Make a Gorgeous Open Back Top From a Long Sleeve Shirt

6 Materials
30 Minutes

I love a good fashion transformation and this is one of my favorites! I refashioned a long sleeve shirt into an absolutely stunning open back top. In just a few simple and easy steps I was able to create a stunning, fashion-forward top that has become an absolute closet essential. If you are looking for your next fashion upcycle, this tutorial is what you need! Follow my easy, step-by-step guide and get started on creating the most amazing open back top that can be dressed up or down for any occasion.

Tools and materials:

Long sleeve shirt





Sewing machine

Mark the open back
Mark the shirt

The first thing I did to get this stunner of a top is mark where I wanted the open back to end. 

Mark a new neckline

I wanted to drop the neckline a little lower so I marked on the front where I wanted the neckline to be. 

Draw the open back

Next, I turned the shirt over and marked from the start of my open back to the top of the shirt. Using a ruler in this step would have definitely been easier!

DIY cut long sleeve shirt
Cut the shirt

I then used my scissors to cut along my markings including the lowered neckline! I could already tell this was going to be an amazing top.

Cut out ties

I snipped open the bottom of my shirt and then drew two semi-circles along the bottom. I cut these to form the ties for my open back shirt so I made sure to leave them attached to the fabric and not cut all the way through. 

Cut across

I then drew a straight line across the shirt at the point where my open back would end. I cut along this line carefully avoiding the ties I had just made. 

Sew the ties
Sew the ties

I folded the ties right sides together and sewed. I then made sure to turn the tie right side out and it had a beautiful, neat finish. I repeated this on the second tie at the back of the shirt. 

Easy DIY long sleeve shirt
Hem the edges

I hemmed the edges of my new top to give it a neat and professional finish! 

Add a neck strap
Add a neck strap

To create a neck strap for my amazing new shirt, I used the neckline of the original top since it was stretchy material. I made sure it fit and sewed it on across the back. 

DIY open back shirt

I am so obsessed with this open back blouse! What other long sleeve shirts upcycle ideas do you have? Let me know in the comments below! 

Suggested materials:

  • Long sleeve shirt
  • Marker
  • Pins
See all materials

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1 comment
  • Sue
    on Dec 1, 2020

    I could see this done with a short sleeved tee shirt and wearing it during the summer. Too cold for this right now.

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