Spry: Rock Show Shirt

Hello lovelies! I’m the Sprite[in the]Stacks, or Spry here.

I am the Deconstructionalist of the group, and am enamored with all things Upcycling and DIY. ┬áThis past year I participated in the Great American Apparel Diet, and although I admit I cheated twice, it spurred me to figure out how to refurbish my clothing. Figuring out how to actually wear that thing I bought but really can’t pull off.. it’s a good feeling when it succeeds. (And if it doesn’t, it feels good to put it in the donation bin too.)

My first forays into clothing-remixes were deconstructing T-shirts. This was before I got my sewing machine, so they were all no-sew projects. Which are easier to share!

This is my Rock Show Shirt: this project works best with a shirt one size too big on you. It was originally a band shirt I bought 10 years ago, in my awkward teens, when I wore clothes too big for me, which are bigger for me now. It had been sitting in my closet for 10 years, partially because it was a RELIC to me and I didn’t want to wear the shirt out, ever. Partially because I realized it was unflattering, despite it’s awesome colors. Well, it was time to drag it out into the open, because I wanted something to wear to a Rock Show (and everyone wears other-band shirts to shows).

First, take the big shirt and cut off the sleeves and open up the neck. Rock Shows are hot, stuffy places, and a tanktop is the way to go. I made one shoulder a thick bunch/flower of fabric, and the other shoulder a two-strap affair. All by cutting holes into the shirt and tying knots with the strips of leftover shirt (evtl I will have a more in-depth post on shoulder strap options).

If you like a loose shirt, you can be done with funky shoulders. Wear it layered with another tank. I didn’t want to multi-layer, so I tightened the shirt up.

Put the shirt on. Mark with pins or chalk where your bra hits your back. This is where the ties in the back will go, which means you can wear a bra and it won’t show. Pinch the excess fabric on the sides to eyeball how much tighter the shirt needs to be.

Now (after you take the shirt off) cut the back of the shirt up the middle. Where the mark of your bra-back is, make three horizontal cuts, to create two straps, about an inch thick. Cut the straps about the amount you pinched on each side. Knot the straps (I knotted them so they criss-crossed for a nice cinch).

I put the shirt back on and realized that there was a lot of fabric above the knot that needed to be cut. I just cut it down into a V, from the shoulders to the knot. I’m sure you can make fun thin strips of this fabric too, so there are knotted patterns down your shoulder blades. The extra fabric below the knot overlaps each other nicely, so the area is covered, but well-ventilated. I didn’t bother modifying it, but feel free to, if you have the time before rolling out!