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Thrifty Thursday: Upcycle Old Clothes to Save Money

There comes a time when we must cave and replace our beloved, worn-in clothes for newer pieces. But that doesn't mean we have to toss them in the donation bin or trash them. Consider the many thrifty ways you can get even more of your money's worth out of clothes that are past their prime.

Upcycle Old Clothes | Image source: / Photographer: Africa Studio

Create a Quilt

Have you had to trade in your concert tees for business suits? You don't have to part with your high school and college memories. Round them all up and stitch them into a quilt that you can warm up with or put on display!

Clean Your Space

Has it been years since your tie-dyed sock has lost its partner? Decades since you've been able to squeeze in that free shirt you scored at an expo somewhere? Skip buying pricy dusters and rags and fill your cleaning drawer with these otherwise useless articles instead! Use them for dusting, wiping up messes, cleaning windows, and more.

Dry Off

Hair experts highly suggest  squeezing your hair dry with a t-shirt (or t-shirt-like material) over a towel to prevent breakage and frizz, so keep a few in the linen closet.

Prevent Paw Prints

Keep an old t-shirt hanging on the door handle so you can wipe muddy paws off before Fido treks through the kitchen. And if your pets have a tendency to jump on furniture or the bed after an outdoor adventure (or anytime) t-shirts can easily slip over pillows to catch dirt, mud, and hair. When you're ready to use them, just pull them off an toss them in the wash!

Carry Your Groceries

T-shirts can be converted into re-usable tote bags rather quickly. Click here for a tutorial.


Old articles of clothing can be crafted into new headbands, bags, bracelets, and more!

Hang Plants

Check out this nifty way to display your hanging plants.

Redeem the Denim

Don't even get us started on the several ways you can upcycle old jeans! From ottomans to coasters and baskets to bookmarks...

Help Animals in Need

Earlier this year, we stumbled upon this heart-touching story about the need for mittens (that can be made from old t-shirts) for koalas suffering burns from summertime brushfires. While they've received all of the mittens they need for this year, you could always get a head start for next year's brushfire season. Also, reach out to your local animal shelters to find out if they're in need of old sheets, blankets, towels, pillowcases, or pet beds (which you can easily craft from old clothing!)

Snuggle Up

...In sweater crafts! Whether your sweaters have shrunk or simply gone a little out-of-style, they can still make great scarves, pillows, rugs, pet toys, and more. Click here for tutorials.

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