Essential Skills: How To Roll A T-Shirt

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Rolling shirts is something most sports professionals have to do at some point in preparation for events. (Photos via Joe Londergan)

Rolling shirts is something most sports professionals have to do at some point in preparation for events. Photos via Joe Londergan

We’ve mentioned here before that t-shirt rolling has become a sort of rite of passage for anybody aspiring to work in the sport industry. This is especially true for those on the promotions and marketing side. One thing that I’ve noticed by undertaking this task myself at many stops along the way in my career is the variety of different methods used to get shirts ready to toss out or fire out of a cannon.

Some people use tape or rubber bands to secure them after rolling them into a ball or sphere shape. The problem is that tape and rubber bands can be limited in some scenarios, along with the cost of those materials adding up over time. There’s no one right way to get the job done, but one method that I’ve learned has worked particularly well and doesn’t require the use of tape or rubber bands. I’ve gone ahead and detailed that method below.

Start by laying the shirt flat. It doesn’t matter what side is facing up.

(via Joe Londergan)

Take the bottom opening of the shirt and fold up the entire perimeter of that opening by about two inches.

(Via Joe Londergan)

Next, fold the sleeves inward like so.

(Via Joe Londergan)

Then, starting from one side, fold the shirt over three times (be careful not to disrupt the fold of the bottom opening) until you have one long shape resembling the image in the bottom right corner of the collage pictured.

(Via Joe Londergan)

Once you’ve done that, starting at the top of the shirt, either roll it tightly or fold it about 4 times until you have a compact formation resembling a cylinder.

(Via Joe Londergan)

Finally, flip that object over so that the fold from the bottom of the shirt is facing up.

(Via Joe Londergan)

Take that fold and pull it over what you have rolled up, creating a sort of pocket to tuck the rolled up shirt into. The finished product should look like this.

(Via Joe Londergan)

To test the durability of what you have just done, toss it around with a friend or coworker a few times. It should be able to withstand being thrown with at least moderate force. Like I said, there’s no definitive way to complete this task that’s become a staple of entry level sports jobs.

If you’ve picked a method that has suited you well in your jobs or internships, let us know in the comments or on Twitter and Facebook.