Upcycle to Fashion

HOW-TO: Go from tee to tank without dropping a stitch!

We all know we should Recycle, Reduce, and Reuse. And, if you are at this site, you probably already do. Now, we can extend this mantra from empty soda bottles and old newspapers to our favorite (and not so favorite) T-shirts and other clothing items.

Thanks to the DIY crafty movement, there are a plethora of books focused specifically on making our old clothes new again. Check out the following books (and video clip) and remake your wardrobe without ever leaving your closet!

(BTW- you can recycle sewing scraps into cleaning rags or stuffing for pillows or sew them all together into a crazy quilt.)

Generation T: 108 Ways to Transform a T-Shirtdiy book
Megan Nicolay
This inspirational guide with DIY attitude has everything you need to know about the world’s great T-shirt: how to cut it, sew it, deconstruct it, reconstruct it, and best of all, transform it. Features more than 100 projects (plus 200 variations) for customized tees, tank tops, tube tops, T-skirts—even handbags, a patchwork blanket, iPod cozies, leg warmers, and more.

Rip It!: How to Deconstruct and Reconstruct the Clothes of Your Dreams diy book
Elissa Meyrich
Rip It! shows how simple and fun it can be to transform a tired wardrobe into hip, one-of-a-kind new looks without spending a dime. Elissa Meyrich shows beginners and experienced sewers everywhere how to customize pieces found at cheap chain stores, thrift shops, or the far reaches of a closet and create fabulous new designs.

Sew Subversive: Down and Dirty DIY for the Fabulous Fashionista
Melissa Rannels, Melissa Alvarado, Hope Meng
Fashion hipsters Rannels, Alvarado and Meng give beginning sewers all the basics, plus 22 tempting projects. Their mission—”subverting” fashion—is all about “embellishing and customizing clothes—refashioning them to make them uniquely your own.” This can mean anything from altering the fit of a blouse with pin tucks and sewing ribbon stripes onto an old pair of jeans to whipping up a sun dress out of a pillowcase.