by | Op Shop Lookbook

If you’re looking to do a DIY fash project, look no further than the humble men’s shirts at the thrift shop….they’re so easy to repurpose into on trend pieces! With just a few nips, stitches and tucks you can get the look for less and give these preloved pieces a new lease on life!

The best part is they usually go for between $2-$7 so even if you have super basic skills like me and you completely bungle it, you haven’t broken the bank!

This shirt was inspired by a label called Matin…I saw fashion blogger Talisa Sutton wearing it on Insta and it retails for $390 (well out of my price range!), so I thrifted a similar pattern shirt by Sportscraft for 65 cents at St Paul’s opshop Ashgrove and tried to work my magic!

I cut off the collar and created a v-neck shape just above the button I wanted to keep on the front seam, then hemmed the edges. To make the choker scarf I turned the collar backwards, folded it up and adjusted the button to fit the diameter of my neck…it was that easy!

This DIY project doesn’t even require any kind of sewing, which is pretty awesome especially for someone like me who failed home ec in school!

All you need is a men’s shirt in a print you like… I’m a stripes or gingham kind of girl but whatever floats your boat, then just fold the collar under, roll up the sleeves and tie up the ends! This tied up look is so on trend right now and this is so cheap and easy to pull off!

A lot of fashion bloggers are wearing striped ruffle, bell and bow creations so I took inspo from one of my Instagram icons Blaire Eadie and made a similar top out of this men’s shirt.

I laid a singlet top of my own over the top to figure out how much I needed to take the sides in, then I tucked the collar in, cut off the sleeves and cut them in half length ways, connected them together and folded them over and sewed them up to create a ribbon look, then hand stitched them to the shoulders.

This shirt was inspired by a label called Chic Wish and is probably one of the hardest of the men’s shirt DIY projects I’ve ever attempted. It literally took me weeks! Haha. The key with all of these men’s shirt DIYs is finding slim-fit long shirts so you have plenty of excess material to play with.

I trimmed off the bottom ensuring there was still enough length to tuck the top into something high-waisted, then I cut off the arms and collar. I popped one of my own sleeveless button-up shirts over the top and used that as a guide for how much I needed to take it in.

After that I cut the sleeves off just above the elbow and took in the top part of the sleeve to make it more tailored, then reattached it to the shoulder. I then used the excess material from the base of the shirt and the bottom of the sleeves to create bell sleeves…I cut 3 A-line shaped pieces, sewed them together and attached them above the elbow.

Then I used the remaining pieces to create these little ties to tie around the elbow seam!

This next creation was inspired by a Sportmax shirt I saw in Marie Claire retailing for $440, which is cray cray in itself…think my whole wardrobe is worth that!

So I had a crafternoon with slow fashion advocate, Leah of Unmaterial Girl and we turned this $2.50 men’s shirt from Windsor Road thrift shop into this ruffle reality.

All we did was trim a piece off the bottom to create the ruffle…the key is to not make the ruffle piece too wide or the ruffle will droop unless it’s tough cotton. Then stitch a gathering stitch on one edge of the ruffle piece, tie the two threads together at one end then scrunch the fabric along evenly.

Straight stitch the ruffle wrong side up against the middle seam. Unpick the gathering stitch knot once the ruffle is attached and pull out the thread. Then try the shirt on and add little hand stitches to the ruffles if it looks a little droopy.

Have you attempted any men’s shirt DIYs? Share your top tips with me in the comments below!

PHOTOGRAPHY: Taylor Kezia Instagram + Facebook

Sportscraft shirt – 65 cents @ St Paul’s opshop Ashgrove + caramel pencil skirt – $6 @ Red Cross Shops
Fortitude Valley + Prada clutch – hand me down.
Ted Baker shirt – $5 @ Suited to Success Fortitude Valley + Celine tee – $10 @ Gumtree + Shareen shorts – $2 @ Yesterday’s Thrift Shop Rosalie + horse bit bag – $5 @ Vinnies Sandgate.
Maroon shirt – $2.50 @ Windsor Rd Thrift Shop + Frame denim bell flares – $3 @ FSG opshop Biggera Waters + Joanne Mercer heels – RSPCA opshop New Farm + Portmans belt – $2 RSPCA Brighton SA + Prada clutch – hand me down.
Men’s shirt – $2 @ Yesterday’s Thrift Shop Rosalie + frayed skirt – $3 Repsychlers Opshop Tweed Heads + Lack of Color hat – $5 @ Vinnies Fortitude Valley.
Men’s shirt – $2.50 @ Windsor Rd Thrift Shop + Nudie Jeans – $20 @ Vinnies Newstead.