4 Trendy Thrift Flip Upcycling Tutorials — No Sewing Required (2023)

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These thrift flipping ideas are easy, stylish, and require no sewing!

4 Trendy Thrift Flip Upcycling Tutorials — No Sewing Required (1)

By Sophie Hirsh

Nov. 12 2020, Published 3:43 p.m. ET

4 Trendy Thrift Flip Upcycling Tutorials — No Sewing Required (2)

Many creative people with extra time on their hands during the pandemic have been using that time to craft, thrift flip, upcycle, and tie dye themselves into a new wardrobe. And, fortunately for those of us who enjoy scrolling through TikTok, that’s meant there’s been primo thrift flipping content all over the platform this year.

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Not familiar with thrift flipping? Read on to learn exactly what thrift flipping means, why it’s better than buying new trendy garments, and for a few super easy, stylish, no-sew thrift flipping tutorials!

What is thrift flipping?

4 Trendy Thrift Flip Upcycling Tutorials — No Sewing Required (3)

Thrift flipping is taking a garment you buy in a thrift shop (or something you already have in your closet!), making a few creative upgrades, and turning it into something new and stylish. A thrift flip can be as simple as taking a pair of scissors to a shirt to crop it (idiot-proof), or as complicated as chopping up a garment and sewing it into something entirely unrecognizable.

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(Video) thrift flip w me (no-sew edition)! #ad

There are so many benefits to thrifting and buying clothing secondhand — it saves you money, it reduces the demand for new clothing and resources, it's fun to scour the racks in search of rare treasures, and it’s perfect for keeping your wardrobe up with the trends of the moment, since it’s often not worth spending a lot of money on a clothing item that’s just a passing trend. Now, that’s where thrift flipping comes in.

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If you’re after a specific trendy style, and having trouble finding something that exactly fits the bill, why not try to make it yourself? There are plenty of tutorials on the internet for revamping clothing into totally new creations.

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Is it safe to thrift during the coronavirus?

Even though thrifting during the coronavirus may not be an option for you right now, there are still so many ways to get materials for thrift flipping. You can purchase secondhand clothes online, rifle through clothing in the back of your wardrobe, swap clothing with friends, or go through those bags of clothing you keep meaning to donate, before turning your previously-loved garments into something new.

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Can you thrift flip without sewing?

4 Trendy Thrift Flip Upcycling Tutorials — No Sewing Required (4)

That being said, does this whole thrift flipping thing really apply to the sewing-challenged among us? Fortunately, there are plenty of no-sew thrift flipping ideas on TikTok, YouTube, and across the internet. While sewing skills can always be used to take your thrift flips to the next level (such as for tidying up or reinforcing hems), you can definitely get into a thrift flipping habit without so much as a needle and thread. All you’ll need is a pair of scissors.

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Here are four ideas for thrift flipping.

Read on for four thrift flipping ideas that will turn your old, oversized, or unfashionable T-shirts, sweatshirts, and sweaters into stylish, flattering pieces.

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(Video) 5 DIYs to Upcycle Your Clothing! || spring 2022 trendy thrift flips

Turn a winter sweater into a tube top with a matching cardigan.

This one is seriously easy, thanks to a tutorial from YouTuber Rachel Spencer, aka rachspeed. Grab a form-fitting knit sweater and a pair of scissors, and simply chop off the bottom half of the sweater. Now, you’ve got a tube top. (If it’s too big for you, try using some of the technique’s from the tutorials below to either take it in or add straps.)

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Then, cut a slit down the very center of the front of the now-cropped sweater. Fold the flaps in to see how much trimming each one needs, and then trim them accordingly. If there are rough edges, just fold them each back a little bit further, and glue or sew them down.You're basically an Instagram model now.

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Transform a basic T-shirt into a cropped cami.

Popular YouTuber Fashion Wizardry has a 30-minute tutorial video showing you several ways to thrift flip a basic men’s T-shirt into more stylish tops. As for materials, in addition to the T-shirt itself, all you’ll need is some chalk, a pair of scissors, and fabric glue (optional, but helps make raw edges look perfect without needing to sew).

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(Video) Thrift Flip | Cottagecore Inspired

The easiest and final transformation in the video shows you how to create a cropped camisole, and it just uses the bottom half of the men’s T-shirt, reserving the top half of the shirt for an adorable (but slightly more complicated) cropped blouse, which she also shows viewers how to do in the video.

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To make the cami, all you need to do is outline the shape of a cami you already have using chalk. Then, cut along the lines, and glue (or sew) the two pieces together. After letting the glue dry, you can make straps out of surplus T-shirt fabric, and glue or sew them onto the top, about 2.5 inches from each side seam.

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Turn a hoodie into a two-piece skirt and cropped sweatshirt top.

Have an oversized hoodie laying around? It’s surprisingly pretty easy to turn it into a two-piece set, consisting of a crop top and matching skirt. It requires just a small amount of sewing two straight lines, but there's a hack you can do to avoid any sewing.

Per a YouTube tutorial by IncreeseMyPiece, start by cutting a straight line across from one underarm to the other — the top half is your crop top. Then, flip the bottom half of the hoodie upside down, so the sweatshirt’s original hem becomes the skirt’s waistband.

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(Video) 3 Crazy Fashion UPCYCLING Ideas WITHOUT SEWING (But NEVER Do THIS! #diyclothes #nosew )

Flip the skirt inside out and try it on to see how much you need to take in the waist. Sew straight lines to bring the skirt together, and then cut off the excess fabric. Then, cut two small holes in the front of the top layer of your new waistband, and thread the drawstring that came with the sweatshirt (or a spare shoelace) through the front of the waistband using the two tiny holes you made, and tie a bow.

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Want to avoid having to sew the skirt? Basically, if the skirt magically fits you (or is only too big by a few short inches) you can skip the sewing, and instead, thread the drawstring through the entire waistband. Then, tighten the drawstring and tie it into a bow for a little more shape. Voila!

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Use old patches and a work shirt to make an adorable crop top.

You may think that a short-sleeved men’s work shirt is far better suited for Dwight from The Office than it is for you — but a simple pair of scissors and some patches can totally transform it.

According to YouTuber Elena Taber, to achieve this look, simply cut a straight line across the bottom of the shirt to crop it to a length you like.

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Then, take a few patches (you know you have some laying around somewhere — this is the perfect opportunity to use them up, no matter how random they are!) and attach them to the front left of the top, either by ironing, glueing, or sewing them on. Pair your new top with high-waisted shorts, and that’s fashion, babe.


How to do a thrift flip? ›

Here is a list of steps you can follow to flip items from a thrift store:
  1. Research various thrift stores in your area. ...
  2. Look for typically high-value items. ...
  3. Search for items you find online. ...
  4. Purchase items. ...
  5. Take pictures of the items. ...
  6. List the items for sale. ...
  7. Ship the items. ...
  8. Track earnings.
Jun 24, 2022

What can hold fabric together without sewing? ›

There are two great ways to attach fabric without sewing: fabric glue or a fusible bonding tape like Dritz Stitch Witchery. If you have a sewing machine, sewing is often still the fastest and most reliable method for many projects, but fabric glue or Stitch Witchery are great alternatives.

What can I use instead of sewing? ›

Fusible Tape

This sewing alternative is used to adhere fabrics together with pre-cut, double-sided strips of tape and an iron. Bonding tape is a great alternative for hems or avoiding visible stitches and the dry time that glue requires.

What to flip at Goodwill? ›

Best Thrift Store Items to Turn a Profit
  • Books and Textbooks. ...
  • Picture Frames. ...
  • Video Games. ...
  • Brand-Name Clothes or Clothing Lots. ...
  • Pyrex and Glassware. ...
  • Sporting Equipment. ...
  • Records and Record Players. ...
  • Anything With a Tag.
Jul 9, 2023

Is it legal to flip items? ›

In general, reselling is legal. The Supreme Court has ruled in several cases that if you purchase something you are the owner and can sell/resell it as you see fit. In fact, reselling is the entire basis of markets and commerce systems throughout the world.

How do you flip things for beginners? ›

Here are 5 simple steps to get started flipping items for profit.
  1. 1 – Declutter your space. The BEST place to find your first items to flip is your own home. ...
  2. 2 – Take Pictures of the Items in Your “Sell” Box. ...
  3. 3 – List Your Items for Sale. ...
  4. 4 – Sell Items and Ship Them Out. ...
  5. 5 – Repeat.

How do you upcycle clothes for beginners? ›

Try No-Sew Upcycling Techniques

Iron-on patches are an easy way to jazz up an old pair of jeans or worn elbows on sweaters. Hate the color or have an unbudgeable stain? Change it up with tie-dye! One of the easiest upcycling hacks is turning old jeans into shorts by cutting them with a pair of scissors.

How can I upcycle old clothes at home? ›

10 ways to upcycle clothing
  1. Dye it. Whether it's an old bridesmaid dress or a shirt with a stain on it, dye can give a once-worn item new life. ...
  2. Patch it. ...
  3. Embroider it. ...
  4. Cut it. ...
  5. Turn it into a quilt. ...
  6. Turn it into a tote. ...
  7. Turn it into a scrunchie. ...
  8. Give it to the dog.
Jul 19, 2022

Can you design clothes without sewing? ›

In reality, though, many designers don't or can't sew at all. Designers aren't required to know how to sew. Their job is to have the creative vision for the collection as a whole and for each piece and design detail.


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3. Thrift Flip | 2 Piece Set
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5. 50 Ways to Upcycle Jeans You Can't Fit! | DIY clothes thrift flip
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