How to Make a Cut-Off the Shoulder Shirt

Updated November 21, 2016

People looking for a truly one-of-a-kind style often create their own clothing. But you don't need to be a seamstress or fashion designer to make your own apparel. In fact, all you need is a pair of scissors and T-shirt to create a fashionable off-the-shoulder shirt at home. Any basic tee can be turned into a stylish off-the-shoulder shirt with a little planning and just a few snips.

Find a T-shirt that you'll want to fashion into an off-the-shoulder tee. For a retro 1980s look, select a shirt that's a few sizes too big for you. It might have a design on the front, such as a band's logo, or can be a plain neon colour. T-shirts in your normal size and style can also be cut to hang off the shoulder.

Use chalk to mark how wide you want the new neckline to be. To create a scoop wide enough to rest off the shoulder, this half-circle line should be at least an inch wider than original collar of the shirt.

Try on the shirt with the chalk markings to see what the neckline will look like once it's cut. If the scoop doesn't fit right -- for example, if it hangs too low -- rub off the chalk line and draw a new one.

Lay the shirt on a flat surface. Straighten out any wrinkles in the fabric.

Cut the shirt along the marked chalk line. Start at one end of the tee, snipping through both the front and back of the shirt as you cut.

Snip away any loose fringe around the new neckline of the shirt. Remove any loose strings or clumps of fabric to create a smooth line all around.


For some extra flair on your off-the-shoulder shirt, add some ribbon around the cut neckline. Find a ribbon in a colour that will match the tee. Lay it around the front and back of the neckline, and hold it in place with pins. Use a needle and thread to sew along the ribbon. Search thrift shops and vintage stores to find one-of-a-kind T-shirts that can be transformed into fashionable off-the-shoulder tees.

Things You'll Need

  • T-shirt
  • Chalk
  • Flat surface
  • Scissors
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