Home » Featured » Give a Shapeless Top some life: add a Shirred Band

Give a Shapeless Top some life: add a Shirred Band


First of all, my thoughts and prayers are with those who were affected in both large and small ways, 11 years ago, on Sept. 11th.

. . . . .


You know how those nice tent-like shirts are very much in style right now?  Yeah, they’re cute.  But not on me.  (Oh wait, maybe it would help if I’d pair one of those shirts with some skinny jeans?  Oh yeah, those are even worse on me. Ack!)  Anyway, I need a little more shape on top, even if it’s just a little cinching at the hips.  It doesn’t give me an hourglass shape at all (wait, I don’t have one of those either…ha!) but it certainly helps.



I found this great orange top at Kohl’s. I loved the full sleeves and the key hole opening at the top.  So I tried it on in the dressing room and, ACK!  Yep, terrible!  But I thought, hmmmm, I’ve done this before…….I’m going to give this shirt a shirred band too.  And lucky me, I liked the results just as well.


Here’s the cute, but shapeless shirt before……and then, as you can see, after I shirred that sweet little shirt right up!



Instead of just hanging, and doing nothing for me, the shirring gives this shirt a little more shape.



Now, it’s one of my favorite things in the closet.  And it only took me, eh, 15 minutes.  Perfect.



And yeah, the perk of those nice tent-ish shirts being in style, is that they’re so darn comfortable.  Well, guess what?  Shirring a band around the bottom doesn’t take away one bit of comfort.  Hooray.




Glad I gave you a chance, little orange shirt! :)



Again, the tutorial on how to quickly transform your shapeless shirt into something a bit more flattering, can be found here.





Ashley Johnston
  • Save

Ashley Johnston

Owner at Make It & Love It
Ashley Johnston is a professional DIY costume maker, sewist, crafter, and owner of Make It & Love It. She is a mom of 5 and a wife to a very patient (with my craft clutter) husband. In case you’re wondering, she always chooses crafting/sewing/designing over mopping/dusting/wiping base boards……but bathrooms/laundry/full bellies are always attended to. Whew!
Give a shapeless top some life: add a shirred band
  • Save


  1. Ananasa says:

    We love your ideas in crafting! Thank you so for this amazing post, could be used many a time for a numerous amount of shirts. Really wonderful tutorial Home For Handmade

  2. Anonymous says:

    Your website is really good , has taught me a lot .Today , I Did shirre a blouse!

  3. Jenn says:

    I can’t wait to try this. I’m very short (5’1″ on a good day) and rather well-endowed, so anything even REMOTELY tent-like or shapeless ends up looking like maternity wear on me. My boobs push the top out, and the rest just hangs down like a giant circus tent, making me look nearly as fat as I am tall. The unfortunate part about it is (as if the rest isn’t already unfortunate…hehee!) is that I’m actually rather slim, if you don’t count the little baby pooch that everyone gets after carrying a couple of kiddos.

    So shirts like the one you made are my absolute FAVORITE right now. I don’t have to walk around sucking in my tummy and feeling self-conscious about my “pooch,” but yet if the shirred bottom hits in just the right spot (slightly above the hip but below the pooch, at the flattest part of my front), it gives the illusion that I’m that skinny ALL up and down!! It’s pure magic when it works right. And shirts like this hide “muffin-top” better than a camo combat suit. But waaaay more comfortable!!!

    So anyway, I saw this post once before and I found myself coming back to it again, because I have a couple of “tent shirts” that I picked up on clearance that I’m just dying to try this little technique on. In fact, I have a shirt that fits me absolutely PERFECTLY that I’d like to see if I can use as a sort of pattern to take in the poofy shirts a bit before shirring them. Because when you’re so short, sometimes you can end up with TOO much poofy fabric. So we’ll see how it goes.

    I’m not much of a seamstress yet (I’m a photographer, and I just don’t have a lot of time for sewing), but I already have a HUGE pile of “stuff to sew” thanks to your blog. You are so inspiring, and you make it all seem so simple! I can’t wait to try out the shirred-bottom shirt!! Thanks again!

    Smiles, Jenn

  4. Michele says:

    Are there certain fabrics that work better to do this with than others? thanks!

