DIY: Cut-out tee’s

It’s been awhile since we did a DIY post, and we were itching to get crafty again. After some poking around the Internet (seriously, what did people do before the Internet?) and a timely post from UrbaneBloc.com, we came across some cool cut-out t-shirts that we thought could be pretty easy to try our hand at. 


Some of our inspiration: 

Here’s what you need: 

– An oversized, slouchy t-shirt. Fitted will just look trashy here, not “I’m Coachella-ready”. Pick your colour! We chose tees from Joe Fresh for their punchy colours and solid value. *Protip: learn from our mistakes and pick a solid cotton shirt. The blends feel too flimsy after they’re cut.
– Sharp scissors with pointy tips. 
– Soft pencil or marker if you’re desperate (but a soft pencil works much better).
– Ruler.

We tried two different ideas, one more difficult than the other. There are tons more out there, so try these, then see what else inspires you.
DIY #1: Show Your Ribs
We loved the design of this one, reminiscent of a spine and ribs exposed down the back. Plus, we found a template online from the eternally-handy DIY Queen Martha Stewart that made our first attempt pretty simply. Difficulty factor: 2/10 (but it takes a long time. Have some wine and good tunes on hand while you’re cutting out all of those pesky ribs). 

Step 1: 
Print out the template. Fold the shirt in half to figure out where the centre line is (we like precision).



Step 2: 
Place beneath the shirt. If it’s moving around on you, tape it in place, because you gotta trace that bad boy. Trace the pattern with your soft pencil. Try and keep the pencil lines as light as you can, to make it easier to cut out without leaving any traces behind after.



Step 3:
Repeat above on the other side of the shirt, taking care to make sure the two sides line up. 


Step 4: 
Cut away! Cut out the parts that correspond with the black parts on the stencil – that is, the “spaces” in between the ribs. Take your time, but don’t worry about it being perfect. You are making a torn shirt, after all.


Step 5: 
Wear and collect admiring glances this summer. 

DIY #2: Woven V
This one looks super complicated, but it actually took less time than the one above. The cutting part is super speedy, while the woven effect is a bit trickier. Difficulty factor: 4/10 – we had to play around with weaving the back a few times, but once you get it, it’s a breeze. 

Step 1: 
Lay shirt out and fold *just the back* in half. If you fold the whole shirt in half, you’ll cut through the front. That’s a little too much exposed skin, in our opinion.


Step 2: 
Grab a rule or tape measure to use as a straight line to cut against. Lay it in a “V” along the edge of the shirt, up to the collar. The wider the V, the more exposed your back will be. Pick how much cut-out you’d like and grab your scissors.



Step 3:
Start cutting pinkly-width strips down the shirt, cutting all the way to the ruler. Again, don’t worry about jagged edges or crooked lines – they’ll just add to the effect.



Step 4:
Once you’re done cutting all the way down to the bottom of the V, grab each strip and stretch it out. This makes the cotton roll under, which hides the jagged edges and opens up the spaces between strips. 

Once you’re done stretching out the strips, your shirt should look like this.

Step 5:
This is where it was get a bit trickier. You can either leave it as is, or attempt to weave the back to add a little pizazz. 

To do this, you grab the top strip and the second strip. Pull the second strip under the first and over the top – the second strip should now be at the top of the shirt. Repeat this with the third strip – grab it and pull it under the second and over the top, so now the third strip is at the top of the shirt. Repeat all the way down; you will start to see a pattern forming on either side of the V. 


Step 6: 
Once you’re done weaving all the way to the bottom, cut the very last strip in half and use it to tie the weave off. Tie each half of the cut strip to the strip above to hold your weave in. 

We really liked the look of double weaving it, so we repeated steps 5 and 6 above. Then we realized our shirt looked a little business in the front, party in the back with the V-neck collar in place, so we cut that off to make the front a little edgier. This is the final result: 
Ta da! We’re excited to wear these to Field Trip this summer, to drink tall boys in Trinity Bellwoods, the beach off Toronto Island and backyard BBQ’s. Basically, to any event that involves sunshine and warm weather.

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