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Over a Dozen Ways to Rock an Old Tee for the Holidays

Holiday dressing can stress you out. On the one hand, you want to look your best. On the other, you’ve just spent all your coins on presents for other people. Rather than panic and shop and cause your credit cards to spontaneously combust, why not try a little recycling?

It’s time to get a little crafty with your wardrobe.

T-shirt restyling is something I do with my girls all year round. Here’s a no sew scarf I gifted a few people with last year. It’s so satisfying to make something from nothing and at the holiday season, it’s doubly so. New clothes from old ones = win!

Note: if you are really good at upcycling old tees, you might be able to gift some of your creations, and save cash for accessories which can really take an upcycled tee from blah to wow!

Ready to craft? There are over a dozen fab tutorials to dress up your wardrobe this holiday season, without spending a dime,  after the jump.

Some supplies to have on hand before you attempt to make these:

  • old tees
  • chalk
  • ruler
  • pins
  • needle and thread and/or sewing machine
  • scissors and/or rotary cutter
  • buttons, pins, lace, ribbon and other crafty embellishments
  • bleach and /or paint


  • The Cute Shrug 1 of 13
    The Cute Shrug
    What a cute shrug from Wobisobi! This would be prefect over a little dress or paired with a maxi skirt. Try making the tie from a patterned silk fabric and leaving long ends for a bohemian effect.
  • Crochet on the Side 2 of 13
    Crochet on the Side
    I love this crochet trimmed idea from Trash to Couture. It's a little edgy and easy to dress up or down, depending on the tee and style of crochet work used.
  • Ruffled 3 of 13
    Ruffled
    This could be casual with jeans or more formal with a skirt. For a more formal effect try using a thinner, silkier fabric, or lace. Just stick with the same tone. Embellish with a rhinestone button. Tutorial from All Things Heart and Home
  • Easy Braid 4 of 13
    Easy Braid
    Believe it or not this braided neck tee from Her New Leaf requires little to no sewing. It would be chic along the top of a long sleeved, loose tunic tee, paired with leggings & boots. I'd do braids along the wrists as well for a finished look.
  • Bow Style 5 of 13
    Bow Style
    Here is a relatively simple tutorial that requires only a bit of sewing to make the bow. Tutorial from Sweet Verbena. Pay attention to the fabric used for the bow as it's really the star of the show here.
  • Love This Actually 6 of 13
    Love This Actually
    This bleach heart tee is perfect for a more casual look say for a dinner with family or old friends. Here's the tutorial fromLook What I Made
  • Ruffle Butt 7 of 13
    Ruffle Butt
    Make your old tops into new bottoms with this ruffled skirt tutorial from Analog Me . Would look great with multicolored ruffles for a child as well.
  • Tube Top With Possibilities 8 of 13
    Tube Top With Possibilities
    Dress up this sexy tee shirt-to-tube-top from Instructables with sparkly jewelry for a casual New Years Eve party or dinner.
  • Tee Shirt Ball Gown? 9 of 13
    Tee Shirt Ball Gown?
    Sadly no tutorial but if you are super crafty perhaps you can create a ballgown from old tees like designer Angela Johnson. These tees were featured on Clothesmonaut. I'm not sure about all the colors used here but I think this idea has possibilities...
  • Pouf There it Is 10 of 13
    Pouf There it Is
    Even your tattiest tee can be pressed into service for holiday wear. Perhaps you'll use this to dress up the tube top. The instructions are from Prudent Baby and they are really easy to follow and don't require too many special skills for the non crafters.
  • One Shoulder Affair 11 of 13
    One Shoulder Affair
    This one shoulder ruffle tee has definite party potential. Tutorial from PS I Made This
  • Simple Scarf 12 of 13
    Simple Scarf
    This is the world's easiest made-from-a-tee project. Whole Living by Martha Stewart Embellish with paint or bleach splatter, attach pins, buttons and charms or enjoy simple as is.
  • Stripey 13 of 13
    Stripey
    Another tee to skirt tutorial to try from Cotton and Curls. This would look great with a sparkly sequined top.

A big thanks to Target for sponsoring this campaign. Click here to see more of the discussion.   

More from me:

Cinderella Themed Disney Princess Menorah

Wacky Disney Park Family Traditions

How to Take Great Holiday Card Photos
More Casa de Chaos adventures:

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