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30 DIY Old Clothes Ideas

Upcycle the clothes you no longer wear into easy DIY crafts

Updated June 04, 2018
30 DIY Old Clothes Ideas

These 30 DIY old clothes ideas will help you clean out your closet or donation box to create wonderful upcycled crafts.

Is your closet overflowing with clothes you haven't worn in years? Are you clinging to that pair of pants that you've never worn but swear you will someday? Try one of our helpful tutorials to clear the clutter and make the most of your old clothing items. These tutorials will teach you how to upcycle denim, T-shirts, sweaters, and more!

If you're an experience upcycler or a beginner looking for new re-purposing projects, we have a solution. Most of these projects can be completed with materials found solely in your closet and fabric bin. This thrifty and nifty guide converts your old clothes into new practical items without putting a dent in your budget.

T-Shirts

Are you trying to find a use for one (or dozens) of the old shirts at the back of your closet? These upcycled T-shirt crafts provide six unique takes on one clothing item! Go through your donation stack and try some of these DIY tutorials on your old T-shirts!

Stylish No-Sew T-Shirt Bag

If you don't sew, you can still make your own cloth grocery bag by upcycling an old T-shirt! This recycled bag will hold groceries, library books, and towels for the pool. Make your own cloth bag and do your shopping in style!

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Stylish No-Sew T-Shirt Bag

DIY No-Sew Infinity Scarf

Turn your T-shirts into elegant infinity scarves with this tutorial! This no-sew accessory is a creative way to fashion your old garments into chic accent pieces for any outfit.

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DIY No-Sew Infinity Scarf

Easy T-Shirt to Skirt Refashion

Do you have a shirt but are in need of a skirt? This refashion tutorial will transform your old T-shirt into a trendy skirt. You won't have to spend more money on clothes as your cute shirt will become your adorable new skirt.

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Easy T-Shirt to Skirt Refashion

How to Make a T-Shirt Quilt

T-shirt quilts are all the rage! Create your own memory quilt with shirts you have around the house. This quilt is a great gift for a college student or family member. You can add insulation to make a nice bedspread or leave it out to create a unique picnic blanket.

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How to Make a T-Shirt Quilt

DIY Recycled Holiday Decoration

This upcycling idea is perfect for the holidays! Re-purpose T-shirts into snowflake ornaments that will dazzle on your tree. This project can be re-purposed again into gift bows, so you'll get two uses out of one DIY craft.

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DIY Recycled Holiday Decoration

T-Shirt Pillow Idea

Decor items that match your interests and personality can be hard to find without paying for a custom order. This DIY T-shirt pillow transitions any shirt into a decorative pillow for your home. Whether you have a shirt from a concert, a souvenir from a trip, or a graphic tee of your interests, you can have your own custom pillow in under an hour.

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T-Shirt Pillow Idea

Sweaters

Do you have an old sweater that's seen better days? These upcycled sweater tutorials will make the most of your old winter clothing. You can even make multiple projects out of one sweater! Grab your cold-weather cardigan and make these projects today.

Easy DIY Wool Dryer Balls

Do you want to reduce the time it takes your clothes to dry while softening them? Try these DIY wool dryer balls. Upcycle a wool sweater to create this lovely laundry hack. These dryer balls can reduce drying time and static cling while they make your clothes extra soft. What's not to love?

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Easy DIY Wool Dryer Balls

10-Minute Sweater Mittens

This creative sweater projet will turn your warm, wool apparel into mittens for a cold day. This sewing project is perfect for a sweater that is starting to wear through but you can't bear to part with. You'll re-purpose the salvageable areas in just ten minutes!

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10-Minute Sweater Mittens

15-Minute DIY Wine Gift Bag

Turn your wine gift into an elegant surprise with this wine gift bag made from a sweater. This beginner sewing project will transform an old sweater into a chic and stylish wine bag, and you don't even need a sewing machine to complete it!

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15-Minute DIY Wine Gift Bag

Easy DIY Sweater Pillow

If your favorite sweater doesn't fit the way it used to, create a decorative throw pillow with it! This tutorial will make a comfy cushion that you'll love to cuddle up with in your reading nook or on your sofa.

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Easy DIY Sweater Pillow

5-Minute Upcycled Sweater Flowers

These sweater flowers are the perfect decorative addition to any item. By re-purposing part of a sweater, you can create a handful of these decorative wonders! The hardest part will be deciding where not to put them.

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5-Minute Upcycled Sweater Flowers

Upcycled Desk Organizers from Sweaters

These sweater organizers add flair to your desk encouraging fun and creativity in your work space. You'll love seeing these bright storage containers and will always put your supplies where they belong to admire your homemade supply holders.

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Upcycled Desk Organizers from Sweaters

Re-Purposed Sweater Christmas Trees

This Christmas craft costs very little to create and will adorn your mantle during the holidays for years to come! This project re-purposes sweaters and cardboard tubes to decorate your home with holiday spirit.

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Re-Purposed Sweater Christmas Trees

How to Make a Sweater Headband

Learn how to make a sweater headband with this video tutorial. Follow the step-by-step instructions to upcycle your sweater into a decorative hair accessory.

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How to Make a Sweater Headband

Denim

Everyone has a pair of jeans that they tell themselves they will wear one day but ultimately never do. These upcycled denim projects will revamp those old jeans into a variety of fun crafts! Try these denim ideas and convert the will-never-wear jeans into will-always-cherish projects!

