DIY Ruffle T-Shirt Refashion Tutorial

heather handmade sewing

This post may contain affiliate links.

Learn how to add a ruffle to the shoulders of a tee for the perfect t-shirt refashion. It brings the shoulders in for a more feminine look.

One of my favorite items of clothing to refashion is tee shirts. There are so many to be found at thrift shops and closets. Men’s tee shirts get a soft, worn-out look after being worn, and they get so comfortable.

I wanted to created a simple tee refashion tutorial that totally changes the look. This tee refashion tutorial brings the shoulders in and makes the length and sleeves more flattering.

Watch the video at the end to help you make your own refashioned tee. There are affiliate links in this post.

Ruffle Tee Refashion Tutorial //

That back view is gorgeous. I love those ruffles and that adding the ruffles brought the shoulders in. This tee refashion tutorial is similar to my DIY ruffle tee that I constructed last summer. I just can’t get enough ruffles!

This tee is probably a little too short to wear with jeans, but in the summer I often wear tee with high waist skirts and pants, and cropped tees lay smoother when tucked in. I can’t wait to see this ruffle tee tucked into a skirt!

Ruffle Tee Refashion Tutorial //

DIY Ruffle T-Shirt Refashion Tutorial



Cut 3 inches off the sleeves. Cut 3 inches off of the tee shirt hem.

Cut the shirt hem into two pieces. Trim off the seam allowances.

Straighten the edges of the sleeve hems.

Sew one long hem to one short hem and then do the other.

Ruffle Tee Refashion Tutorial //

Now you have two long pieces of fabric that will become the ruffles. Curve the edges of the fabric strips.

Sew a basting stitch along the raw edge of the fabric and around the curved sides.

Pull the thread to gather the fabric into a ruffle. It should be gathered to about 16 inches long.

Ruffle Tee Refashion Tutorial //

Cut through the shoulder and down into the tee shirt. Cut perpendicular to the shoulder seam.

Turn the shirt wrong side out. Pin the gather to the cuts you just created. Pin the cuts you just created closed with the ruffle inside.

Ruffle Tee Refashion Tutorial //

Sew the seam with a zigzag. Finish the edge with a zigzag or a serger.

Turn the tee shirt right side out. Topstitch the seam allowance of the ruffles towards the neckline. This will make the ruffles lay flat.

Ruffle Tee Refashion Tutorial //

I purposely chose a tee shirt for the tee refashion tutorial that was a solid color and had a v-neck. I think the lines created are beautiful and lead up to my face.

This tee color is heathered which I can never get enough of, and it’s right between a pink and a red. I think I’ll wear it all summer long because it’s a basic solid with outstanding details.

DIY Ruffle T-Shirt Refashion Tutorial

If you make something using this sewing project, I’d love to see! Please share it on social media with the hashtag #heatherhandmade and tag me!

heather sewing

I believe small sewing moments can create great joy. Find your own “right” way to sew. -Heather

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Heather. If I wanted to add ruffles to a baby onesie, would I just open the shoulders and add them in? Thanks , Sandy

Do you think this would work adding another fabric like cotton/ poplin?

Have you tried using two or more t-shirts and having contrasting ruffles on the shoulders and a false add-on layer on the hem and sleeves?

so cute. did you leave the hem unstitched?