Revamping Band Tees (Part One)

An 8123 Community blog by Trisha Pham.

Band tees have been an essential part of my wardrobe since fifth grade. My formative years were spent perusing the stacks at Hot Topic for goodies from the likes of Good Charlotte, Fall Out Boy, Panic! At The Disco, and other pop-punk/emo faves. I would wear my finds to school with pride, beaming with amusement when I unzipped my hoodie to reveal my recent score to my friends, their jaws dropping. Now that I am in my mid-twenties, band tees have become slightly less prevalent in my wardrobe (thanks, grown-up jobs). However, whenever I’m not pretending like I’m gritting my teeth in pain from walking in heels, or tugging at my skirt hem because of my irrational fear of a wardrobe malfunction, I try to find ways to incorporate my old and new band tees into my wardrobe when I’m off-duty.


Let’s face it, deep down we will always be our younger selves rocking our band tees. As we get older, we find that there may not be as many opportunities as we would like to rep our stans. Those tees we wore with pride every week often end up in the recesses of our closets; storage boxes in mom and dad’s garage; or in that laundry hamper we never quite get to the bottom of anymore (or is that just me?). Fear not! These dark days shall become brighter with these new tips and tricks to revamp and re-incorporate those beloved band tees into your wardrobe. Huzzah!



The following styles require no sewing whatsoever. These simple techniques can give your band tees new life in an instant.

Classic Cropped Cut-Off



This is probably my go-to tee shirt redesign technique. It has become my signature look in my wardrobe. At my retail job, people know me as that chick that always wears a cropped cut-off graphic tee. Honestly, this look goes with everything, so can you blame me?

  • Materials: band tee, scissors, tape

  • Instructions:

1. Lay your band tee on a flat surface.


2. Determine the cut-off point. Use tape to create a straight guideline on the front and back of the shirt. I like to designate the bottom edge of my tape as my cutting guide, just in case I mess up since I’ll actually have extra fabric to start over. Allow for some excess tape to hang off the edge, then carefully wrap and place on the other side.


3. Slowly cut along the edge of the tape, both sides in tandem. When you’re done, remove the tape.


4. Turn your shirt inside out. Grab the hem and pull sideways so that the hem rolls towards the graphic.


5. Turn the shirt back to its original form. Smooth out the hem slightly.


This blog is the first in a multi-part series. Stay tuned for the next installment!