How to Make a Hippie Vest

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Hippie vests come in many styles and varieties.
Hippie vests come in many styles and varieties. (Image: Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images)

Whether you are wearing a hippie costume for Halloween, a costume party or just for the fun of it, a staple item for your retro getup is a vest. A vest can be worn over almost any T-shirt, dress or top you choose for your costume. You can create a hippie vest with materials you probably have right at home, and the easiest way to make one is to start with a T-shirt.

Things You'll Need

  • T-shirt
  • Ruler or tape measure
  • Scissors
  • Pen or pencil

Lay an old T-shirt out on a table or flat surface with plenty of space to work. Have all your tools within reach.

Measure the T-shirt horizontally, from just under one sleeve and across the shirt to the same spot on the other side, just under the armpit. Write down this measurement.

Divide the number you got in step 2 by two. Measure this length across the shirt from that same point under the armpit and make a small but visible mark with the pen or pencil. This is the center point of the front of the shirt, which will help you determine where to cut it.

Use a pen or pencil to draw a straight line from the spot you marked in the center of the shirt up to the collar and down to the bottom. This will be the front, open part of your vest. Cut along the straight line you just drew.

Cut the sleeves off the T-shirt, removing the seams as well. Also cut away the collar of the T-shirt, removing those seams as well. This should leave a cleaner and finished look after you're done cutting.

Make fringes along the bottom of the vest, cutting 1/4- to 1/2-inch-wide strips 1 to 2 inches long. You could also fringe other parts of the vest.

Run ribbon, glitter, buttons or other crafty clothing items along the edges or sew them anywhere on your vest or simply leave it plain. The look is all yours.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use a pencil to mark material that is lighter in color, as it shows less and washes out of fabric easily. Do not use permanent pens or marker as these can stain the fabric.
  • Be careful not to cut up your vest too much. Once it's cut, you cannot repair. Refer to old photos or costume photos for fringing ideas.

References

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