chal-lenge: noun a calling to account or into question

Follow along as I challenge the tricks, tips, clever craft and decorating ideas and "simple" recipes that we clip, bookmark, and "pin" for trial at a later date.

Are they really worth the effort? Time (and I) will tell!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

T-Shirt Necklace

All my April magazines featured “green” ideas for Earth Month. I feel pretty good about incorporating earth-friendly ideas into my everyday life. Although I have a way to go, I think I’m doing pretty well. I use my own tote bags for grocery shopping, I have CFL’s in all the lights that stay on for any extended period of time, I have a HE front loading washer and I wash all my laundry in cold water. I’m making a gradual switch to green cleaning products, use paper towels very sparingly and grow some of my own pesticide-free vegetables.

I have also increased the amount of “stuff” that gets recycled rather than thrown into the dumpster and am a great recycler of clothing by donating whatever I cannot use or turning them into cleaning rags. I found the t-shirt necklace featured in Body and Soul Magazine quite intriguing as a new use for old t-shirts and being in an eco-friendly state of mind, decided to give it a try.

The directions for the project are quite simple, although gathering supplies may not be. The first step for me was to find an old t-shirt. Now who doesn’t have an old t-shirt hanging around? Well, me for one. Because I donate all my unused clothing, an old t-shirt was not to be found in my drawers. After a bit of a search, I found a pink t-shirt in my daughter’s room. I hope she won’t miss it!

Next I needed to find scissors. I don’t know what it is about scissors in my house, but I can rarely find a pair when I need them. My search ended in the garage where I found my good sewing scissors covered in dry wall compound. I guess that’s my fault for leaving them out in plain sight. I washed them off as best I could but I think it’s fair to say that they are not going to be much use to me any longer. Fortunately, my mother had given me a nice rotary cutter which was ideal for the job.

Once you find your t-shirt and scissors, you are ready to start. Honestly, it took me longer to find the supplies than it did to complete the project. Cut the hem off the shirt and measure out 20, ¾ inch strips up the shirt. I used a women’s medium shirt so this measurement took me right up to the arm seam. After cutting 20 strips, hold one seam in each hand and pull. This stretches the fabric and forms the strips into little tubes. Pile all the strips together, twist them in a figure 8 and use a six inch strip of the shirt to wrap around the back to secure. It’s really that simple.

I think the end result is really pretty cute. I would suggest that if you decide to make your own necklace that you use a shirt larger than a women’s medium or make sure you put the necklace on before you apply your makeup. Otherwise, your make-up will end up on your necklace as it's a pretty tight fit going over your head.

Actually, I’m not sure I would call this project a necklace as much as a scarf. I think it has great potential as a nice summer-time scarf that can help to hide the skin of an aging neck. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wear a turtleneck all summer long.

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