By of the Journal Sentinel from jsonline.com
Workout tank: It only takes a few cuts and a few minutes to make a fun workout tank top.
Free T-shirts may be the currency of college campuses, but they’ve still got some catching up to do in the real world. T-shirts can be snagged for free at races, festivals and events all summer. The Brewers’ All-Fan Giveaways games included six T-shirt giveaway days, including one this Friday.
But no matter the price, a baggy T-shirt is a baggy T-shirt – not exactly the cutest thing to wear out of the house. With a few simple modifications, though, you can turn your too-big tee into something more attractive and wearable. Here are four ways to reinvent your T-shirts.
Note: Be sure to try on your shirt as you go to ensure it will fit in the end. Use sharp scissors or scissors designated specifically for fabric.
1. KNOTTED SIDES T-SHIRT
If your shirt is way too big, this is an easy way to turn it into a more fitted tee. All you need is a pair of scissors.
First, try it on and measure how far in from each side you would like to bring the shirt. Cut off the hems from the sleeves, bottom and collar.
Turn the shirt inside out and cut a slit up each side of the shirt all the way up to the sleeves. Cut horizontal strips into the sides of the shirt, as deep as you need the shirt to be taken in on each side. The thinner you cut the strips, the more finished your shirt will look in the end. Make the strips near the underarms very small and close together to avoid huge holes in that area.
Working from top to bottom, double-knot each strip from the front of the shirt with its corresponding strip from the back of the shirt.
Ensure the knots are tight, and trim the strings to 1/2 inch. Leave the bottom five strings on each side long if you desire. Turn the shirt right-side out.
To make the sleeves on a very large shirt fit better, cut a tiny slit just below the seam at the very top of each shoulder and tie the sleeves up with a ribbon or scrap of fabric slipped through the slit.
2. WORKOUT TANK
It only takes a few cuts and a few minutes to make a fun workout tank top out of a T-shirt.
Cut the sleeves and collar off, coming in on the sleeve cuts to make about 2-inch straps. Cut the neckline into a scoop neck (as deep as you’d like) and the back of the neck into a V shape.
Cut the bottom hem off and cut a wide arc in the front of the shirt, so the front is shorter than the back. Tie the back of the sleeves together with ribbon or strips of fabric from another T-shirt project to make a racerback.
3. KNOTTED TANK
Turn any old T-shirt into a racerback tank top with knotting details. All you need are scissors and an optional needle and thread if you want a cleaner look.
First, cut the sleeves and collar off, making the neckline lower, the straps thinner and the sleeve holes deeper. In the back, cut a racerback shape, detaching the front straps completely from the back of the shirt.
From the removed sleeves, cut six Ìâ_-inch-wide loops of fabric.
Stretch out each loop so the seam bursts and you have six long fabric strings.
Stitch the ends of three strings to the each of the two front straps of the shirt (alternatively, cut strips into the straps and knot the strings on to attach without sewing).
Knot the strings together in the following pattern:
Cut the racerback so it meets at the bottom of the knotted strings and stitch the strings to the back of the T-shirt, or cut the racerback into three short strips and knot it with the strings for a no-sew alternative.
Trim the excess length of the strings and sew a strip of T-shirt around the stitching for a clean look.
Note: Since the shirt I was modifying was several sizes too large, I twisted the back before sewing it to the knotted strings in an attempt to make it fit better. I would not recommend this, as it caused the knotted pattern to twist instead of lay flat.
Finally, cut the bottom hem off the shirt, contouring the front so it’s shorter than the back.
4. BRAIDED SIDES T-SHIRT
Make a shirt that’s just a size or two too big fit a bit better by weaving a pattern into the sides and tying knots in the sleeves. It only takes 5 minutes and a pair of scissors.
Cut the bottom hem off the T-shirt. Then cut Ìâ_-inch-wide, 2-inch deep slits down the sides of the shirt. Make the first slit just below the armpit very small to avoid a huge hole there.
Starting at the top, reach down through the first loop and pull the second loop up through it; then reach down through that loop, and pull the next loop up through it. Repeat all the way down the side of shirt.
When you reach the bottom, cut the last loop and tie it around the second-to-last loop to secure it. Repeat on the other side of the shirt.
If the sleeves are too big, cut the hem off the sleeves, then cut a slit from the top of the shoulder hem to the end of the sleeve.
Tie the two pieces of the sleeve together in a small knot.
For more ideas, visit our Refashioned T-shirts Pinterest board.