DIY Shredded Shirt Tips

I used to be someone who didn’t understand the hype on the shredded clothing trend, I thought “why would I pay good money for a shirt that will fall apart quicker than one that costs less and is of higher quality?”

Over the years, this idea has become less and less alien to me as I found that some pieces actually looked pretty funky with all the different shredded patterns. But I still didn’t like the idea of paying anywhere between $50 to $150 for a shirt that has been ripped. (I now understand why it costs so much though)

Lucky me, I had a  friend who taught me how to shred my own shirt! I took one look at the one she was wearing at the time and I was sold 🙂

I’d shredded one of my own prior to visual aid where the shred patches are stringy, as shown above. When I was given a proper tutorial, I’d discovered the technique which allowed for a more even grid shred, which looks mesh-like. This style I find, snags less and lasts longer than the previous technique. Both have their own qualities and I wouldn’t say that I like the look of one more than the other.

Due to the style and nature of shredding, there are some key things to keep in mind:

Drape (size) 

  • If using a t-shirt, use one a couple sizes larger to get a good amount of drape or a off the shoulder effect. (A tight one may not send the right message to on-lookers)
  • If using a tank-top, use one that fits loosely on you, but not so large that side boob is on show. (Also – we don’t want the ‘working girl’ look)

Material (fabric type)

  • It is possible to shred pretty much anything, but the best results comes from using thin cotton fabrics.
  • You can decide to shred an old shirt or to go out and buy a cheap one to turn into something better. Both tops featured in this post are from Topman and are around $10 each.
  • As cheap  as the raw materials are for this project, it’s the time factor that’s the killer, shredding the whole back of a shirt can take anywhere from 3 hours (stringy shred) to 6 hours (mesh shred), or more! The time consuming nature of this project is probably why retail shops can charge so much (even if it is factory made). If people decided to do it themselves they would have to dedicate a whole day to the project, or do it over a long-period of time intermittently. If you would rather instant gratification, buy the pre-made shirt, if you’re in for a bit of fun, shred your own!
  • Personally, I’ve got an odd need to pull things apart, so any spare time spent in front of the TV could be used shredding as well 😉
  • Of course the more careful you are about the way you shred the more consistent the mesh will look, but don’t over think it, it is a shredded shirt after all and after a few washes larger holes will appear and the whole grunge look will be achieved.

Design (where you want the shreds to be placed)

  • Shredding is done in columns on the shirt, you can choose to do the whole back, or just a few strips along a side side. However, where you decide to place these columns affect the way the whole top looks and drapes on you.

I understand if there are many people who still are unimpressed with this kind of style. But I gotta tell you, its super comfy and undoubtedly very cooling during summer 😉

I’ve done a full DIY post with written instructions and a video for visual aid. If you are curious about the process, feel free to have a  look – DIY – Shredded Shirt

To have a peek at other blogger’s DIY ‘refashioned’ items go to Adventures in Refashioning where other participants of Fashion Beauty Friend Friday will be posting their projects.


LOve <3




19 Replies to “DIY Shredded Shirt Tips”

  1. This looks fantastic! But sooo much work! You are right that you could spend the time in front of the TV shredding away to create your masterpiece!

  2. Yes yes please tell me how to! And thanks so much for your love over at Thanks, I Made It. Excited to have found you too!

  3. I really like the white shirt here, but I just don’t understand how you did it. with scissors or what?? Could you maybe explain??

Comments are closed.