A quick guide to upcycling old clothing



Is your wardrobe full of old clothes that you just don’t wear? Are your drawers packed full of jeans and t-shirts that are too small or out of fashion? Well, now is the time to show your clothing some love and start upcycling. Upcycling has grown in popularity over recent years thanks in part to our growing wish to reduce the amount of waste we throw away. So let’s take a look at some of the ways that you can add creativity to your clothing.

Old blouse
There are a number of ways that you can give an old blouse a new lease of life. Popular options include embroidery which is a great way to personalise and add a unique touch to a garment. Other popular options include embellishing with beads or crystals, sewing on patches or badges or adding a lace insert for some added detailing.

There are tonnes of ideas for recycling an old t-shirt and turning it into a stylish new item of clothing. Some of the simplest options include cutting an old t-shirt into strips and creating a scarf out of the strips while other options including creating a cushion cover using an old patterned t-shirt. Oversized t-shirts can be used to create a floaty summer dress with some simple sewing and cinching of the waist to create shape.

Other ways to upcycle t-shirts include turning it into a trendy vest with no sewing needed, cutting the sleeves off a long-sleeve t-shirt to create a pair of leg warmers or how about creating a produce bag for carrying around all your fresh food.

An old dress
Everyone has at least one or two dresses in their wardrobe that they no longer wear for a variety of reasons so why not take the time to give these a style update. One of the easiest transformations is to turn an old dress into a new skirt. Skirts can be teamed with a t-shirt, shirt or blouse to create a fashionable new look that is completely different to the original clothing item.

Stuck with an old bridesmaid’s dress that you don’t want to throw away? Give it a style upgrade by adding some embellishments such as adding lace to the hemline or lace inserts to create a brand new look suitable for a glamorous occasion.

A pair of jeans
One of the most obvious ways to transform an old pair of jeans is to turn them into a pair of denim shorts, absolutely no sewing needed! For those with a little more sewing experience, you could create a denim rucksack, denim tote bag or even a cover for your tablet or kindle. For those with children who have outgrown all their old jeans then you could create your very own patchwork quilt or throw.

Upcycling is a creative way to breathe new life into old clothes and offers you a chance to reduce your impact on the environment by reusing clothing. Another benefit of upcycling is you’ll end up with something that is completely different and tailored to you.

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