Cute Ways to Cut a T-shirt That's Too Big

Reinvent an oversized T-shirt with sharp scissors and a little creativity.

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You don't have to be a "Project Runway" finalist to transform a too-big T-shirt into a cool top: All you need is a sharp pair of scissors and a little creativity. So whether you've got a stash of comfy T-shirts from your brother's closet or you're hitting the thrift store for oversize tops, grab your scissors and start snipping your way to a whole new world of T-shirt style.

The Minimalist Approach

One of the easiest ways to transform your too-big T-shirt is to slice off the hemmed edges. Start by slicing the bottom of the shirt above the hem, cropping the top to the length you like best. Hip-length is usually a good bet. Then chop the sleeves above their hem to the sleeve length you prefer -- aim to hit a slim part of your arm to get the most flattering length. Finally, cut around the neckline -- following the hem closely will give you a scoop-neck effect, but cutting in a wide curve from shoulder seam to shoulder seam produces a sexy, off-the-shoulder effect. After you put down the scissors, stretch the fabric where you've been cutting to create a smooth, rolled edge. The resulting casual T-shirt is perfect for chilling on the couch, covering up on your way to the gym or running errands.

Taking Sides

To slim down your T-shirt for a more flattering fit, turn your top inside out, then cut it along the sides to flatter your curves, leaving the neck, sleeves and hem intact. You may want to use one of your favorite T-shirts as a guide, leaving about 1/2-inch of extra fabric on either side. Once you've found a shape you love, cut fringe along each side by making a series of shallow, parallel cuts. Next time you're catching up on "America's Next Top Model" reruns, double-knot the fringe two strands a time, essentially "stitching" together the sides of the shirt. Your newly slim T-shirt slips under a sharp blazer, teams up with your favorite jeans and looks cute with shorts for your morning workout.

Fringe With Benefits

Transform an oversize T-shirt into a sexy party top with some strategic fringe. This look works best with a sleeveless top, so start by slicing off the sleeves and hemmed neckline. Chop off the bottom hem of the shirt, then use your scissors to make long, parallel, up-and-down cuts from the bottom of the shirt to the bust line. Viola, a sexy, fringed tank that's just right for dancing all night. Bold fashionistas may flaunt this revealing top with nothing but a lacy bra underneath, but most women will probably be more comfortable wearing this fringed style over a slim-fitting cami.


Jersey T-shirts are the best base for DIY fashion -- they'll stretch and curl to accommodate your cuts rather than fraying. When you're making cuts, remember that it's much easier to cut more than to take back a big slice, so be conservative -- you can always make a neckline wider or sleeves shorter as you go.

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