Turning Something Old Into Something New — Turn an Old T-Shirt Into a Cute Vest

By Crysta Coburn

Inspired by Candice Kush, whom I visited with in the latest issue of The Crazy Wisdom Community Journal, I decided to see what I could do with an old T-shirt. I decided to start simple and go with a no-sew project. I was also afraid of ruining a beloved shirt, so I dropped by the Salvation Army on State Street in Ann Arbor and picked up a plain white T-shirt for just 99 cents! After searching online for no-sew T-shirt projects, I found a great idea for a simple vest at the WobiSobi blog. Here is what I did:

1. Fold the T-shirt in half, matching up the sleeves. With the way most T-shirts are assembled to fit on a 3-dimensional body, this is easier said than done. Using sewing pins to keep everything in place can help.

2. Cut off the sleeves and collar. The shape should resemble a sleeveless tank with a V collar rather than a rounded one.

3. Unfold the shirt. Carefully cut a straight line down the middle of the front of the shirt, making it into a vest. Feel free to reshape the “collar” at this point to make it less pointed.

4. Cut 3 strips of fabric from the sleeves. I used the cuffs of the shirt and the collar because I liked the difference in texture.

5. Flip the shirt-turned-vest over, gather the two armholes together, and use one of the ties (I used the collar for its texture) to tie the armholes together into a racerback.

6. Take the other 2 ties and tie one on each of the front sides of the vest. There are two good spots for this. At the top of the shoulders like little bows, or in the front just below collar-bone level. Both ways are cute!

Ta da! You now have a stylish new vest to layer over a tank or another T. This is a great design for a plain T-shirt, or a T-shirt with a fun design on the back. A design on the front would work, too, just remember that it is going to be cut in half, so an abstract pattern is probably best. But the choice – and there are many – is all yours!

For more fantastic DIY fashion ideas, check out the extensive collection at http://wobisobi.blogspot.com/.  

Crysta Coburn is a local author and blogger. She earned her degree in creative writing from Western Michigan University in 2005 and has been writing professionally since. Her award-winning stories can be found in various magazines and anthologies, including GlassFire Anthology, Valves and Vixens, and the upcoming Cosmic Encounters. For more information on Crysta and her writing, check out http://lifefroma2.blogspot.com/p/bio.html.

Posted on September 4, 2014 .