Oh this is a fun one friends! I am embarrassed to say I bought the shirts for this duvet cover idea almost two years ago, and I am kicking myself for not getting it done sooner. It turned out so much better than I thought it would. My favorite part is the fact that you use the button down portion of the shirts for the duvet opening – couldn’t get easier than that. I also love that it uses a $4 flat sheet as the backing. Total cost for a super cute duvet cover? Ten bucks.
I used 7 dress shirts that I picked up at a yard sale for $6 dollars. They still had the dry cleaning tag on them, so they were nice and crisp for sewing. I kept it simple by making all the blocks the same width, only varying the length for a staggered look.
Want to make one too? I have the simple how-to after the jump!
Super Simple Dress Shirt Duvet Cover
I made this duvet cover for a twin bed, and it took 7 x-large men shirts to do the job. If you are making one in a larger size you will just need more shirts. For the backing you will need a flat sheet in the same size. Walmart and Target have a great selection that you can buy individual sheets, separate from sets.
To determine the width of my pieces, I measured the blanket’s short side, added 4 inches, divided by 5, and then added a 1/2 inch. So that gave me 14 inches. For the length, I just let it be whatever the shirt would allow for. I cut from each shirt in a certain manner that allowed me to get the most form each. Here’s how it went:
- first I cut off the sleeves at the seam, they were roughly 14 x 5 inches and made the smaller panels you see
- then I cut off the side seams and the top portion of the shirts – leave the shirt buttoned up and cut a the width at 14 inches and any length you want. Make sure to center the buttons so they are a safe distance from the edge when it comes time to sew.
- Then cut one big panel from the back – 14 inches wide and as much length as you can get
- For the final cut, take all the pieces that will be used as the button panels, and layer on top of each other. Then cut the side that the button holes are on all the same length. This is the side that will match up with the sheet. You can leave the side with the buttons at varying lengths.
The idea is to get as much from the shirt as you can with the width being at least 14 inches. I had two shirts that were not a part of the top of the duvet where it buttoned up and so used them as panels on the duvet – it made for a fun look. One even still had it’s pocket, and I put it on the side to hold little treasures.
Next your going to determine your pattern so you can sew it up. I started at the top, lined up the buttons as they would be sewn to allow for the opening and then went from there.
I just made sure that the pattern was mixed and looked good to my eye. You can see how they are all different lengths, yet all the same width.
Once you have it looking the way you want, unbutton the top panel (should be the pieces with the button holes) from the panel that will be part of the body. Line up the edges and with a 1/4 seam allowance, sew the sides together one by one in the order you had layed out with the right sides together. Set this top panel aside.
Now one row at a time sew the 14 inch sides of the body together with a 1/4 inch seam allowance, right sides facing, making five rows total. Make sure to pay attention the the order so that the buttons and button holes line up the way you had layed them out.
Then sew the five rows together. To make it easier, I sewed two sides together, then the other two sides, then added the last middle panel to one of those.
I finished the seams with a serger as I went, or you could zigzag stitch, or even run the pinking shears down them.
Button the top panel to the body and now you have the top of the duvet finished! You can see the seams on the wrong side on my top panel, I wasn’t paying attention :). I had already serged, so I ended up just sewing them down to make a flat exposed seam – I’m pretending it looks cool.
Now trim off the ends on the end of the duvet to match the shortest panel on the bottom
Lay your sheet down…
…and then the duvet top and see if you need to do any trimming. You want them the same size for sewing. I had to take a little off the end and that was it.
Now with the right sides together sew all around the perimeter. Finish the seams, and then unbutton the buttons and turn right side out.
Tuck the blanket inside and secure with duvet clips if you like and then button ‘er up. Snazzie right?
I love it, and am think I need to make one for me with a bunch of vintage shirts in fun prints for a little lap blanket. Wouldn’t that be fun?
I hope you give this one a try, and if you have any questions let me know in the comments and I will answer them there!
Thanks so much for reading and sharing friends!