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A Handmade Christmas: Poinsettia Embellished T-shirt

Note from Crystal: If you love crafts and clothing make-overs, you have got to check out Melissa’s blog. I was so inspired by it and I don’t even sew! Here’s a gorgeous shirt tutorial she shared that would be perfect for gift-giving or just making and wearing yourself for the holidays!

By Melissa from Melly Sews

This pretty embellished t-shirt cost me less than $5 to make and the poinsettias are subtle enough to wear it well beyond the holiday season.


You’ll need

  • 2 t-shirts. I got mine on sale for $2 each. One needs to be the final size for your recipient, and you should buy the other in the largest size they have to have extra fabric to cut up. Scoop or V necklines work best. You won’t use the entire second shirt, so if you want to make more than one, figure on using 1 1/2 shirts per finished shirt.
  • A handful of beads (I used 28 beads that I cut off from a 25-cent thrift store necklace)
  • Scissors
  • Needle and thread
  • Measuring tape or ruler

Cut the hem off your second shirt, then cut the shirt into 2-inch wide strips. For each shirt you’re making, you’ll need at least 2 of these strips.

Cut one end of the 2-inch wide strips open, then cut as many 3 1/2-inch long pieces of this strip as you can. You’ll need 21 of these 2-inch x 3 1/2-inch rectangles.

Fold one rectangle in half with long sides together. Then fold short sides together.

Cut diagonally across the tiny rectangle, making sure not to cut the two folded edges. You should have a diamond shape.

Now pinch the center of the diamond and put a couple of stitches through it to form a petal. Repeat 20 more times (may I suggest you have some nice Christmas music and a cup of hot tea while doing this?)

Pinch petals in half as pictured, and sew 3 together in the center to form the flowers.

Sew 4 beads into the center of each flower.

Arrange the flowers on the neckline of the shirt, then sew into place from the inside of the shirt. You want to sew the centers, and probably a few of the petal edges. And then wrap it up!

Melissa is mom to two young boys and works as a theatre teacher. She live in Texas, where she is married to a football coach and gets to spend lots of time under Friday night lights. Visit her blog, Melly Sews, for sewing tutorials and inspiration.

Do you have a great idea for a handmade Christmas gift? We’d love to have you submit your tutorial for possible publication for our Handmade Christmas series.

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