I have an issue with throwing things out, especially clothes. When I go through my (extremely messy) closet and find something I haven’t worn in years, the logical solution would be to donate it or give it away to a friend. And yet, I always think I can transform it into some brand-new, one-of-a kind piece of clothing that looks like I bought it at some boutique. It honestly baffles me that people spend hundreds of dollars on a pair of shorts just because they have some cute design on them. When I was younger, my mom literally refused to left me buy those types of shorts, saying that I had “perfectly good shorts at home.” But I wanted to be one of the ~cool~ girls who wore ripped denim because it looked so effortlessly cool. So I learned to make them myself, which meant upcycling and doing DIY projects on my jeans.
Even though some things don’t work when it comes to upcyling, jean shorts are fun and surprisingly easy. There are so many things you can do to them, beyond just ripping holes and distressing the denim. You can dress them up, dress them down, add glitter on them that will eventually get everywhere, etc. I have drawers filled with random pieces of lace and cool fabric that I hope to add to other pieces of clothing in order to make them look more “me,” whatever that means. I found some awesome (and easy) tutorials on how to revamp your shorts for the summer. Check ’em out, and start getting creative!
1. Try an easy embroidered pocket.
This is so simple but so cute! It really adds something unique. Bonus: use multicolored thread for a tie-dyed look.
2. Leopard print shorts for when you’re feeling “wild” (get it?!)
I’m not a huge fan of animal prints BUT this tutorial was so easy that I had to put it in.
Sequins makes everything fun. All you need for this tutorial is some fabric glue and sequins, which are both easy to find.
4. Channel your inner Hello Kitty with some bow shorts
These look complicated, but are actually very easy. The girl who made them only spent $5!!!
5. Add lace to make your shorts look adorable
Another example of an easy project that can make your shorts look brand new (and super cute).
6. Use old shirts to make a patterned hem and pockets!
The best part about upcyling is using old things you thought you would never wear again, like a shirt with a stain, or something you shrunk by accident, and re-purposing them into something unique, like these amazing shorts.
7. Bleach and design shorts with a sharpie
When you’re dealing with bleach, things can get a bit messy. But this tutorial gives you specific directions to make sure you don’t mess up your shorts like she did the first time!
8. Add some cute fabrics to one side of the shorts for a very different look
The best part about these shorts is that you can choose any kind of fabric you want to completely transform them.
9. Tie-Dyed your shorts!
To me, nothing screams ‘summer’ like tie-dying your boring clothes so that they look ~magical~.
10. Flower lace trimmed shorts
A super-summery design that can be paired with heels or sneakers and be equally as cute.
11. Easy scallop shorts
All you need is a pair of scissors for this cute and elegant design!
12. Use extra fabric to make cute pockets!
These are my favorite! Whenever I outgrow or stop wearing a cute shirt, I will sew some of the fabric to my pockets for an updated look. Super easy!
13. Get lunar with moon phase shorts
This is perfect for black or dark-wash denim.
14. Paint some adorable flowers
These might take a little more time and effort, but the outcome is totally worth it.
15. Re-purposed necklace shorts
Use an old necklace to seriously improve some old shorts!
16. Watermelon shorts
The watermelon design is perfect for summer, and so cheap to make!
17. Use flowers and dye for a completely unique look
This eye-catching design is made by using real flowers and dye!
18. Painted polka dots
Another simple yet effective wardrobe update that will work on any pair of shorts!
Have you tried any of these upcyling projects? Which one did we miss? Tell us in the comments!