DIY - Embellished T-Shirt

Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Last week I showed you how to make a very easy t-shirt so this week its only right that I show you how to embellish it. I love to embellish stuff, I always have. My very first job out of uni was designing beaded evening wear, there I learnt the art of cutting costs and making three beads go as far as they could, to be honest it broke my heart, when it comes to beading more will always be better. I haven't included in steps as such in this tutorial but I have gone through my rules of how to embellish like a pro. 
The most important step is to choose a good colour palette. What sets expensive beading apart from its cheaper counter parts is the selection and number of colours used. Cheap beading will often be one or two colours and really shiny. The more expensive stuff will have more colours included. The beauty of creating your own is you can use as many colours as you like as long as you keep them tonal they will look great together and expensive. 

I used a mix if greys, greens and golds to compliment the navy of my t-shirt (plus I had lots of these colours in my stash). Its important to mix your textures as well as colours. I started with cheaper silver and grey stones, these formed the base of my palette. I then included more expensive matt colours, like these cream and olive stones, you only need a few but the contrast of shiny and matt works really well. Finally I added a neutral colour to tie everything together. I count metal as a neutral as it goes with everything and usually choose gold over silver. Studs are perfect for this as you can get so many different sizes and shapes, they aren't too expensive and are really easy to apply. 
When it comes to design its completely up to you. For my t-shirt I went purposely asymmetric but if that freaks you out go symmetrical. But don't forget to embellish your back too. Whenever I buy anything beaded I always check the back, no beads on the back is the first way a company with cut costs so make sure when you do your own you add some details onto the back. 
Finally, I would always sew over stick, its less messy, the beads look neater and you can cut them off and use them again. It drives me crazy that shops can charge extortionate prices for very mediocre details. I encourage you to pick up some jewels, try haberdasheries and Ebay for supplies and get creative it'll take you an evening or a train journey to complete a t-shirt and is so much more satisfying the buying from a shop. Happy making! x 

Here are some other embellished projects you might like - Jewelled Collar Shirt, Embellished Cardigan and Jewelled Collar 


  1. oh so cute! I've been wanting to do a similar project - I love the positions of the gems you chose :) xoxo chelsea at

  2. Thanks Chelsea, let me know how you get on. X


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