Publication Date

Fall 2018

Document Type

Final Report

Problem Statement

Each year, Americans waste millions of pounds of textiles in the form of clothing that is thrown away. Professor Mary Ruppert-Stroescu from the Sam Fox School of Design seeks to combat this by reusing the old fabric from discarded clothes and creating new, fashionable clothing. To do this, her and her students cut up donated shirts into small squares, by hand, using scissors and fabric cutters and sew them together using a method developed by her.. This process is very time consuming and limits the commercial viability of this process. The T-shirt Cutter design, detailed below, has the potential to significantly outpace hand cutting and make the process quicker, easier and more lucrative to potential investors. The 22-blade design can cut a single T-shirt into many ½” x ½” squares, ready to be sewn into new clothing, using Professor Ruppert-Stroescu’s method. The blades required are cheap, easy to replace and the design is built with safety of the user in mind. With a streamlined method of cutting the fabric squares, Professor Ruppert-Stroescu’s process can be applied on a much larger scale, potentially even a commercial scale, which would mean significantly less textile waste being deposited in landfills across the country.

Author's School

McKelvey School of Engineering

Author's Department

Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science

Class Name

Mechanical Engineering Design Project (MEMS 411)