Staying on top of the latest fashion trends doesn’t have to drain your wallet. In fact, doit-yourself projects allow you to recreate runway looks for a fraction of retail prices. A 2021 survey showed that 72% of consumers are inspired by catwalk trends, but only 36% can afford to participate in fast fashion’s buy-and-discard cycle. This is where DIY skills become invaluable for extending the lifespan of existing wardrobe items.
Through simple alterations like distressing, cropping, or adding statement details, you can reinvent forgotten pieces in innovative ways. Research shows it costs just $14 in materials on average to DIY a trendy corset belt or cropped tee, whereas retail prices start around $50. With some creative thinking outside the big box store, we can all participate in runway trends our own way. Read on to discover budget-friendly DIY tips that make staying fashion forward easy, fun and affordable!
Oversized Blazers from Thrift Shops
One of the hottest silhouettes right now features exaggerated proportions on tops. This styling creates dimensional layers that instantly transform basic outfits into current fashion statements. Sourcing from your local thrift shop yields tons of options for less to experiment with this popular shape.
Look for longer blazers in soft fabrics like wool or linen, opting for neutral or bold colors equally on-trend. To make these second-hand finds runway-worthy, head to arts and crafts stores like Michaels for embellishments like buttons, shoulder pads, iron-on patches or appliques to make it your own. Then simply push up the sleeves, leave it buttonless and pair it with slim fitting pants or leggings on the bottom for a haute couture inspired look. Finish by accessorizing with a bright silk scarf or pile of trendy gold chains to let that magnificent blazer claim the spotlight.
Distressed Denim Details
Ripped distressed denim never seems to fade from the style spotlight. Yet recreating precise new patterns on your existing jeans easily gives them a fresh perspective. Simply use sharp scissors and get creative slashing! Focus on the thigh region in particular for chic cut-outs that bare a hint of skin. Or customize the bottom hems with a raw uneven shape.
You can use everyday household items like forks to achieve that perfectly imperfect abrasion effect too. Just be bold and don’t overthink your placement too much. Then flaunt your newly refreshed edgy denim with cropped tops, strappy heels or on-trend sneaker silhouettes.
Cropped Top DIY from Oversized Tees
Another ubiquitous runway trend involves crop tops that offer enticing glimpses of exposed midriff. Take boxy loose tees made of soft stretchy material from the rear of your closet to transform using this technique. Determine your ideal crop length then lay the tee flat. Measure up from the hem at the side seams to mark your cutting line.
Use sharp fabric scissors to slice a straight line across, removing several inches of material. Then pinch in the lower side seams to create subtle shape before finishing the raw edges with bias tape. The end result? An of-the-moment crop silhouette that shows off a hint of skin. Pair with high-waisted items below to keep it chic.
No-Sew Gathered Skirt
Flirty flowing skirts with beautiful drape and shape stay perpetually fashionable. Yet quality versions command staggering price tags. Luckily, a simple no-sew technique using any bedsheet transforms the material into this breezy silhouette. Just cut your sheet to a large rectangular shape roughly double your hip measurement in width to allow sufficient gathering.
Wrap the sheet around your hips layering the narrow ends over each other at a flattering point. Mark where they overlap then stitch vertically along that line to form the skirt shape. Finish by threading a line of elastic or ribbon through the folded upper hem to cinch in that gorgeous billowy shape. Poof – your trendy new skirt looks runway-ready!
DIY Corset Belts
Corset-inspired accents continue driving major style trends across all categories of clothing. In particular, corset-mimicking belts that nip in the waistline deliver a very on-point look for every body type. Raid your closet for long ribbons, sashes, chains or ropes in materials like satin, leather or gold metal. Measure around your waist then cut a length about six inches longer to tie behind.
Layer two or three strands together, using fabric glue intermittently to bind them if needed for more stability. Then simply wrap around your waist cinching tightly behind before tying securely at the back. Voila! You’ve created an eye-catching corset belt focal point over dresses, blouses or jackets for a couture finishing touch at a fraction of the cost.
With a dash of ingenuity and perseverance, you really can stretch your fashion budget dramatically while still looking au courant each season. Follow these clever tricks for elevating basic closet items into catwalk-worthy statement pieces reflecting the latest trends. Tap into your creative spirit and inner designer to develop customized DIY projects making you feel a million bucks. Stay fashion forward without going broke using savvy tips to refresh your own wardrobe often. You’ll open up a whole new world of style possibilities already living right inside your closet doors!