DIY Garden Apron from Old Jeans

This garden apron will keep all of your gardening tools handy when outdoors! Your old jeans will be altered into a pocketed apron that holds your equipment and gives you a surface to wipe your soily hands, so you don't have to ruin your new pants.

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DIY Garden Apron from Old Jeans

Denim Placemats

You won't have to spend a dime for these country chic denim placemats. Refashion a few pair of jeans to create a variety of patterns in your placemats. These will go with any rustic or country decor and will shine in a rural dinner party.

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Denim Placemats

Denim Flower Corsage

This homemade corsage is a fashionable way to transform old denim. This jean flower makes a wonderful gift or brooch to pin on your favorite jacket. Add beading to the top for a polished look or leave it off for a rustic charm.

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Denim Flower Corsage

How to Make Coasters from Upcycled Denim

This upcycled jean tutorial includes both video and handwritten step-by-step instructions to fashion your own denim coasters. The coasters feature a cotton batting to absorb moisture and a decorative edge to upscale these jean legs.

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How to Make Coasters from Upcycled Denim

Upcycled Denim Hexagons Rug

Do you have an entire stack of jeans with different wash patterns? Then this project is for you. This hexagonal denim rug will provide an interior doormat or kitchen rug that adds a unique pattern to its practicality. This geometric gem will instantly make your kitchen floor pop.

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Upcycled Denim Hexagons Rug

Upcycled Denim Tote Bag

This everyday bag is an easy sewing pattern made from upcycled materials. The exterior of the bag adapts a denim jacket or pair of jeans while the interior re-purposes a bed sheet or cloth lining. Your handbag will be trendy and modern, and you can make it without spending a cent!

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Upcycled Denim Tote Bag

Denim Pockets DIY Organizer

This organizer fits on the back of your door and will store a ton of smaller items. This organizer takes the pockets from many pairs of jeans to be used as storage pouches. Use the pockets for this project and the rest of your jeans for some other thrifty denim ideas!

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Denim Pockets DIY Organizer

Recycled Denim Dog Toy

Dog toys face a lot of wear and tear from your canines mouth, and if you have a particularly playful pup, the toys might not last a month. Avoid the cost of replenishing your dog's toy supply and make your own rope toys from braided denim fabric. You can fashion a few toys from each pair of jeans and save money while still treating your furry friend.

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Recycled Denim Dog Toy

The Awesome Denim Clutch

It's time to make your dream clutch. This sewing pattern creates a lined patchwork clutch that will recycle your bell-bottoms into your new favorite handbag. If you have a lot of differently washed jeans, you can create a unique bag with a striking pattern and practical use.

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The Awesome Denim Clutch

Jean Pocket Pot Holder

These pot holders will fit into your country chic kitchen decor. This easy pattern requires materials you already own and produces pot holders for any kitchen. You'll keep your hands and countertops safe with these stylish pocketed pot holders!

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Jean Pocket Pot Holder

Denim Fabric Basket Tutorial

This denim basket will keep your items organized with an easy sewing pattern. The pattern includes directions for three different basket sizes to keep your work space tidy no matter how small your items. Make these baskets with two recycled materials and start storing in style.

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Denim Fabric Basket Tutorial

Blue Jean Dorm Seating

This DIY denim pouf is a seating solution for small living spaces. This versatile pouf requires about six pairs of jeans but yields a durable pouf that can be used as floor seating, a foot stool, or back pillow. This project can be gifted to a college student as it will be great for a small dorm.

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Blue Jean Dorm Seating

Miscellaneous

Do you have clothing that you want to upcycle that may not fit one of the above categories? Try these versatile projects and re-purpose away!

Scarf to Skirt Easy Upcycling Idea

Are you in need of a new summer skirt? Make your own maxi skirt by refashioning a single scarf. This maxi skirt pattern is simple and only takes half an hour. You'll have a new favorite summer dress without making a purchase.

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Scarf to Skirt Easy Upcycling Idea

Floral Scarf from Dress

If you are having the opposite problem as the project above, try turning a floral dress into a scarf! Get a second use out of your old dress and make a summery floral scarf. This easy pattern provides an accent piece for any summer outfit.

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Floral Scarf from Dress

From Shirt Sleeve to Shoulder Bag

Create an everyday shoulder bag from the fabric that was once on your shoulder! This shirt sleeve bag pattern will transform any shirt into a chic accessory that is as durable as the fabric you used to make it.

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From Shirt Sleeve to Shoulder Bag

Upcycled Scarf DIY Bracelet

These scarf bracelets are as versatile as DIY projects come. Pick any scarf (or scarf sized fabric) and fashion your own custom accessories. Whether silky, sturdy, plained, or patterned, these homemade bracelets will accentuate any outfit!

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Upcycled Scarf DIY Bracelet

What's your favorite way to re-purpose old clothing items?

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I probably reuse old shirts, pillows and dresses but not sweaters. I love that you can turn your old denim pants into a cool new bag, I see many people do that all the time and it's amazing. Upcyling is easy and fast, it depends on what you want and what you have and some cool new tutorial like in this list.

We all have clothes we just don't like or wear anymore. Rather than just keep them we can use the ideas in this articles to clean out our closets.

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