches.

  • Use the scissors to cut along the marked lines. Cut all the way through both layers of fabric.

  • Repeat until I have cut squares or rectangles across the entire shirt. I will likely get 4-5 washcloths from a typical t-shirt.

Finish the Raw Edges (Optional)

  • The raw edges may fray after repeated washing and use. To prevent fraying, I can finish the edges in a few different ways:

  • Turn under 1⁄4 inch of fabric and sew a straight stitch around each cloth.

  • Use an iron-on hem tape to seal the edges. Follow package directions.

  • Apply fabric glue around the edges and allow to completely dry.

  • If I don’t mind frayed edges, this finishing step can be skipped.

Use and Care

  • I can now use my recycled t-shirt washcloths for cleaning and scrubbing jobs. They work great with just water or in combination with a cleaning solution.

  • Launder the cloths in the washing machine using hot water to fully sanitize them. Tumble dry low.

  • Avoid using bleach or fabric softener, as these can reduce absorbency.

  • The washcloths can be reused many times before wearing out! When they become too tattered and threadbare, remember they can be cut into smaller rags before a final disposal.

With a pair of scissors and an old t-shirt destined for the donation bin, I can make reusable, eco-friendly cleaning cloths. This easy upcycling project reduces waste and saves money on paper towels or store bought washcloths. Get creative with different shirt colors and styles for a rainbow of cleaning cloths!