How to make shredded shirts, woven wonders
Published: Saturday, November 12, 2011
Updated: Monday, November 14, 2011 09:11
The T-shirt has to be one of the greatest inventions ever. You see them everywhere, they're gender-neutral and they're so darn comfy.
But sometimes you find a T-shirt with an awesome graphic and it just doesn't fit perfectly. Or maybe you have too many T-shirts and want to spice them up a bit.
This will teach you how to cut up your T-shirt and weave it back together again with easy designs and very little effort.
Artists such as Adam Saaks and Ed Hardy have made shirts like these. They sell for hundreds of dollars, but you can make these for practically nothing.
Materials you'll need:
1 T-shirt that fits well but slightly loose
1 pair of scissors
1 washable pen
I'll be using a black T-shirt, so I have a white gel pen so I can see my marks.
Prepare your shirt to weave and cut out all the pieces:
Step 1: Put the T-shirt on and look at it. Decide on a shape you'd like to cut into it, as well as where the T-shirt is loose. Weaving it together will make areas slightly tighter.
Step 2: Draw out a basic idea on paper of what you want and where to cut.
Step 3: Sketch the outline of the shapes onto the flat T-shirt.
Step 4: Mark out half-inch increments along the edges of the outlines.
Step 5: Draw straight lines from the marks to the outline edge, parallel with the bottom of the shirt
Step 6: If your design is on the side of your shirt and wraps around the front and back, cut both layers of fabric on these lines. If your design is only on the front or back, cut one layer of fabric on the lines. Stop at the rough outline. Don't cut the strips off completely.
Step 7: Stretch the bands so they curl slightly.
Now comes the weaving part. There are many different ways to weave your shirt. Here I will show you two: the basic weave and a twisting weave.
The basic weave:
Step 1: Hold the first band and the second band in your hand.
Step 2: Fold the first band over the top of the second band.
Step 3: Grab the second band and let go of the first band.
Step 4: Fold the second band overtop of the third band.
Step 5: Repeat steps 2 through 4 until you run out of bands.
This will give you a nice, clean edge if you push the wraps over. If you keep them in the middle, you get a spider web effect. After you run out of bands, you can hold the last loop down and start over, making another row of wraps.
In the end, you should have one small loop. To keep the whole thing from unraveling, you need to cut a small hole below the loop, cut that loop in half, then square knot the ends together again through the cut.
The twisting weave is very similar, only twisting the band before pulling the next band through.
The twisting weave:
Step 1: Hold the first and second bands in your hand.
Step 2: Twist the first band overtop of itself, making an ‘X' with a loop underneath.
Step 3: Pull the second band through the loop.
Step 4: Repeat steps 2 and 3 until you run out of bands.
This weave looks like it's been braided and looks best running down the center of the design.
You can make the bands as long or short as you'd like. You can even do this same weave on long-sleeved T-shirts. Cut the bands perpendicular to the sleeve, and then do the basic weave design. With these basic patterns, you can make your shirt as revealing or covering as you'd like.
Another quick way to spice up your T-shirt is to create shapes and pictures using very small cuts. Sketch out a design on the T-shirt. Using a "dotted line" technique, cut small holes around two inches long.
Don't let winter deter you. Layer a cut shirt over another shirt, so the color peeks out.
By reusing your old clothes and altering them slightly, you make less impact on the environment and your wallet. Who has extra money these days to go and buy lots of new fashionable clothes? Cutting and weaving your T-shirts creates something totally unique and special, which also reflects your personal style.
So search through your closet or go to Ross or Goodwill. With a pair of scissors, a bit of time and imagination, you can create a fashionable masterpiece