It’s August, is it? The calendar is once again running roughshod over me. It seemed like July was never-ending, but now we are already well into August somehow.

Here’s another shocking realization that slapped me in the face today. Everyone in the house is now at least 48″ tall…thereby qualifying for full-price amusement park tickets:


What?! Mind you, it’s not the extra money that bothers me. It’s that the child is well into 48″. To have taken advantage of height cost savings, we should have been at the park at least three years ago, maybe four. Which I think we were, but above 48″ seemed so far into the future at that point.

Soon we’ll lose kids meal privileges too, I suppose. Which is probably just as well. At least there’s no age or height limit to Happy Meals…although we don’t buy those. But I do buy the toys from time to time. Cuz you can’t beat a Madame Alexander Wizard of Oz Flying Monkey toy….

Well, you saw some of the shirts for the Reclaimed/Recycled Clothing Quilt-along the other day. I have to say, “breaking down” shirts is somewhat satisfying. Although I think the people at tennis lessons might have been a tad nervous about the lady sitting in her car waving around some long scissors.

Yesterday, I started sewing. My favorite shirt of the bunch did not disappoint:



I made four large blocks from the back of the shirt.

Here are some of the others:




So far, I have only cut into the backs of shirts. First I cut the required strip size, starting with the largest size first. Then I cut what I can from any odd shaped pieces or narrower strips. I’m using this handy tool:

comp angle

I’m also starching the shirt piece before I cut it. Better to have the fabric a little crispy when trying to cut straight stripes. I’ve also learned I need to “read” some of the stripes better before cutting strips — in some cases, I can trim off a little and thereby get a strip that is an exact match to a previous strip (this makes it easier to match up triangles later). But it will be fun to add in squares that are a little off or made up of oddball triangles (I am telling myself it will be fun…).

I thought I needed some more medium value blocks, so we made a quick stop at another local thrift store (much more reasonably priced than most of last week’s shirts):


Sadly, I left behind a nice shirt that had Snoopy on the pocket. I’m here to tell you that if you are inclined to want to make a shirt stripe quilt, there is NO shortage of blue/white striped shirts out there.

See, even dear daughter’s top is part of the stripey scene over here:


There are other great ideas in the book for using up any shirt stripe leftovers:


This is one of my favorite Kaffe and Liza books (not that I don’t love them all) — rice bowls, hat boxes, dots, stripes. Rife with inspiration.

I’m so glad Anita suggested this quilt-along!! Thanks, Anita!

Oh, one last thing. Anyone else extremely excited about something like this in their email box:


I am!

No sewing tomorrow; we’ll be riding rides and amusing ourselves with amusement park food!


  1. MichelleB said

    Your blocks are looking fabulous! I must go find some nice striped shirts. I’m also waiting on my Kaffe book, too. And yes, I was EXTREMELY excited to find that email in my box. I’ll be more excited with the fabric package shows up!

    And will. you. STOP. being such a temptress? Those rings are definitely on my must have list.

  2. Perfect way to use those shirts. I was wondering what you were going to do with them. At first I thought, ick, old smelly men shirts. Now I see! I should have known you would come up with something wonderful!

  3. kathy doughty said

    MEMORY LANE!!!!!!!! Cedar Point always meant summer to me. I nearly burst into tears when I saw the tickets. I used to love the ride that headed out over Lake Erie and then the wheels turned but the bucket didn’t at first…I can still feel my stomache turn. AND the day after Senior Prom we went….oh dear. Love the shirts and you are doing a great job with them and matching all those stripes. thanks, k

  4. Stephanie said

    WOWZER on the striped shirt blocks. Does sewing the stripes make you dizzy….or is that just the rides at Cedar Point? Happy my kinds aren’t interest in Cedar Point any more. My son had black and white striped sheets when he was little and I had to make the bed with my eyes closed or else I felt sick. I love that Kaffe book. I just bought the Garden Path Kaffe book and thought THAT was the new one but no…I find out there is a newer NEW one. I can’t keep up.

  5. pam said

    Ahh kids meals. Well let me tell you Frankie was asked if she wanted a childs menu once when she was 18. I’m not sure that I can express her displeasure with this. Its afamily blog. She still often gets asked for movies etc.. even though now she’s almost 22! She hates it, but will be grateful later in life.

  6. Di said

    Your blocks are looking good – you have found some great shirts.
    Good luck with your quilt – it is fun to make.

  7. Nancy said

    wow–i luv those blocks. it’s so amazing what people are doing with recycling clothes. the simple blocks look complicated because of the striping. lovely.

  8. Lisa said

    They look great! love the one with the big stripes!

  9. Anita said

    LOVE, love your shirts!!! That Kaffe book is my favorite too. And, I’m glad to hear that prices were more reasonable on the 2nd run to the Goodwill. It always amazes me how the prices are not always that cheap.

  10. krommama said

    showoff! i mean, what beautiful blocks! and you left snoopy?! can’t wait to see what you do with all your stripey goodness!

  11. jmbmommy said

    Ahhh, your taste, as always is so spot on. One of my fav books…love the stripes and the adventure of cutting up shirts. I have a pile that I keep adding to for that “day”. Sometimes I buy really fanciful colored striped shirts in the hopes that my husband won’t like them and I can cut them up, but then he really likes those the best. I guess I will just get them after he stinks up the armpits…hee hee.

  12. amy smart said

    OH wow! These blocks are fantastic! I love that pile of stripes too. I can’t wait to see more!

  13. Oh, I KNEW I would love this quilt the minute I was it! I’m goig to hit the resale stores this week and see what I can find!

  14. I am amazed at how perfectly you have lined up those stripes! I’ve been following some others who are making this quilt, and it is going to be just fabulous.

  15. lily boot said

    ooooh Amy – you’re almost inspiring me to go out and thrift me some shirts! Your blocks are looking fabulous – so eye wobbling! I empathise on the height business – i had to let Abby’s school dresses down by 3 inches, just so they would reach her knees. Oy!

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