Tag Archives: recycle tee shirt


I promised a prezzie for anyone guessing my score on the color chart quiz post– Debi guessed correctly that I scored an 8. Debi— ding ding ding– you win!!

Thanks for those of you with such confidence in my color ability! I suspect the low score less to do with my ability than it does with my good computer screen, and the ability to flip it at an angle to see the chart at somewhat of a grey scale.

While we’re discussing color, here’s a close up of one of the fabrics I dyed at Dye Day 2008:

In other news, the president of the PTA asked if I would make some Tee Bags out of some incorrectly screen school tee shirts. I made 40 bags, and some of the 6th graders will be hawking them (hopefully they will be more polite than silly…) at Back to School Night. The proceeds will go towards helping the 6th graders offset the cost of an upcoming field trip.

If you’re new to this blog, please check out the post titled “Tee Bags” for a photo tutorial on turning old tee shirts into shopping bags. The bags are really simple and fast to make (ahem, I just made FORTY!!) and they’re great for the farmer’s market, where bags can get kind of messy from all the leafy goodness. Just toss the tee bags in the wash, and you’re ready to go shopping again!


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Foreign intrigue and the front page

What an unusual day, yesterday!

It began with the carpet guy, installing new carpet in the hall and boys’ rooms. Last night was the first time the boys slept in their own separate rooms since the youngest got out of his crib. Around here, that fact is only awe-inspiring to me, so of course, I needed to share it with you all. Moms everywhere get those kind of significant milestones.

Anyway, the boys are happy as clams to have their own private rooms, and No, for the ninetieth time, boys,  NO LOCKS on the DOORS!! (Why do they think that they need locks? They’re in grade school, for goodness sake! It must be a boy thing).

While I was trying to look busy, yet available for question answering for the carpet guy, I thought I’d check on my email. Lo and behold, there’s an emailed comment from my blog that’s completely unintelligible to me. It doesn’t look like any language I recognize.  Lately I’ve been troubled by a lot of splogging (splogging:  when someone steals your blog content) I was kind of stern and actually, let’s be honest, really harsh in my demand request that my content be removed from her blog. And then….

I noodled around my blog stats. And there’s yet another blog or website, linking to mine, and now I’ve got like, quadrupled the amount of normal everyday traffic! Hunh! And this blog linking mine is in the same, unintelligible language. And that’s not all. There are 2 other blogs linking to me, boosting my viewer visits. It’s really nifty– and it’s all about the tee-bags that my oldest DS is selling at the Farmer’s Market!

After 2 hours of blog detecting, I figured out that:

  1. The foreign blogs are from Estonia.
  2. There are no Estonia-English online translators. At least, there were none that were working yesterday morning.
  3. DS1 now thinks he’s famous.

And is that all to this unusual day? Oh no! I find out that I am a day late and a dollar short two times over.  Not only have I missed witnessing the Perseid meteor shower by one day, but I didn’t see my own personal shot at the sun:  my hand dyed fabric was featured on the FRONT PAGE of Etsy! I missed it!  By one day!

I admit that I am not very conversant in the byways and highways of Etsy, so I didn’t know to check this kind of happening. I got a nice note from Monica, congratulating me on making the front page with one of my hand-dyed fabrics!

It was a gorgeous page (which expired this morning, so unfortunately I can’t show you), and I thank you again for putting me in such beauteous company! I’ve uploaded quite a bit more fabric:

including several 4 yard lengths that will make gorgeous, traffic-stopping wholecloth Wild Onion Jackets.

I’m just saying. In case someone in Estonia wants to blog about jackets.


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Tee bags: a tutorial to recycle a tee shirt into a shopping bag

Tee-bags is the name of my 10 year old’s new business. A tee-bag is a tee shirt, recycled (and washed in hot water!) into a reusable shopping bag! He has granted me permission to offer a free tutorial on how he creates shopping bags using t-shirts!

Since his dad (my DH) owns E-cycle Group, a green business recycling printer cartridges, DS1 is very excited to follow in his dad’s green footsteps with his own recycling business. Not only is he preventing the tee’s from becoming landfill, he is also providing an alternative to the age old question, paper or plastic!

A bonus is that the bags are machine washable, which is a nice option to have when you go to the farmer’s market and get bits of lettuce and onion skins in the bag! The tee-bags also fold up to stuff into your purse or glove compartment–so they are convenient to use, which is a key component to making recycling part of your lifestyle.  For more tips on recycling and environmentally friendly choices, visit the eCycle Group Cafe blog!

He was able to obtain free tee shirts from our local Freecycle organization (note: Freecycle is an entirely nonprofit movement of people who are giving and getting stuff for free in their own towns. It’s all about reuse and keeping good stuff out of landfills) He was also able to pick up unsold tee shirts from a local rummage sale.

After a quick lesson on my serger, he was able to whip out some bags. His BFF worked on the marketing end, providing a beautiful poster, as well as rigging up a wagon for a portable display. Their proceeds go towards a 6th grade (next autumn) field trip.
This morning, I took the boys to the local Farmer’s Market, to test the waters. They sold out within one hour!! The boys are really excited, and are already back at work in my studio, getting Tee-bags ready for next week!
Here’s a quick tutorial for making your own tee-bags:
(DS1 says to tell you that first, wash the tee in hot water, to get rid of any germs.)

Turn the tee shirt inside out, line up the bottom hem, and sew or serge the bottom edge together, just above the tee shirt hem.

Line up the sleeves seams and cut off the tee shirt sleeves. It works best to cut off the sleeve seams!

With the shirt still flat, cut out the neck: cut close to the neck ribbing at the sides of the neck

then cut a “scoop neckline” including the back of the tee shirt in the scoop.

Here’s what it looks like when all the pieces are cut off. Knit jersey (tee shirt fabric) doesn’t fray, so you don’t have to hem any of the cut edges!

Turn the bag right side out, and go shopping!


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