You most probably have dozens of T-shirts in your closet, given that they’re one of the most popular clothing items amongst ladies and gentlemen of all ages. Indeed, 91% of US citizens confess to owning a favorite T-shirt. And a further 62% of them claim to have over 10 T-shirts. You’re sure that the situation in the rest of the world isn’t much different. (1)

So if you have some old ones in your wardrobe, it might not yet be time to dispose of them. You’d want to jazz them up a bit and continue wearing them for several years. Here are helpful tips for your consideration.

T-shirt painted in tie dye style on a wooden table. White clothes painted by hand.


In 2020, some research indicated that the worldwide T-shirt printing market ballooned a whopping USD$3.64 billion and is set to continue growing at a rate of 9.7% in the coming years. That tells you about the popularity of the printing trend. As such, you’d want to jump into the fashion craze by screenprinting your old T-shirts to give them a bit of life. (2)

What’s more, if you have a considerably large collection and your designs are stunning, you can consider selling them through online marketplaces such as Pixels and get good cash in return.

Cut out

Another wild T-shirt trend doing rounds is cutting out fascinating patterns from the fabric and leaving the cutout areas bare. This doubles up as both a unique design and a vent to let in the fresh air and keep your body cool, especially during hot summers. The good thing is that you can cut out any pattern you feel like, whether you want it at the back, front, sleeves, or around the collar. If no fancy design seems to come to your mind yet, consider the following:

  • ‘Tree of life’ cutout
  • Cut most of the back into 1-inch strips, split the strips into left and right through a vertical cut from the collar to the bottom hem, and then tie the corresponding right and left strips in groups of three
  • Skull cutout
  • Geometric shapes
  • Ribbed or open-heart pattern
  • Cross shape

Embroidery patches

While you can directly embroider desired patterns onto your old T-shirts, you’d want to simplify the process by cutting out embroidered patches from other clothes that you no longer wear and stitching them onto your T-shirt. You can fix the patch at any appropriate section of the T-shirt—be it the sleeves, chest, abs, shoulders, or back.

Embroidery took hold in the 15th century where women all across Europe set up workshops to ornament fabrics with needlework. Since then, embroidered clothes have been a huge fashion hit globally. Perpetuate the ageless trend by having an embroidered patch on your T-shirts. (3)

Add lace panels

Lace is that delicate, web-patterned fabric you see on ladies’ clothing. It’s believed to have been invented in the 15th century. Come the 17th century, the industry boomed as the lace was used to decorate virtually everything, including dresses, doorknobs, headboards, and the like. As it was initially expensive, it connoted luxury, and its semi-transparent nature makes it racy. Thus, if you’re a woman and not afraid to make a bold statement of your femininity, make a point of adding lace panels on your T-shirt sleeves or any other appropriate part. (4)

Refashion the shoulders

It’s said that, nowadays, any place teeming with style-conscious women is also teeming with off-shoulder tops. The bare-shoulder look is such a hit that renowned fashion designers claim ‘it’s the best thing happening now’ in the feminine fashion world.

So jump on board the ship by turning your round collar T-shirt into a fancy off-shoulder blouse. It should be easy if you closely follow guides on how to go about it. Once done, walk the sunny streets and flaunt your bare shoulders while you also aerate your body to avoid feeling sweaty. (5)

Fringe and dye

Last on the list, but not the least, is a quick DIY project you can do in under one hour. Take a pair of scissors and cut fringes out of the bottom hem of the T-shirt. Then, dye or bleach the fringes in a color that contrasts but matches the rest of the T-shirt. For instance, if you’re working on a red T-shirt, you can use a black-and-white dye on the fringes.

Don’t discard your old T-shirts yet

If you feel bored with your T-shirts, please don’t throw them away. Consider modifying them in the ways mentioned in this post and more, and you can enjoy wearing them for several years. And if you have quite a number, redesign and sell them online or locally for some extra bucks.


  1. “20 Things You Never Knew About T-shirts”, Source:
  2. “Custom T-shirt Printing Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Printing Technique (Screen Printing, Digital Printing, Plot Printing), By Design, By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2021 – 2028”, Source:
  3. “Opus Anglicanum: the beauty of medieval English embroidery”, Source:
  4. “A brief history of lace”, Source:
  5. “Why the off-the-shoulder top is suddenly everywhere”, Source: