Refashioned Ruffle Shirt

Look stylish in a refashioned shirt with ruffles!

There are so many ways to update old clothes; you can add embroidery, restyle the garment, mix two pieces into one, and with few simple updates you can create new looks. A fun way to update and old shirt from the thrift store is to add some ruffles and create a refashioned ruffle shirt!

Why add ruffles?
  • To give an old shirt a new look and feel. Adding ruffles to a shirt can give it a completely new look and feel. This is a great way to update an old shirt that you no longer love, or to give a plain shirt a more interesting and stylish look.
  • To make a shirt more unique. Ruffles can help to make a shirt more unique and personal. This is especially true if you use unique fabrics or colors, or if you add ruffles in unexpected places.
  • To make a shirt more sustainable. Refashioning an old shirt is a great way to reduce waste and make your wardrobe more sustainable. It also helps to keep clothes out of landfills.
  • To express your personal style. Ruffles can be used to express your personal style in a variety of ways. For example, you can use ruffles to create a feminine, romantic look, or a more edgy and fashion-forward look.
  • To save money. Refashioning an old shirt is a great way to save money on new clothes. It is also a fun and rewarding DIY project.
Let’s make it!

If you have an old shirt that you are no longer wearing, consider refashioning it with ruffles. It is a great way to give the shirt a new life and to create a unique and stylish piece of clothing.

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - Supplies - JaneClauss.com


Brother Serger
Brother Sewing machine
A once loved shirt that needs updating
Coordinating fabric – one or more fabric colors and textures
Rotary Cutter and Straight edge
Fabric Scissors
Measuring tape
Straight pins

As a Brother Sews Ambassador I get to create all kinds of sewing projects using the best sewing and embroidery machines on the market. This post was originally created for my work with Brother Sews. 

Get started!

Plan to add layers of ruffles over the shoulders and down the back of your old shirt. You can also add ruffles down the center front.

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - old shirt - JaneClauss.com Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - ruffle placement - JaneClauss.com   Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - ruffle placement on the shirt - JaneClauss.com

Measure the length of the front of your shirt and back to determine how long the ruffles need to be.  To make sure your ruffles cover the front and back over the shoulder, you will double the length of that measurement when you cut your fabric.

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - measure the length - JaneClauss.com

Cut open the sides of the shirt you.

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - Cut up side seams - JaneClauss.com

On the coordinating fabric, measure the length and vary the widths from 2″ – 4″. We will do this because incorporating different widths will add depth to your ruffles.

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - Cutting fabric strips - JaneClauss.com Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - Cutting various fabric strips - JaneClauss.com

Use your straight edge and rotary cutter and cut the strips of fabric. Repeat this process to create all your ruffles. Remember, I always say, “more is more and less is a bore.”

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - JaneClauss.com Multiple colored fabric strips for ruffles - JaneClauss.com

On your serger attached the gathering foot and set the width and length according to your machine’s settings.  And then, create ruffles from all the fabric strips cut from the coordinating fabric.

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - making ruffles - JaneClauss.com Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - making ruffles on the serger - JaneClauss.com ruffles on the serger - JaneClauss.com Various ruffles completed - JaneClauss.com

Lay the first length of ruffles on top of the shirt starting on the outermost edge of the shirt. Pin the ruffles in place and sew.

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - pin ruffles on the shirt - JaneClauss.com Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - sewing ruffles on the shirt - JaneClauss.com

Layer another strip of ruffles next to the first, pin them in place and sew them on. You will see your refashioned ruffle shirt start to come alive!

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - sewing ruffles - JaneClauss.com

You will repeat this step for all the layers of ruffles.  Do one strip at a time and build the ruffles on the shirt.

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - shirt with first layers of ruffles - JaneClauss.com ruffles cascade down the back of the shirt - JaneClauss.com

Place ruffles down the center front. Pin them in place and sew layering the ruffles as you go.

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - topstitch the ruffles for a finished look - JaneClauss.com finishing the look - Jane Clauss

The last ruffle addition with have an exposed “raw edge” so select a decorative stitch from your sewing machine and top stitch the exposed raw edges. This will give your refashioned ruffle shirt a clean, finished look.

With the right sides of the shirt facing each other sew or serge the sides together.

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - sew the sides together - JaneClauss.com Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - sewing the sides - JaneClauss.com

If you are serging the sides together remember to set the Serger back to its original settings.

Turn it right side out and the update to this thrift store shirt is complete. It’s exciting to give a new life to an old garment and make it new to you again!

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - Finished refashioned ruffle shirt - JaneClauss.com

Refashioned Ruffle Shirt - refashioned ruffle shirt - JaneClauss.com

Jane Clauss is a 2-time Emmy Award winning television host for the Creative Living Show. She is is inventive and creative when it comes to sustainability in fashion, home decor, and tablescaping.

This post may contain affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. I only recommend products and services that I believe in and use myself. 


About Jane

Hi I’m Jane!
A television host by day and a creative maker my entire life. I spend most moments of the day thinking about what I am going to make next, whether it be in the craft room or kitchen, I always have the urge to create.

My favorite things include fitness, fashion and food and my goal is to spread love everywhere I go. Yellow is my signature color because it always makes you smile, and I love to turn the camera on you to showcase your creative genius!

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