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Lunch Hour Crafts #6- Braided T-shirt Headbands

August 1, 2011

Okay, I can admit it. I have a thing for headbands. I didn’t really set out to make multiple tutorials about headbands but somehow, it happened, and I’m okay with that. In addition to having a thing for headbands, I have a thing for upcycling (recycling old things into cooler, headbandy-er new things) and my brother just revealed a whole drawer of tshirts that he doesn’t want to wear anymore. Jackpot. So, expect at least a few more tshirt related posts. And hey, if you have an idea for a craft you’d like to see, especially using tshirts, let me know! Please leave comments. Even rude “those headbands give your hair muffin-top” comments. I’ll take what I can get. Hear the desperation in my voice? I even washed my hair for these pictures this time. Show me some love.

These braided t-shirt headbands are one of the first crafts to appear on this blog that has been totally created by my own imagination. Most of the time, things I make are inspired by other bloggers and tutorials, so I can’t claim much imagination in the creative process. These, however, are definitely original and I’m proud of them.

To start, you’ll need:

– a cheap jersey t-shirt. Not the nice, stretchy ones. The cheap fundraiser shirts. You know.

– sewing machine, or needle and thread.

– scissors or a rotary cutter.

First, smooth your shirt out, and cut off the bottom hem. You won’t need that, although I’m sure you could use it (maybe for a little matching rosette?).

Next, cut a one-inch “ring” of t-shirt from the bottom, all the way around the shirt. Repeat this two more times and snip straight through each so that you have three long strips of shirt, each an inch wide.

Using a rotary cutter to make "rings" of t-shirt.

My pretty pile of t-shirt strips

Knot and pin the three ends together, about an inch from the end, and begin braiding them together. You might want to pin it to something stable to hold it in place, like your jeans or a cushion.

Braid the entire length of the three strips, securing with another pin about an inch from the end.

Measure the circumference of your head. If the word “circumference” confuses you and makes you sweat a little, just remember- circumference only means the distance around something…namely, your head. Write this number down (mine is 22″). Once you know the circumference of your head, measure the doubled-over length of your braided strips (this means fold them in half- mine were 18″ and made with a large mens t-shirt), not including the one-inch edge pieces.

Measure from the fold to the pins

To find out how long you’ll need to make the connecting piece of your headband, subtract the braided strips folded measurement from the circumference of your noggin (22-18=4″) and multiply that by two (4×2=8″) cut a strip of t-shirt which is 2″ wide and the length you just calculated.

Attaching strip

Take this attaching strip, and loop it through the folded end of the braided strip (look at the pictures, it isn’t too complicated…)

Looped together

Sandwich the attaching strip around all the ends of the braided strips (make sure they’re all tucked in there!).

The headband sandwich...or headbandwich!

Pin in place, fold over the corners a bit to clean it up, and sew in a straight line from one edge of this strip to the other, securing all the braided ends.

Don’t sew over your pins, for goodness sake. Turn it around and sew over again. And again. Okay, maybe once more because you are a mighty crafter and your crafts don’t fall apart! Take it out, clip the threads and voila. You’re done.

But wait.

Embellishing. Oh, what a pretty word. You can add a fabric rosette.

You can braid in 4″ strips of other fabrics.

You can braid in ribbons strung with pearls.

The possibilities really are endless. Go and craft!

PS- All these headbands will be in the LunchHourCrafts Etsy shop later today for $4 each. What a steal!

11 Comments leave one →
  1. August 1, 2011 5:50 pm

    Nice blog Natasha! This is super cool and pretty… maybe I’ll give it a try sometime 🙂

    • August 2, 2011 10:32 pm

      Thanks! I would love to see what someone as creative as you are can do 🙂

  2. Dan Weber permalink
    August 1, 2011 10:05 pm

    Posted Comment.

  3. Dan Weber permalink
    August 2, 2011 12:48 am

    (To make up for my last “great” comment)

    This is a great idea Tash. You are extremely creative, and if I had any crafting skill and looked good with headbands (both of which you excel in) I would make one. (maybe even two)

  4. Angela Hosmar permalink
    August 3, 2011 1:05 am

    Em & I were wondering about T’shirt pillows

  5. katy permalink
    August 3, 2011 12:17 pm

    i saw a kitten in there. you should do more on that kitten, he looks like a winner.

  6. Sarah @ This Crazy Blessed Life permalink
    August 3, 2011 8:27 pm

    Thanks for linking up!! Your headbands are toooooo cute!

  7. August 9, 2011 2:14 am

    Very nice headbands! I like your embellishments!

  8. January 24, 2012 9:29 pm

    Love love love! You are funny and creative. Keep up the good work!

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