4th of July Outfit – Upcycled T-shirt Dress

Ever since I overcame my fear of my serger (Brother 1034D ) I have been obsessed with upcyclng old t-shirts and repurposing them into cute dresses and skirts for my daughter.  Once a month my local thrift store has 1/2 price day.  I took advantage of that and found a cute patriotic shirt and three matching t-shirts and was able to make an adorable 4th of July dress for my for $4.  Plus I made some t-shirt yarn with the red, pink and blue shirts as well.

upcycled patriotic tshirt dress

I think this is my favorite upcycled dress thus far.  You can see I added a little more bling to the top by adding some rhinestones.  My daughter is super girly so anything sparkly and shiny and she is in love. This idea is also great for shirts that have a stain on it or little holes that we seem to often get in the bottom of shirts. 1.  Find a t-shirt that you like that doesn’t have a huge design on it and cut under the arm pits.

tshirt dress

tshirt dress tutorial

2.  Next cut up old t-shirts.  I chose to cut up 3 different colored t-shirts 3” each and did 2 of each color.  Make sure you cut the same amount for the back of the dress.  Also use the bottom of one of the t-shirts so you don’t have to hem it.  That is a nice shortcut.




upcycled tshirt dress

tee shirt dress

3.  I used a serger but you can easily use a regular sewing machine like I did for my other upcycled t-shirt dresses.  Sew all the t-shirt strips together.

tee shirt dress tutorial

4.  Next measure the width of the cut t-shirt bodice.  Mine was 11 1/4” wide.  So I cut the top of the sewn t-shirts to 11 3/4” wide at the top and then angled it (so it will have a nice A-line).  So the bottom of my skirt was 14” wide.

t-shirt dress

(I folded it it half before cutting it so I could make one cut)

tee shirt dress tutorial (2)

5. Cut both the front and back the same.

upcycled tee shirt dress

6. Next match up the sewn t-shirts right sides together pinning the sides.  Sew the right and left sides together.

DIY tshirt dress

DIY upcycled tshirt dress

7. Lastly with ride sides together pin and sew the bodice to the skirt.

tshirt dress how to

It is perfect for Kayla.  I love the length and the colors.  I also made some t-shirt yarn hair bows to go with it.

patriotic outfits

Cutest Lil Firecracker I ever did see!

4th of july dress

4th of july outfit

The little added bling with the heat set rhinestones.


red white blue dress

This was originally posted June of 2014


  1. Capturing Joy w/ Kristen Duke says:

    Love this, so cute! I need to pull out my sewing machine more, and not be so afraid of it!

  2. This is sooo cute! Adorable, you’re really talented! 🙂 Maybe, I’ll get inspired to do some more stuff like this. I’ve got a sewing machine, a very basic one, and hardly ever use it.

    • You are sweet, Patricia. Thank you so much! It’s really one of those things that will come easily with a little practice. Dust that baby off! 😉

  3. So cute and I would love to know how you did the hairbow. I looked and haven’t seen it yet, did I miss it? Thanks!


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