Working Wardrobe blog - 4 ways to upcycle your clothes

4 ways to upcycle your clothes

Upcycling is the process of transforming unwanted clothes into clothes that are perceived to be of greater quality.

Why should we want to upcycle?

Upcycling reduces waste – meaning it reduces harm to the environment and is a more sustainable choice.

Upcycling can also save you money. You can upcycle many things such as Clothes, Furniture and even cutlery.

However, this blog will be focusing on how you can upcycle your clothes.

So, what’re the different methods and equipment that we can use to start upcycling our wardrobe?

1. Sewing

A lot of upcycling involves sewing, from fixing damage, to sewing-in elastic waistbands.

Sewing is a great life skill to have in general. If you would like to learn how to sew, these YouTube videos are a good way to get started:

Make sure to be patient with yourself whilst learning a new skill and give yourself lots of practice!

If you don’t have a sewing machine and don’t plan on purchasing one, you can also have a go at hand sewing. All you need is a needle, scissors and some thread.

For more guidance on hand sewing, have a look at these YouTube videos:

2. Fabric Glue

This can be an efficient substitute for sewing depending on the type of project you’re doing.

For example, if you want to crop a t-shirt, you can avoid worrying about cutting it perfectly straight, because you can use fabric glue to create a hem at the bottom.

3. Scissors

There are lots of things you can do with scissors, you can turn trousers and jeans into shorts, or even just alter them if they’re too long.

You can also crop t-shirts, sweatshirts and turn t-shirts into vests by cutting out the sleeves, get creative!

4. Fabric dyes & paints

You can use fabric dye to change the colour of a piece.

Many people use fabric dye as a way to create tie dye patterns on t-shirts:

You can use fabric paint to create patterns, images, slogans and details on your clothes:

Fabric dye and paint are fun, creative and easy ways to get involved in upcycling.


Upcycling is such a great way to combat waste.

The next time you have a piece that you’re contemplating getting rid of, have a think if there is any upcycling you can do in order to keep it and reduce waste.

If you would like to learn more about upcycling things like furniture, have a read of this blog.

Don’t be afraid to let your creativity flow and try out some upcycling!