Reconstructed T-shirt Ideas

Do you reconstruct your own t-shirts? T-shirts are probably one of the most popular reconstruction projects for sewers of all levels. EVERYONE has got a t-shirt in their drawer that they don’t wear anymore, so why not put it back to good use? I know that there are many books already on t-shirt reconstruction, but, just in case you’re not one of the owners of them, I thought I’d give you a few of my favorite reconstructed t-shirt ideas.

  • Do you hang your laundry on the line to dry? When I started doing this, I had a dilema of sorts regarding where to keep my clothes pins in my reach. I opened up one of those forgotten t-shirts into a rectangle, cut slits around all sides to make strips that I could tie around the holes in the basket so my clothes pins wouldn’t fall through, and voila… new again!
  • Tube tops… now who doesn’t like a great tube top to throw over your bathing suit during the summer? This one is very simple… just cut straight across at the underarms, then hem the top. Now, if you’re wanting a tube top out of a baggy t-shirt, there are a couple of ways to go about it. First, same as above instructions but add a strip of elastic that measures slightly smaller than your pit to pit measurement and sew that into the hem (this creates a nice flowy tube that’s not too constricting). Or, you could simply start with the cutting at the underarms, then try the top on inside out and pinning it down the sides to make it fit more snuggly, sew sides and hem top. Instant summer!
  • You’re not still using plastic grocery bags are you? Well, if you’ve got those spare t-shirts on hand and are thinking of making the switch to reuseable bags, here’s your answer. Cut arms off, cut collar off and cut it down a bit longer on the back of the shirt to match the front, sew the hem (bottom) of the t-shirt together, and there you have it… reuseable bag with handles!

No matter your level of craftiness, t-shirt reconstruction is definitely attainable. Here are a few of my favorites available on Etsy just in case you’re not feeling too outrageously crafty. The first one is from Kdottie and looks to be one of the most comfortable skirts I have ever seen, and the second is from HaschenDesign; I just love the color of this one!


Mounds of Second-Hand Clothing

Wow! Jackpot!

Most of my friends and family love to be able to hand off their once loved clothing items to me, as I will often put them to great use. So, this last week I was given this fabulous treasure trove of clothing that should keep me busy for a while! Not only is this an enormously huge donation, all of the items have already produced little images in my head of what they want to become for their third-life as they are all in great shape! I’m going to have to make this family something special and useful out of their forgotten clothing 🙂

Stay tuned for the treasures to come out of this stash!

Time is sooo not on my side!

I often wonder why there was ever a song about time being on my side… hmmm…

With not a whole lot of time to create lately, I’ve been feeling a bit stressed. For me, creating my handmade items is really like therapy. I put my heart into my creations and absolutely love to marvel at the finished product! Creating makes me feel whole everytime I get to do it.

At least there’s Etsy for me to peruse while I’m at my 9 hour per day non-creative zone day job!

This is ‘pippin the crayon eater’, a plushie made by LiLMonsters on Etsy. He’s made out of a repurposed/reconstructed scarf, and apparently likes to go shopping!

No reconstructed fashion wardrobe is complete without a rockin’ pair of earings… right? These ‘recycled record vinyl flower earings’ by misscourageous on Etsy are such a great find, and a great idea! Cute and eco-friendly.

Keep creating everyone… so I can live vicariously through your work 😉

Story Behind the Reconstruction

My latest reconstructed Etsy listing, the Tie One Off Tote, has quite the story to tell…

It was an extremely hot day (we’re talking 114 degrees!) in Istanbul, Turkey about 6 years ago when I was cruising around the city deciding how to spend my 5 days there. While haggling with the vendors in the Grande Bazaar, I came to a shop that had air conditioning! I think maybe I became slightly disillusioned by this since I had been traveling all over Turkey for the last week & a half in mid-July, with no AC, because all of a sudden I thought that everything in the shop was so cool & I had to start trying on clothing to get a couple of outfits to take with me. I was backpacking throughout Europe & Turkey! What did I need with any more outfits to carry?!?! Anyways, I ended up buying 2, not 1, 2, long (long!) skirts in this shop! Needless to say, I did trek them along on the rest of my journey & they made it back to the States with me. I didn’t wear them on my trip, because it was summer after all, & I never actually wore them once I got back home either. Long skirts don’t really look good on me… again… it must have been the heat! 🙂 Oh well, the navy skirt has now turned into a fabulously upcycled tote bag that has a special place in my heart because of where it came from. Hopefully someone will love this bag as much as I do!


Trashion is essentially taking what whould otherwise be thrown in the trash & turning it into something new & fabulous again! Aside from all of the obvious benefits of keeping items out of our landfills, trashion fashion evokes a certain extra kick of creativity in the creator. Designers of trashion fashion aren’t just starting from scratch with a blank canvas, they have a unique talent to see the beauty in something that was previously tagged as disposable, ‘trash’. Here are a few great finds from my Etsy Trashion Team:

I absolutely love this wrap cuff from Tresijas! How chic would it look with a nice black dress?!?! Her Etsy store is full of great upcycled items from vinyl LP’s, I’m sure you’ll find a color to suit you!







This one I love! It’s a recycled tie pouch by kimerie. It always seems like I don’t have enough little bags or pouches everytime I go digging in my purse… voila! This one could probably help me out.




Eco-fashion, trashion, upcycled, recycled, you pick your term… they’re all fabulously gentle on the earth. Keep rockin’ it trashion creators!

Upcycle… you know you want to!

So here’s the deal with upcycling… it rocks! Upcycling is different that recycling in that instead of sending an item away to be recycled in the bin or at the center, you turn it into something of worth. Those soda cans & bottles can make some great jewelry, and those clothing & textile items with one tiny hole or stain on them can be turned into fabulous garments once that small part is extracted. Furthermore, the cardboard of cereal boxes make very cool bookmarks. Honesty, I could go on & on. Just stop by Etsy & put Trashion in the search to find some great examples of upcycling available.

Don’t get me wrong… recycling is awesome! Kudos to all that do it, that’s the least we should be doing, but when taken a step further we’re utilizing the “reuse” part of the “recycle, reduce & reuse” to it’s full extent. And really, that’s what needs to be done to make a difference. When our (here in the States) trash dumps can be seen from Space… SPACE!!!… we’ve got to take action!

We are a consumer based society, but we can be conscious consumers relatively easily. If we all purchased a bit of upcycled goods within the next year…. say… half of what we buy now, just think of all of the natural resources that we’d be saving! We could truly make a difference just one small step at a time. I don’t know all the statistics on what kind of impact this could possibly make, but I do know that change begins with ourselves. So… be the change you want to see!

Happy Upcycling!

Today’s Reconstructed Etsy Finds

Hi reconstructed fashionistas… here are a few of my current favorite reconstructed finds on Etsy! Looks like I may have fall on the mind, what do you think?

Orange Plaid Ruffle Wrap $36 from ednaandwilhemina









Custom PCEnLUV lunchbag lined with fused plastic $26 by nectorgirl






no woman no cry $25 by bravegrrl









I know at least one of these appeals to you! Go on, give reconstructed fashion a try… you and your environment will love it!