Andrea Funk

By: Andrea Funk on April 20th, 2017

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4 Questions to Answer Before You Buy a T-shirt Quilt

Finding a T-shirt Quilt Maker  |  How Much Do T-shirt Quilts Cost

1. What style of T-shirt quilt do you want made?

There are 5 basic types of T-shirt quilts. Know which style you want before you find your quilter.

Traditional style T-shirt quiltTraditional Block Style With Sashing 

The T-shirts are cut into uniform size blocks. Interfacing, which is a fabric stabilizer, is applied to the back of the T-shirts so they are easy to work with. All the blocks are set into columns and rows separated by fabric. This style does not reflect that T-shirt logos differ in size.

Sashed T-shirt quiltTraditional Block Style Without Sashing

This style is similar to the traditional block style, but it skips the fabric in-between the rows and columns. This style also fails to consider that T-shirt graphics come in many different sizes.

Unequal Rows or Columns 

Unequal rows t-shirt quiltsThis style compensates for different size logos by using two or three standard block widths. The designs are cut to fit one of the widths and the length is cut based on the logo. The blocks are sewn in columns of matching widths. So you would have a wide column, then a narrow column and then a wide column and so on. This style also could be made with same height rows.

crazy style t-shirt quiltCrazy Quilt

The graphics on the T-shirts are cut out willy-nilly. The blocks are then glued to one piece of fabric or a sheet. The blocks are then zigzagged down.

The Too Cool Style AKA: Variable Style

puzzle style t-shirt quiltThis style was created by Too Cool T-shirt Quilts in the early 1990’s. The blocks are all different sizes and are puzzled together. There are neither columns nor rows.  Since Too Cool T-shirt Quilts is trademarked, other companies making this style of quilt must call them something else. The most common term is “variable”.  

Planning an awesome T-shirt quilt takes research and planning.
To learn more about having a T-shirt quilt made with your T-shirts, download our T-shirt Quilt Buyers guide.

T-shirt Quilt Buying Guide

Too many T-shirts2. Do you have enough or too many T-shirts?

The quilt style you want will dictate how many T-shirts you can use. For example, if you want a quilt that is traditional block style, you simply need to count the number of blocks in a quilt of a particular size. For example, if a quilt is 3 blocks wide by 4 blocks tall, you will need just 12 logos. If your T-shirts have a design on the front and the back, you will only need 6 T-shirts. 

Whereas a method such as the Too Cool T-shirt Quilt method, the number of T-shirts needed will depend on how large a quilt you would like and size and the quantity of designs on your T-shirts. Read more about how many T-shirts are needed for one of our quilts.

3. How much are you willing to pay for your quilt?

quilting longarm.jpgUnless someone who loves you, say like your grandmother, makes you a quilt, it will not and should not be free. There is a lot that goes into a quilt. Here are the basics:

  • Time/labor
  • Backing & Binding Fabric
  • Batting
  • Thread
  • Long Arm quilting rental if the quilt is quilted
  • A new rotary cutting blade (and perhaps a Band-Aid or two)

Read here about why very inexpensive T-shirt quilt you scare you. 

More About: Cost of a T-shirt Quilt


Calendar 2.jpg4. How soon do you need your quilt?

The sooner you need your quilt, the more experienced quilter you need to employ because it takes time to make a quilt. If you or someone who has volunteered to make your quilt has to learn the entire process, it will take time. There is a learning curve. A company that has been making T-shirt quilts for over 20 years is past that initial learning curve and can work directly towards completing your quilt. 

But during graduation season and right before Christmas, the best T-shirt quilt makers will be very busy. So be sure to plan ahead!

Depending on the time of year, the industry average turn around time on a T-shirt quilt is about 4 to 6 weeks. Some companies, like Too Cool T-shirt Quilts, has the staff and flexibility to handle “quilt emergencies” and are able to complete a quilt in a day or two. Some will charge a surcharge while others will just work you in.

Planning an awesome T-shirt quilt takes research and planning.
To learn more about having a T-shirt quilt made with your T-shirts, download our T-shirt Quilt Buyers guide.

T-shirt Quilt Buying Guide

 Back to: Cost of a T-shirt Quilt 

About Andrea Funk

Andrea Funk is the inventor of T-shirt quilts made with multiple blocks sizes. The modern method of making T-shirt quilts. In 1992 she founded Too Cool T-shirt Quilts. Her life has been immersed in T-shirt quilts ever since. 


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