This summer the off shoulder dress is just as popular as previous summer. With or without ruffles, denim, cotton, button down, you name it. Even fair fashion brands like Armed Angels has designed one.

Armed Angels Denim Look Off Shoulder Dress

Now I still had my dad’s old, but in perfect condition, shirt hanging in my closet.  The shirt is way too big for me to wear as a shirt but a tiny bit to wide and open to wear as a dress properly. Also, the fabric of the shirt is quite thick, so during the summer the shirt is a bit too warm. Thus the challenge was created! I would turn the shirt into a dress that was cool while still covering enough. Naturally, creating an off the shoulder dress came to mind.

I looked up a DIY and found out it is not hard to make at all. Well that’s what I thought… Thank the DIY gods that my brother’s girlfriend Sofie was in the same room while finishing this DIY. Otherwise I would probably never completed it. And it turn out so amazing! I actually couldn’t really believe it. So besides having someone handy near you, this is what you need:

  • An oversized button down shirt
  • Scissors
  • A sewing machine (or a needle and thread)
  • Thread
  • Pins
  • Safety Pin
  • Elastic band
  • Measuring tape
My dad’s shirt before the DIY

Step 1: Cutting off the top

I started by cutting of the collar and a bit of the top over the length of the shirt. I decided to not cut off too much, since the shirt was already quite short. Just enough so I could fold it inwards twice while leaving enough room for the elastic band.  I did that by putting my measuring tape in a straight line on top of the shirt and drawing a line with the pins. It looked something like the following.

Step 1.1.
Step 1.2.

Step 2: Creating space for the elastic band

The next step is to start creating space for the elastic band by folding the top of the fabric inwards twice and pinning it down. I took around 2 cm, which is the width of the elastic band. By the way, for the right length of the elastic band, just wrap it around your shoulders and cut it when it’s tight enough (see step 2.1.). Or measure from shoulder to shoulder and double that amount. After I pinned it down, I unbuttoned the shirt and ran it through the sewing machine. If you don’t know how to use a sewing machine, you can do it by hand as well or ask someone close to you really nicely to help you out. While sewing, keep the ends open and maybe even keep some extra space open for easy acces of the band.

Step 2.1.
Step 2.2.
Step 2.3.


Step 2.4.

Step 3: Finishing the dress

The final steps left is to run the elastic through the created space in the top of the dress and sewing it shut. If you want to do this in an easy way, you could attach a safety pin to one side of the elastic. This way you have more grip when you have to pull the elastic through. Be careful that when you are pulling it through, the other side doesn’t slip out! Because that’s quite annoying…


Step 3.1.
Step 3.2. 

I (or actually Sofie as well haha) also added an extra final touch to the dress. She sewed the bottom part of the opening shut so it doesn’t fall open. Normally this is not a disaster, but since the dress is a bit short, an opening in the front can be a bit too revealing if you know what I mean.


To add some extra ”newness” to it, I decided to cut my hair as well 😉 Sunglasses are from Gobi Amsterdam. 



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