I first learned to sew a little in Home Economics class, where I was taught to sew and cook. I made a simplistic tea towel, and an oven mitt, but nothing major. Still, I remember wanting a sewing machine just like the one I used at school. I finally got a sewing machine but I still remember how I felt when I didn’t have one. If you don’t have a sewing machine, or even any needle or thread, you can still make a cool t-shirt. Choose one of the no-sew tees here and you’ll have more fun than the people who have sewing machines!
There is more than one way to make a tee without sewing. One way is to use an old t-shirt as a pattern. Cut the back and the front of the shirt, outlining the sleeves at the same time, rather than cutting the sleeves separately. You should end up with two pieces: the front of the shirt and sleeves, and the back of the shirt and sleeves.
Along the shoulder seams, poke small holes in the fabric, an inch or so away from the cut edge. To create a more finished look fold the cut edges under before poking the holes. Use a ribbon or spaghetti straps to thread through the holes and “sew” up the shoulder seams. Do the same thing to sew from the underside of the sleeve, up to the underarm, and down to the “hem”.
Make a no-sew t-shirt in a slightly different manner and you create something of a fringe along the edges of the shirt. Start by laying out the fabric to cut the front of the shirt, as well as the front of the sleeves. You’ll create a separate piece – but in the same way – to make the back of the shirt and back of the sleeves. As you cut the fabric, cut “tabs”, and these will help you tie the front to the back. The tabs should be at least three inches long, each.
Cut one tab at the hem area when you first start cutting the front piece. Cut about a half-inch up, then make another tab, and continue to do this. When you cut the back of the shirt make sure you cut the same amount of tabs, and in the same exact areas, so that your shirt won’t look lopsided. Lay the front of the shirt – with its tabs – on the back of the shirt. Tie the tabs together to connect the two pieces.
Making your own clothing is fun but, when you don’t have a sewing machine, it can be nearly impossible. That’s why either of these no-sew versions are perfect for those who want to sew but have no way.