Do t shirts multiply in your house? My son has so many hanging in his closet that the bar bends under their weight. Kids and adults today get t shirts for every occasion. Not only do we get shirts for sports leagues, but also for camps, concerts, fundraisers, school events, 5Ks, colleges, high schools, and many other organizations and events.
I began making t shirt memory quilts as graduation gifts for my nieces and nephews. Inspired by an article in a magazine, I have created several designs for these functional blankets.
Word-of-mouth business grew into an online business in which I sell memory blankets, pillows and other handmade items nationally and internationally.
I would like to think that my success is entirely due to the quality of my work. But I think that part of my success is due to the difficult economy and a shift in attitudes toward what we consume. When budgets are tight, we are careful about how we spend our money. We focus on the necessities and then make thoughtful and meaningful choices when spending on other items. People are more willing to spend money on a handmade item rather than a mass-produced item.
T shirt quilts can preserve memories while providing a practical and cozy blanket. They are wonderful gifts for high school graduates as they head off to college. I have also made numerous blankets out of the clothing of loved ones who have died, whether a spouse, parent, or child. The recipients wrap themselves in the memory of this special person when they wrap themselves in the quilt.
The quilts are not limited to t shirts. I've used shorts, button-down shirts, baseball pants, basketball jerseys, baby clothes and blankets. Each blanket tells a unique story.
So as you cycle through your t shirt wardrobe, consider whether it may be worth saving or repurposing into a t shirt quilt blanket. Visit a local quilt shop or the many online tutorials to learn how to make one. Ask me for help! It is satisfying to take shirts that sit in a drawer and to create a blanket filled with memories.