  5. Gia says:

    So, I bought a maternity shirt that has this issue, but it also has sidetails, so on the sides, the hem goes down into a point longer than the rest of the hem. It literally looks like a circus tent, which is not great for my 25-week preggers body. Like I need something to make me look BIGGER. Would you ever try this with a shirt with a sidetail hem, and if so, how would you deal with the pointy sides – cut them off?? I bought it on a daily deal site so can’t reutrn it. And I’m NOT wearing it without a modification!

  6. Sarah says:

    So I was at Kohl’s today and saw a similar shirt. I was disappointed at the “tent-like” style, knowing (like you) that it wouldn’t look good on me. Then I remembered your tutorial, so I bought it. Took it home, shirred the bottom and now it’s perfect. Thank you SOOO much for thinking of and showing us this! You have taught me to look at clothes in a whole new way. The possibilities are now endless! ….. oh and I can only see your waist-line, but I know you had a baby a little over a year ago- you look fantastic!!

  7. Jody says:

    Holy! You look awesome!!!

  8. Jenna H. says:

    I wish you lived next door! That is so amazing! I’ve been following your blog for a while but just realized I could comment without an ID. I look forward to all your posts! :) Thanks for sharing!

  9. maya says:

    Fantastic! I have a really cute but terribly shapeless shirt in my closet – what a great idea! I

  10. Jessica Hornibrook says:

    I have a few maternity tents that could use some love like this…

    1. abbie says:

      That is is a great idea! I have some recent nursing-maternity shirts that are so very comfy and I don’t want to give them up, but the shapelessness…ugh. I think I have my weekend sewing project!

    2. Anonymous says:

      That’s exactly what I thought when I started reading this.

    3. Anna says:

      Ohh, you are right! What a great idea. Now I have to go through my pile and see what would work!

  11. Marie says:

    I love this so much. Okay, I have to go master that shirred band now!! Wish me luck :)

  12. Leigh Sabey says:

    I’m so glad I found your blog! I’m also tall (6′) and I DREAD shopping. Even though I have basic sewing skills, I’ve never thought to just alter pieces off the rack to fit me! Brilliant! This opens a whole world of potential…how many shapeless, not-quite-right shirts are waiting for me on clearance racks and maybe even thrift stores? A shirred style like this, especially, would be great — I can buy a larger shirt to fit my shoulders, but then I don’t have to feel like I’m wearing a tent :). Thanks!

  13. Gina at CampClem says:

    simple brilliant genius. thanks for the inspiration!

  14. Katy(LethargicLass) says:

    I am actually surprised at how shapeless it was before lol… looks great now!

  15. debbie says:

    looks very nice,, i want to try that..

  16. lisa says:

    So cute! I have never been able to wear those tent-link shirts, but I love the ones with the band on the bottom like you made. Very nice!

  17. Helen says:

    Really cute!

    Blue Eyed Beauty Blog

  18. Anna says:

    Thanks for the reminder to fix my top. I got one a few months ago with the purpose of fixing it after reading your tutorial and I still haven’t done it yet. Time to do it before it gets too cold to wear it.

    1. Anna says:

      I did it!!! It only took me about 30 minutes and that is because I run out of elastic thread and had to wind up some more. Love it!

  19. ste says:

    Thank you! I’m going to try this… now if I can only stop ordering shirts that are too big on me.

  20. Mindy says:

    Post-baby, I love shirt bottoms like that (and am wearing a similar shirt today). They hide the 2.5 year post baby belly flab :)

  21. Adriana says:

    I love it!!!!…

  22. Natalie says:

    I bought a shirt almost exactly like that yesterday and I love it! But … it’s a different fabric, and it fits closer to the waste at the bottom. Otherwise, it would still be at the store :) I did try on a tent-like shirt yesterday as well, and like Kelli said, it made me look like a tent. A big, huge, tent.

  23. Kelli says:

    Love it! I hate those tent shirts because they’re so cute on the manequin and models, but on me it looks like…well, a tent!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Hi, I'm Ashley

Hi, I’m Ashley—the DIY-enthusiast behind this crazy blog!

Back to Top
1 Share
Share via
Copy link