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Old white t-shirts: they accumulate with no explanation. And somehow after several donation bags to Goodwill, they still manage to surface. It’s like my closet has some kind of Mary Poppins-esque hole where my ex-boyfriend’s undershirts secretly multiply in the dark. How the heck are they still in my house?

uses for old t-shirts

In an attempt to make something out of what seems a never-ending and unwanted supply (as in, they are mostly undershirts and I’ve returned quite a few, but after a year post-breakup, neither of us feel the need to try to return these kinds of things), I have found two primary ways to re-use them.

1. Dusting

After numerous washings, the soft cotton is perfect for applying Pledge, oil, or polish. I just cut them up into small squares and keep them in a stack. If they get too grimy, they get tossed.

2. Applying stain

For the same multi-wash reasons, the cotton will have very little lint, so applying stain is a perfect reuse. You can do the same with old socks.

There are many other uses for old t-shirts (see here, here, and here for examples), but the next one I think I might want to try is making a few braided headbands or bracelets. Maybe not for the dingy white ones (they’re still great for rags, but maybe not my hair), but I have a drawer full of old shirts I’d like to get rid of.


What kind of repurposing projects have you been working on?

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One Comment

  1. I'm growing celery from the bottom of the last stalk I bought, in a coffee canister, lol. That sounds a little ridiculous now that I write it out.