5 Ways to Upcycle Your Unwanted T-Shirts into Underwear
5 Ways to Upcycle Your Unwanted T-Shirts into Underwear
5 Ways to Upcycle Your Unwanted T-Shirts into Underwear


Sean Kernan in Mind Cafe

5 Ways to Upcycle Your Unwanted T-Shirts into Underwear

read 3 min

Don’t know what to do with your old, unwanted t-shirts? Upcycle them into repurposed panties! I’m Francesca Fasciglione, the designer of Lovecraft Intimates, an upcycled and ethically made intimates brand! I design undergarments for the edgy & eco-friendly lovers who want to feel good while they look GREAT!

After creating a few of my most popular styles of panties from upcycled cotton t-shirts, I thought it was a MUST to express how you can turn those unwanted shirts into a new set of panties!

1. Upcycle Your T-Shirt into a Panty

Unwanted cotton t-shirts serve as the best basic panty. Take your old “lounge-around-the-house” shirts and upcycle them turning into a pair of comfy lounge-around-the-house panties! 

The EPA organization, Environmental Protection Agency, estimated the generation of textile waste in 2018 was 17 million tons. This is an extremely high number of wasted textiles that could be repurposed into many new-again products, like undergarments!

Cotton is proven to be one of the healthiest and natural fibers used to produce clothing, especially undergarments. According to Statista, cotton is the most often used natural fiber. Cotton is a breathable fiber that allows for air circulation and breathability making it a wonderful option for repurposing

2. Repurpose the Cotton

Repurpose pieces of your unwanted cotton tees into period proof panties! 

Most women DREAD that time of the month, for the fear of leakage. Crafting your vintage tops into period proof pads or panty liners is a great way to keep the cycle of the t-shirt alive. 

According to Online Nursing, on average, a woman uses 350 packages of plastic period products in her lifetime. This is a high amount of product being produced and, in consequence, a lot of plastic being wasted. 

Many big brand companies have begun switching period products to 100% organic cotton, for health concerns and decomposable features. On average, most sanitary pads contain plastic that is not only harmful to your body but contains plastic that takes up to 800 years to decompose, according to Campaign for Safe Cosmetics. In other words, repurposing your unwanted cotton tops into your time of month panties and/or pads can eliminate this mass amount of plastic waste.

3. Repurpose the Vintage Aesthetic With Upcycling

Love the look of your vintage t-shirts but cannot find a use for them? Repurpose them into panties! Reclaim the love for your vintage tees by making them into new undies.

According to Eco-Age, vintage is the NEW luxury. The vintage market has allowed people to expand their closets and to help apply a more nostalgic feeling to modern looks. When you bring out a vintage Band T-shirt, a memory is tied to the specific time you bought your t-shirt. Maybe it was your favorite concert or your “pass me down” band love through your siblings, but your beloved vintage band tees hold a memory. To sum up, having an option to repurpose your beloved vintage tops into comfortable undies is a practical and useful way to save your t-shirts and memories.

4. Use Excess Fabric Before It Hits the Landfill

When unwanted clothing is donated, it is sifted through for resale value or disposed into massive landfills. According to Edge Fashion Intelligence, one in two people are throwing out their unwanted clothing. The result? 64% of garments produced each year will end up in a landfill. A way to reduce the amount of waste is by eliminating the amount of clothing being thrown away or donated.

T-shirts are mostly made of cotton and spandex materials. In other words, they are comfortable to wear but not so easy to decompose. Edge Fashion Intelligence, also states that it can take certain synthetic fibers (polyesters, spandex and man-made fibers) 20-200 years to decompose. The decomposition process does not include the amount of wasted water or harmful chemicals that are expelled into the atmosphere. To avoid this lengthy process of fabric decomposition, reclaiming your unwanted shirts into wearable undies is more efficient for Mother Earth (and your wallet!

5. Upcycle old undies into something new

From period panties to your go-to party panties, everyone has that favorite pair of underwear that is a wash away from falling apart. The perfect way to preserve your “favorite panty” is by incorporating pieces of vintage tees into your hole-ridden underwear. 

According to Statista, 43% of women on average purchase new panties every 6 months and can never find a perfect pair. The perfect panty hunt is a long-awaited turnaround time that can be resolved with the notion of crafting. Clipping your favorite logo or sequined trim collar to mend a hole or reinforce a match on the back or your panty can extend the life cycle of your favorite pair of knickers and serve a purpose to repurpose a vintage t-shirt.

* By Francesca Fasciglione of Lovecraft Intimates




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