I just wrote a guide for Guidespot called The Bad-Ass DIYer’s Guide to New York (pardon my French), highlighting DIY magazines like Craft and Bust, DIY books like Sew Subversive, DIY sites like Threadbanger and BurdaStyle and New York DIY events like Swap-O-Rama-Rama and Etsy’s Monday Night Craft Nights. (You want links to all of those? Click on the guide…there’s even a picture of me in a clown suit). Writing this guide planted a little DIY bug in me, so I got out my sewing machine and finally started on some mending and hemming (work BEFORE play even in crafty land).

Then, I borrowed a friend’s copy of this book, which you can buy on Powell’s, in order to “save” some of my ill-fitting, loose-fitting t-shirts. If you’re like me, you probably have too many t-shirts in your wardrobe and most of them fit in unflattering ways. They inevitably become bedtime shirts. Sports shirts tend to fall into this category, but being a football watcher and football party-goer myself, I actually need something a little more presentable, that doesn’t fit like a dude shirt.

A few years ago, I bought this vintage City of Champions shirt on ebay, but it has always been too baggy. T-shirt reconstruction time! Please turn to page 56 of the aforementioned book and get out your scissors.

You’ll have to check out the book for full instructions, but basically, I made a scoop neck by cutting across the top, trimmed the sleeves by taking them in an inch or so, cut about 2 inches off the bottom and left all edges unfinished. This was all done to shape it into a more feminine curvy cut, because it’s fun to blend that with raucous game time fun that is usually dominated by boys.

I decided to go for a laced-up the sides look by weaving black ribbon through holes. I cut two slits up the side from the bottom of the shirt all the way to the bottom of the sleeve, and trimmed away an inch and a half vertically. (Keep trying it on throughout to see how it looks).

Then with the blade of the scissors, poke holes 1 inch apart through both layers of the shirt, about 1 inch away from the edge, and do this on both sides. Do the criss-crossing thing with the ribbon and tie bows at the bottom, cutting away any excess. In hindsight, I would have measured more, but I was short on time and I think it turned out pretty cute.

What about you? Any t-shirts salvaged in creative ways? Next up for me is a corseted-inspired t-shirt, a high-necked halter, a t-shirt turned skirt and maybe even a little ruching.