T-Shirt Refashion: Jersey Necklace


Sometimes I feel like I ride on the coattails of creative people.

Back in January as I was surfing my favorite blogs, I came across this post on Ultra Vroom about cardigans and fabric necklaces. I instantly fell in love and had to have a fabric necklace for my very own. I week or so later I remembered the large stash of white jersey hanging around the basement and hap-hazardly made my own version of Annie‘s fabric necklace.

If I remember correctly, I wore that necklace for 4 days in a row. I didn’t really take it off until Penelope bumped her mouth on the table and bled all over me (Penelope is ok, BTW). It was with much sorrow that I parted with the necklace long enough to launder it.

I love my necklace so much, I’ve been wanting to share it with you for sometime, but haven’t worked on the tutorial until just now. Here it is! I hope you like it.


  • 1 XXL or XXXL men’s t-shirt
  • Scissors and/or rotary cutter
  • Sewing machine and or needle & thread

Cut off the bottom hem of the shirt. Cut 9 2-inch strips out of the shirt.

Cut open one end of each strip. Stretch the jersey through your hands to allow the fabric to curl inside itself. Group strips into threes.

Sew coiled ends together. Secure the end to a stationary object (like a couch) with a safety pin. Start braiding. I find that a tight braid looks nice, but avoid pulling and stretching the fabric.

Once finished braiding, sew ends together to make three separate rings of fabric.

Cut a 5 x 7 inch square of fabric from the remainder of the shirt, fold it over the three braids and sew. Sew the tube as close to the braids as possible for a snug fit. Trim excess fabric. Turn right side out.

Voila! Your necklace is complete. Twist, and double over and you’re ready to rock and roll!

If you twist the loop twice before doubling over, the necklace looks like this (above).

Twist the necklace once before doubling over and pull some loops longer to have a cowl neckline (above).

So there you have it, in less than 15 minutes you can have a really rad fabric necklace ’round your neck. Hope you give it a try! Happy Weekend, All!

P.S. You might want to check out Annie’s etsy shoppe: Annily Green.

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    1. annie says:

      i love that you used t-shirts, and those colors are so great! i’m also so glad to see that someone else loved my idea as much as i did. i want to wear these things every day!

    2. sara says:

      good morning Melissa! I read your blog and I added you on my list of favourite blogs. And… this morning… surprise!! You and me have posted the same subject! I like refashion and I’ll try to make your necklace. If you like to see my basket, you’re welcome

    3. cori rowley says:

      I just love these sorts of things! Can’t wait to make one, or six of my own! I recently did a blog post of a scarf/necklace I made – you might enjoy it! http://corirowley.blogspot.com/2010/03/scarf-necklace.html

      Best wishes.

    4. Megan Taylor says:

      I just made a dark red one, turned out great! Thanks for the super easy to follow instructions. I can’t wait to wear mine!

    5. Rachel says:

      Those are so, so pretty! I love this! Thanks so much for sharing, I’ll be linking.

    6. Jenn says:

      Lucky for me, my sister was going through her closet this weekend and happened to have a lot of nice jersey knit stuff – if only we were bigger and had enough fabric on our shirts to make long enough chains. HOWEVER! She had an old jersey knit pillow case (in brown) so i cut that up and made this. I’ll upload a pic to the flikr group so you can see it.

    7. onjewels says:

      Excellent tutorial! Thanks so much for sharing , I am sure our readers will love this, so I am linking to it from CraftGossip later this week. Thanks again – Kate

    8. […] also nominated Melissa’s ingenious and recycled (!) t-shirt necklaces – how cool are they? How clever are […]

    9. Mary Ellen says:

      I’m loving this! Found you via whip-up.

    10. […] getting ready for summer and getting out your t-shirts, if any are a little past their best days, here is a wonderful idea for what to do with […]

    11. […] followed this tutorial by is*ly.  I think however that she used a woman’s large shirt. I used a men’s and my […]

    12. orit says:

      So COOL!! will be nice as bracelet as well.

    13. […] I found this adorable tutorial online for a braided scarf.  When I first saw the pic I thought what a cute bracelet it’d make.  So that’s what I did.  Here’s the pic of the scarf and a link to the tutorial over at ISLY.  http://melissaesplin.com/home/2010/03/t-shirt-refashion-jersey-necklace/ […]

    14. […] Broche fleur, par Erika Kern |2 – Collier récup, par Is Ly | 3 – Boucles en chutes, par Ginger, Boo and Pickles | 4 –  Collier en chutes, […]

    15. gragegrl says:

      Thank you!!! I found this at just the right time, exactly what I was looking for, those loopy necklaces were just a little too messy looking. I’ve made two of these so far, here’s a link- http://www.flickr.com/photos/brantlea/4667956465/

    16. Dude! What an awesome idea! This is one DIY I might actually complete.

    17. […] from Sewing Princess 3. T-Shirt Belt from This Old Dress 4. Total Shoe Redo from Grosgrain 5. Jersey Necklaces from IS-LY 6. Recycled Ruffle Tank from Craftopia 7. Scrap Bow Belt from Tilly and the Buttons […]

    18. Amber Cox says:

      Amazing!! Thanks for sharing! And thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving the sweet comment.

