Quilts Made From Football Jerseys
October 10th, 2016
By Andrea Funk
A typical football player gets two jerseys each season: a white one for home games and a colored or black one for away games. After a career of playing football, the jerseys can seem to take on a life of their own jumping out of drawers and tumbling out of closets. Rather than just let them pile up or give them away, give your jerseys new life in a quilt!
Planning Your Football Jersey Quilt
Football Jerseys Are Large
If you only use your jerseys, you may only need half the number of jerseys as you would T-shirts for a comparable size quilt. This is especially true if you plan on using the front, back and arms of your jerseys. Click here to read more about how many jerseys you may need for a quilt.
Travel vs. Home Jerseys
If you have two identical jerseys – one white and one colored, we would suggest using more of the colored jerseys rather than the white ones. This will help make your quilt more colorful. You can also decide if you want both of the jerseys in the quilt rather than just one. If you choose to use both, your quilt will be twice as large.
Names & Numbers
You may have both your name and your number on the back of your jersey. You will need to consider how many identical numbers you want to include in your quilt. Do you need 10 number 5’s? Perhaps, perhaps not. If you only want your name and not the number from a jersey, X out the number with blue painter's tape. Write a quick note on the painter’s tape saying to just use the name. Read more about how to mark what you want from your T-shirts and jerseys here.
Sleeves and Shoulders
Some of your football jerseys may have graphics and numbers on the shoulder. We would suggest you use some of these smaller blocks, especially if you don’t have other small logos. A mixture of large and small blocks lets us make a more interesting layout design for your quilt.
What to look for in a quilt maker for your jerseys.
You want to choose a quilt maker with experience transforming football jerseys into a quilt. How much experience? 100 football jersey quilts should be good. That’s not just 100 quilts, it’s 100 football jersey quilts. If someone has just made a few T-shirt quilts, they don’t have the experience and track record to trust your football jerseys to.
Uses Many Different Block Size
A traditional style T-shirt quilt only uses one block size. This is bad for football jerseys because jerseys tend to be large. And many times they are larger than the block size that a traditional quilt maker uses. If you have a graphic that is 20” x 24” and it is cut out with a block that is 14” x 14, part of your jersey will be cropped off. Yes, they will just cut off part of the design. This could be your name or your team’s name. This can be a heart breaker.
A Too Cool style T-shirt quilt is made up of various size blocks. This is good for you because some of your football jerseys many need a very large block while other jerseys many need a smaller block. This allows small and very big designs to be puzzled together into a cohesive quilt.
Don’t let a traditional T-shirt quilt maker cut off the designs on your jersey just to fit their block size. Football jerseys are expensive and should be showcased much better than that. Read more about the different T-shirt quilt styles here.
Mix and Match Fabrics
Your quilt maker should be able to mix in any other fabrics that you may have with your jerseys. So, for example, you should be able to use logos and designs off T-shirts, sweatshirts, bags, stocking hats, socks and jackets along with your jerseys. Read about what can be used in a quilt here.
Experience With Mesh Fabrics
Mesh material can be difficult to work with so many quilters will shy away from making a football jersey quilt. Some quilters won’t use mesh because they can’t iron on interfacing to make it work easily with the cotton sashing they use. Other quilters ignore that the mesh is full of holes and needs to be backed with a piece of T-shirt material. We have seen mesh fabric in T-shirts where you can see the batting in the middle of the quilt through the mesh holes. This is a huge no-no.
A quilt made from your football jerseys can a wonderful way to remember and tell the story of your football career! But be sure to do your research on quilt makers first! Read about how to interview a quilt maker here. Find a quilt maker who will make your quilt more than just cool… they should make it Too Cool!
To learn more about having a quilt made from your sports T-shirts and jerseys, download our free Athletic
T-shirt Quilt Buyer's Guide. It's a great place to learn about the different styles and quality of T-shirt quilt.
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.