Repurposing men’s shirt fabrics | Adding a hand-stitched shirt pocket

Yesterday, I showed you how to repurpose old shirts to create a placemat with a wonky quilt block complete with a pocket for holding cutlery and a napkin. Today, I’m making a second placemat repurposing men’s shirts and quilting it. The 11″ x 17″ plastic template and Clover Chaco liner chalk marker will be very handy.

Placemat made from repurposed shirt fabric with pocket



  • 2 contrasting shirt fabrics, one piece with an original pocket intact
  • 12″ x 18″ lightweight batting


  • embroidery floss using a colour to match your fabric


Let’s get started!

Placemat 2

Spray the shirt fabrics with Mary Ellen’s Best Press in the Spray and Misting Bottle, and press them with the OLISO PRO  TG1600 Pro Plus Smart Iron.

From the first shirt fabric cut 1 strip 8″ x 12″.

Cut 1 pocket section. Mine is 8″ wide, but you can change the size to accommodate the size of pocket you have. My pocket section was not going to be 12” long, so I sewed a piece of shirt fabric on an angle to the top to make the full pocket strip. Hand stitch around the pocket using a blanket stitch and embroidery floss.

Finished pocket section

From the contrasting shirt fabric cut 1 strip 2″ x 12″ and some 3″ strips for binding. Sew the 3” strips together to make 1 long strip that will go all around the entire placemat for the binding.

Batting: 12″ x 18″

Backing: 12″ x 18″

Putting it all together

Sew the 8″ strip, 2″ contrasting strip and pocket strip together.

Using an 11″ x 17″ plastic template, draw around the outside edges with a Clover Chaco liner chalk marker. These lines will be the cutting lines after the quilting is finished.

Sew strips together and mark cutting lines.

Layer the placemat top, lightweight batting and backing.

Use ODIF 505 spray adhesive on the batting to hold the 3 layers together.

Quilt as desired. I used some simple straight-line quilting for this design.

Layer backing, batting, and placemat top.

Check out my detailed guide on changing the way you make quilt binding, in one of my earlier posts on QUILTsocial. And now you have another upcycled shirt placemat!

Finished placemat with hand-stitched shirt pocket

Join me again tomorrow when I show you how to make a placemat using a simple strip-pieced technique with more repurposed shirt fabric using Template plastic, 505 Temporary Fabric Adhesive, OLFA 45 mm Ergonomic Rotary Cutter, Clover Chaco liner chalk marker, OLISO PRO  TG1600 Pro Plus Smart Iron, and  Mary Ellen’s Best Press.

This is part 3 of 5 in this series

Go back to part 2: Repurposing men’s shirt fabrics | Wonky quilt block placemat

Go to part 4: Repurposing men’s shirt fabrics | Improv strip-pieced placemat

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