Hello! I'm Suzannah, a serious DIYer and mom of two little ones. Follow along with my DIY fixer upper house renovations, sewing and crafty projects, real food recipes, and de-stressing goals.
I believe you can love your home just the way it is, AND have the power to design and make big changes to make it better.
I'm also the author of DIY Wardrobe Makeovers!

Crazy braided tee refashion

Whoo-hoo, this one's a little crazy!

I branched out of my usual ruffle-front routine to make this cute summery tee from a long-sleeved, ancient Gap Favorite Tee.

Want the tutorial?

  • Start with a long-sleeved tee.  This one had been washed so many times it was getting short in the length and sleeves, and just looked tired.
  • Cut off the sleeves in a raglan style.  Think of a classic baseball tee.  Cut the neck off, too.

(The more you trim off on the neck, the lower your shirt will be in the front.  I cut off a little more to make it a little lower in the front, but didn't change the back.)
  • Cut off the hem and serging on the sleeves.
  • Cut the sleeves into strips about 1.5" wide, depending on how substantial you want your braid trim to look.  Mine ended up pretty thick but you could make a more delicate-looking one if your pieces were like .5" wide.
  • You'll need six strips total to go all the way around your neck, so cut and then sew the pieces together and press.  You'll end up with three loooong pieces 1.5" wide.  Press the seams open.
  • Put the three pieces together at one end (I used the foot of a stool to keep it down) and braid.
  • Now, back to the shirt.  Turn the hem under twice and sew the raglan sleeve opening down.  I used a zig-zag stitch, which worked really well to keep it from rolling or looking home-made.
  • Try on the tee and hold up the braid, to see how much braid you'll need.
  • Sew the braid together to form a circle.  It will be kind of ugly.
  • Use a scrap from the sleeves and wrap it around the ugly part where the seam is.  Hand-sew it down.
  • No pics of this part.  Now, center the braid piece on the top (I marked the center front and back of the shirt with snips) and hand-sew it down.
That's it!

So summery!  And eco-friendly too.  Don't you have some long-sleeved boring tees in your closet?


  1. I quite like this. I am in the process of fixing up a shirt I got at the salvation army with ruffles, much you like do in your tutorials.
    Hopefully it will come out even half as good as your stuff does!

  2. Good job! And inspiring...
    (sory my bad english)


  3. SO CUTE! Great job--I love tees like that! But, you forgot one step in your tutorial. I will word it for you: "Wear black bra when trying on white tee so all of internet knows you prefer a demi cup." heheheheheHAHAHAHA I think I'm funny, don't you?

  4. Oh I love this! I am not a tank wearing girl, but I think an application of braided jersey would be just as cool on the neckline of a tee.

    Thanks for the inspiration (as always!)


  5. I love your refashioned shirts. I get so inspired reading these posts.

    Love it!

  6. This is super cute! Thanks for sharing!

  7. Anonymous4/07/2010

    Super cute! Love your creative ideas!

  8. how in the world do you find time for all of these projects!! crazy! you must not sleep

  9. i need a sewing machine asap!! like NOW to make this beauty!

  10. I wish i knew how to sew on a machine. Love what you did!!


  11. LOVE this yet another great make over!!

  12. This is adorable. I'm wondering how it would look on a big pregnant belly. Maybe the beautifu braid would distract from the ever expanding bundle below.


  13. Absolutely love it! I've always loved the braided style and can't wait to try it myself.

  14. What a super clever idea! Love the simplicity of the look. So sweet of you to share the great tutorial.

  15. Awesome new top!! I linked to your tutorial on Craft Gossip Sewing:


  16. OH MY GOSH this made my day i am totally going home and trying this its soooo cute thanks for the tutorial!


  17. Anonymous4/08/2010

    I am so going to make this! I have a t-shirt that I love but the sleeves are a bit worn and stained (the inevitable result of loving it and wearing it a lot...) so it'll be perfect...

  18. oooh, love this. I wonder if I could make a maternity version using a longsleeved maternity top?
    I might've told you about this, but we have a Friday Fun Find party every week- you have so many fantastic creations every week that you could link up if you're interested. :)

  19. you are a girl after my own heart. I'm loving your blog!

  20. As a matter of fact, I do have an old long-sleeved tee in my closet!! And it would make the cuuuuutest summer top! You're amazing!
    *thanks, meredith, for posting this link on your blog*

  21. J'aime beaucoup!!

    Bonne journée.

  22. Anonymous4/19/2010

    Love this top! I'll definitely be trying this one.

    I'm east of Portland. It seems like about every other day I run into another blog from Oregon...we are creative here!

  23. This is really beautiful! I love it! Great job!

  24. Thanks, @Daily Craft! I got the button =)

  25. This is one of the most beautiful t-shirt refashions I've seen in quite some time! I'm wondering how cute it would look if you used a t-shirt (I have TONS of tees to refashion!) and added sleeves-turned-braid from another shirt, in a complimentary color?
    Oh, dear, I'm such a late poster to this one :-\
    Keep up the great work...I'll be checking out the rest of your blog shortly!

  26. desirae2/22/2013

    LOVE THIS,I'm totally a tank girl and I'm always hitting up old teeshirts but never thought of cutting up a long sleeve! thanks.

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