Learn How to Upcycle Old Pieces Into Beach Tie-Dye Fashion Favorites!

Karina Li
by Karina Li
7 Materials
2 Hours

While I was doing a closet clean-out, I realized that rather than throw old pieces away, I could upcycle some old clothes to create looks I would actually wear! I love using fabric that I already have to make new, trendy outfits! It’s so easy to restyle old clothes and create some fashion-forward masterpieces! If you are looking to upcycle a few old pieces sitting in your closest then this tutorial is for you! Follow my step-by-step guide and learn how to take old clothes from shabby to chic!

Tools and Materials:

  • Shirt
  • Sewing Machine
  • Fabric scissors
  • Bleach
  • Spray bottle
  • Gloves
  • Tank top
Bleach tie-dye

I started my upcycle with this old red golf T-shirt. I usually don’t wear red so I knew I would be making some changes to the color of my new piece. 

Cut the shirt
Cut the shirt

I started by cutting the shirt as close to the buttons as possible. 

DIY bleach tie-dye

I then tried the shirt on like a skirt and pinned it to make sure the waistline would fit. I headed over to my sewing machine and took the skirt in. 

Make a waistband
Sew the raw edge



Next, I sewed the top, raw edge down to make a waistband for the skirt.

Reverse tie-dye with bleach
Create the ruched style

In this step, I hand sewed two straight lines down the sides of my skirt. 

Gather the fabric

I gathered the fabric to create this gorgeous, ruched effect. I love how the gatherings add so much drama to this skirt! I pinned them in place and sewed them to keep them nice and secure. 

Bleach tie-dye skirt
Bleach-dye the skirt

I was so excited to dye the skirt to get an amazing color I would wear! I scrunched it into the sink and slowly poured bleach over it, rinsing it with water after each pour. 

Spray the bleach

I then used a spray bottle to spray bleach onto the skirt, in different areas, creating an amazing tie-dye effect. Once the skirt had dried, I rinsed it out until the water ran clear and waited for it to dry again. 

DIY bleach tie-dye skirt

I love how this skirt turned out! It’s now one of my favorite pieces to wear! 

DIY tank top

The next piece I transformed into a closet essential is this white tank top.

Seam rip the neckline
Remove the bias tape

I started by seam ripping the neckline to remove the bias tape. I love bias tape and I knew I would use it for my new neckline.

Cut the top
Cut the new shape

I then cut out the shape I wanted for my new and improved top. The top was a bit wide so I took in the sides to get a more fitted look. 

Pin the bias tape
Sew on the bias tape

In this step, I pinned the bias tape onto the new neckline and sewed it on. I love the clean finish bias tape adds to a neckline! I tried the top on again and realized there was still a lot of extra fabric so I took it in making sure it fit just right. 

Make the straps
Add the straps

To make the straps for my amazing new tank top, I took two pieces of the fabric and placed them right sides together and then sewed around three sides. I turned the fabric right side out using a wire to help me poke out the fabric. 

Press the straps

I pressed the straps down with my iron. Working with a material that doesn’t hold so well can be difficult but using an iron definitely does the trick! 

Sew on the sleeves

I then sewed the four sleeve pieces onto my tank top and I was ready for the big reveal! 

DIY white tank top

I just love how easy it was to make this tank top! It goes perfectly with my new skirt! What clothes are you ready to upcycle? Let me know in the comments below! 

Suggested materials:
  • Sewing machine
  • Fabric scissors
  • Bleach
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