      I am so going to make me a couple of these necklaces!!

    19. Abby says:

      Great!! I’ve already made two of these in the last 12 hours! I did a multi strand per your instructions and then made a simpler one with just one braid. Both turned out great and I can’t wait to make more.

    20. tulkah says:

      uh….all (ALL) my t-shirts are black…uh. on the other hand, the making of the strips is very interesting. i do sailor knot work (google clifford ashley) and this might be a great way to scale up.

    21. […] lítið mál og ætti ekki að taka meira en hálftíma í framkvæmd. Hugmyndina fékk ég  hér, þ.e.a.s. að gera hálsmen úr stuttermabolum. Allt sem þarf er stór stuttermabolur, skæri og […]

    22. […] my craft room, waiting for its next reincarnation.  Thankfully, I came upon a cute jersey necklace here that inspired me to make a bracelet out of it.  I am definitely going back and making the necklace […]

    23. […] all the t-shirts for the week’s projects, we we created braided fabric necklaces using this tutorial from Melissa at ISLY.  It’s simple, fun and super […]

    24. […] t-shirtlerden ip yaparak saç band? boyunluk vs yap?m?.resimli anlar?m? var. Yazar Ekim 3, 2010. by admin. Kategorisi Genel. Etiketleri . Bu yaziyi sevdim? Twitter […]

    25. […] T-shirt necklace by Melissa Esplin at ISLY. Sometimes it’s not enough to deck the halls or trim the tree–you need to deck yourself […]

    26. Marianne says:

      I was looking for a tutorial to make braids for straps for a dress for my daughter out of an old jersey tank top for my daughter. Thank you! It looks super easy and is just what I wanted :-)

    27. […] used the directions from this site. I now want one in every color and I want to experiment with patterned fabric. Categories […]

    28. meredith says:

      love it! i made it as a bracelet, though!

    29. Broken Buddha's House says:

      Wow! This tutorial is great! Those necklaces look so cool. i am going to try and go make one for my self now!

    30. […] obrobo ovratnika spredaj z malo kitko (jersey kitke so mi blazno vše?. nekega dne bo naredila tudi tole). Ker sem se kot že milionkrat omenjeno v zadnjem letu precej zredila in je majica morda maaalo […]

    31. […] I made from cutting of the hem of a stained dress (to make it into a shirt and following this tutorial. Waste not, want not you […]

    32. Kat says:

      I’m so excited! This is one of the DIY projects that I’m going to attempt myself and review. I hope I can do it justice, I have your blog linked on my site. :)

    33. Virginia says:

      LOVE it! =) I really like your color choices too!

    34. Adriana C says:

      Wow, I just made my necklace and it looks great and it took me almost no time. It is soooo easy to make!! :) I think this will be great for some presents I have to give!! Thnx!

    35. tatiana says:

      wow !!! amazing !! what a great DIY prject : beautiful, original and easy !! thank you so much for explaining it so clearly !! Can’t wait to do it !

    36. Elizabeth Mize says:

      LOVE this. Made it and get so many compliments. I just used a jersey cotton pillow case that was on it’s way to Goodwill before I saved it ^_^

    37. Karena says:

      Such a super idea and it looks so great!! Thanks for posting the tutorial for us!!

      Art by Karena

    38. Fantastic. I am definitely going to try this. Thanks a lot for sharing.


    39. […] came from this blog, melissaesplin.com, and you can click here to see her […]

    40. […] to make t-shirt yarn and other projects to make with them including coasters, rugs, a placemat, a necklace and other headbands. Also you can crochet with t-shirt yarn! I don’t know how to crochet, but […]

    41. Mercy says:

      muchas gracias por lo ensenado para hacer el collar con tela la explicacion fantastica,muchos exitos desearia que me estuvieran al tanto de lo que ensenan.Mercy

    42. […] You could just make layered scarves or braid them into more necklaces. […]

    43. Iris says:

      I love this idea!! I’m going to try it with shirts with different colors. Or some old shirts I have with little rhinestones. I think it’d be perfect. Thanks!!

    44. […] of time on this site.  I have so many new ideas for my next piece (and I’m making a sweet Jersey necklace, […]

    45. […] finally, from I Still Love You a sweet braided necklace made from old cotton jersey t-shirts. Perfect punch of color to the […]

    46. […] som har gjort dette har kalt det T-Shirt Refashion: Jersey Necklace, kult navn på en kul […]

    47. Sandra says:

      Hi :) I absolutely LOVE this idèa! I am going to try this out as soon as I get a chance! I featured this idèa on my blog and linked back to your blog! :)I will also add your blog button on my sidebar! Thank you! :)

    48. vanina says:

      love this. thanks for sharing!

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