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Refashion Old Skirt Into Sleeveless Top

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I found this old linen skirt jammed in the back of my closet and felt like it was a great refashion opportunity. Sometimes it’s best to just turn old clothes into something new. In this beginners sewing tutorial, we will refashion an old skirt into sleeveless top.

For this old skirt into top refashion, the three tiered linen skirt was perfect. However, a transformation can be applied to other skirt styles as well. For more inspiration, search through these refashion skirt into top projects.

skirt into sleeveless top before and after
Skirt into sleeveless to before and after

I felt like this sleeveless top was perfect for a warm sunny day. The tiered structure looks great as a top, and the linen material drapes nicely on the body.

Refashion Skirt Into Top (5 Zero Waste Upcycle Projects)

Choose this DIY sleeveless top upcycle, or fall in love with another design to work with. Either way, we have you covered with up-to-date styles and fashion trends.

Front view of sleeveless top from refashion skirt

Learn how to upcycle clothes so that you can transform old items into trendy clothing. By following the steps in these upcycled clothing tutorials, you will be able to completely redesign your old clothes into fashionable wardrobe pieces. It’s extremely rewarding to make your own DIY fashion.

Sideview of sleeveless top from upcycle skirt
Yield: 1 Sleeveless Top

Refashion Old Skirt Into Sleeveless Top

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Active Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours
Difficulty: Beginner
Estimated Cost: $5.00

I thought this skirt would make a perfect summer sleeveless top. I wanted to maintain the flowy look and tiered structure in this refashion skirt into sleeveless top project.

The old skirt has three-tiered layers made with a beautiful wavy flow fabric, and also features a linen fabric drawstring. I owned this skirt for a long time, so it was time for an upcycle. 

By converting the waist into shoulder straps, I was easily able to upcycle this skirt into a sleeveless top. Learn how to transform your skirt by following the steps in this tutorial.


  • Old Skirt


  • Sewing Machine
  • Fabric Chalk
  • Measuring Tape
  • Ruler 
  • Scissors
  • Straight Pins


  1. Remove the drawstring from the waistband. The soft grosgrain tape will be used to finish the neckline and armhole.
  2. Open up the side seam of the tiered skirt.
    Now you have the front and back piece for the top.
  3. To make the front piece of the top, fold the front piece in half with the right side facing each other.
    Sewing tip: Because the skirt was cut on a bias, it was a little bit flimsy. Therefore, I pinned along the folded seam to make it easier to trace and cut.
  4. Pick your favorite crewneck or regular t-shirt to copy. Fold the t-shirt in half and pin along the shoulder seam, center front and also the side seam. Lay the top along the pinned center front. Trace the neckline, shoulder seam and armhole. I used a ruler to make the side seam straight to the hemline. 
    Helpful hint: The neck drop was a little bit low for me, so I ended up raising 1 ½” up.
  5. Add ¼” seam allowance all around the neckline, armhole, and side seam. Pin along the new chalk mark to secure, and then cut.
  6. To make the back piece of the top, fold the back skirt piece in half with the right sides facing each other. Then, pin along the center back. 
  7. Lay the cut front piece on top of the skirt. Mark the back neckline about 1” down from the skirt waistline. Draw a smooth curve line to the shoulder seam, and then trace the shoulder seam, armhole, and side seam. Pin along the chalk mark to secure and cut. 
  8. To sew the sleeveless top, lay the right side of the front and back piece together.
    Then, sew the shoulder seams and side seams.
  9. To finish the neckline, flip the top inside out. Start from one shoulder seam and place the drawstring around the neckline. Begin in the middle, and sew topstitch all around.
    Then, fold the drawstring over the seam, and edge topstitch on the wrong side of the top. 
    Pro tip: Be careful not to stretch the drawstring as while sewing. 
  10. To finish the armhole, use the remaining drawstring. I cut the tape in half and used topstitch. Start at the under armhole seam on the right side of the fabric. 
    Then, fold the tape over and edge topstitch on the wrong side of the armhole. Repeat this step on the other armhole.


For this old skirt into top refashion, I used a three tiered linen skirt. However, a similar redesign can be applied to other skirt styles as well.

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