Summer Essentials: 11 DIY Projects to Revamp Your Wardrobe

Advice & Stories, Living & Spending
on July 10, 2014

On your next lazy summer afternoon, get crafty—and save a little cash, while you’re at it—with these simple up-cycling ideas for trendy summer tops, totes and accessories. These resourceful bloggers keep their supply lists minimal, mostly calling for items that can already be found in your closet and around the house.


DIY Workout Bag

DIY Projects

Say Yes

We all have a stash of old t-shirts we refuse to throw out. They lie in drawers, neglected and rarely-worn, but their sentimental value makes them impossible to toss. Instead of keeping those tees tucked away, sport your favorite logos at the gym with Say Yes’s DIY Workout Bag. This personalized accessory is a cheap alternative to a store-bought drawstring bag, and you’ll finally get some use out of those old tees.


DIY Fringe Top

DIY for Summer

Free Series

Free Series offers a simple tutorial for embellishing any old piece of clothing that needs a little love. Using fringe, lace or pom poms, you can add trim to shorts, dresses, t-shirts or even your pj’s! Next time you are about to throw away a piece of clothing that seems un-wearable, look to this DIY Fringe Top for repurposing inspiration. You’ll end up with a like-brand-new addition to your closet.


DIY Open Back Button Down Cover Up

DIY Summer Dress

Head to the pool in Love Maegan’s breezy swimsuit cover up. De-clutter your man’s closet by clearing out untouched dress shirts, while saving money on a new beach cover-up this summer. The trendy open back keeps this classic look relaxed and casual.


Golden Ring Necklace DIY

DIY Jewelry

Sincerely, Kinsey

In less than five minutes and for under $5, Sincerely, Kinsey made this Golden Ring Necklace DIY that only uses a jewelry chain and key rings. This simple necklace is versatile and could dress up any outfit from a plain tee to a little black dress.


DIY Knotted Racerback

Style DIY

Trash to Couture

If you don’t own a lot of sporty tank tops to see you through the dog days of summer, try Trash to Couture’s DIY Knotted Racerback to repurpose your old, heavy tees into lightweight tanks. Voila!


Upcycled Text Tank Top

T Shirt DIY

The Merrythought

Another stylish way to breathe new life into plain tees and tanks is to use paint markers to embellish and customize. Say goodbye to buying graphic tees and hello to endless possibilities. This Upcycled Text Tank Top from The Merrythought is a great example of how to tastefully draw on a tee without it looking too “crafty.”


Rug Bag

DIY Purse

Lisa Leonard Blog

This surprisingly inexpensive and cheap Rug Bag from Lisa Leonard Blog definitely looks like something that would cost big bucks. If you don’t have a small rug at home for this project, you can find one at Ikea for just $3. Use this bag as a beach tote in the summer, and when fall comes around this cozy bag will fit right in on campus or at the gym.


Zipper Pouches

Summer DIY Projects

Haberdashery Fun 

Now that reusable shopping totes are a backseat staple, we end up with more bags than we can find uses for. Relieve some of the clutter and up-cycle your totes into Haberdashery Fun’s Zipper Pouches. These functional pouches are a great way to divide up items in your purse to keep everything organized—think makeup, school supplies, and beyond.


Chain Hair Tie

DIY Projects


Just like bobby pins, hair ties seem to appear into corners around the house and in the car. Whether you have too many hair ties or no longer wear your bright-colored bands, I Spy DIY’s Chain Hair Tie is an easy-to-make, fashionable bracelet that looks even cuter stacked.


Drawstring Backpack


Always Rooney

Always Rooney’s Drawstring Backpack uses scraps of leather and canvas fabric to make this summer bag. If you find yourself doing any touristing this summer, a bag like this one is the ideal alternative to a bulky purse.


Leggings Bandeau



With so many cute summer tops showing off open backs, it can be challenging to know what to wear underneath. If you’re like me, then you’ve tried to wear an open back top or loose tank, only to realize at the last minute that you don’t own a bandeau. Skunkboy’s bandeau made from old leggings is a quick (and cute) fix when you don’t have the time or money to purchase a new bandeau.


You might also like… 7 DIY Decor Ideas for Summer Entertaining, Q&A with a Budget-Friendly Style Blogger

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