January 16, 2018

DIY Hacks to Copy the Customized Fashion Trend


Off-the-rack fashion is so last year! This season, it’s all about bringing some crafty charm to otherwise basic garments. Queen of DIY fashion Miley Cyrus helped us usher in The Reign of the Glue Gun when she appeared on “The Voice” this season in head-to-toe denim customized with rhinestones that read “TEAM MILEY.” But Cyrus isn’t the only one on the bespoke bandwagon. More and more brands are offering custom upgrades, from Fossil handbags to Nike’s line of personalized sneakers.

The crafty, custom fashion trend is so hot that it’s even inspired some brand-new businesses. Trend: Bar, a “custom fashion studio” founded by two sisters, was created to provide DIY-focused fashion lovers with tons of bright, bespoke accessories for the trend-setter who’s tired of the basics. This party-based business sells fabric stickers, charms, patches, pins and appliques that let you punch up your blank sweatshirts and plain accessories with custom finishing touches.

Want a customized closet of your own? The good news is, you don’t have to drop big bucks on couture fashion to emulate this in-vogue style trend. Here’s how to do it: Start by stocking up on wholesale blank T-shirts — or jackets, dress shirts or pants, if that’s your thing — and then bust out the craft supplies. Any plain garment is easy to transform into a wearable work of art with a little bit of creativity. It doesn’t matter how you adorn, you can bet you’ll come away with a one-of-a-kind piece.

·       Rhinestone Cowboys… And Cowgirls — A little bit of glitz and glam goes a long way, just take it from Cyrus. You can use simple iron-in rhinestone letterings to get the Team Miley look or glam up your clothing with here-and-there stones for a little bit of stylish sparkle. We also love the prepped-out look of a simple dress shirt decorated with a rhinestone monogram at the breast pocket. Rhinestones come in a ton of unique styles, from stick-on garment stones to sew- and iron-on versions for more permanent applications.

·       Pin it to Win it — The enamel pin trend is super-hot. These tiny little accessories come in every single shape and size you can imagine — just check out all the options on Etsy to see what we mean — and nowadays, a denim jacket looks downright naked without one. You can create your very own customized enamel pins relatively easily, so long as you have some creative vision and sketching skills! Stick these babies anywhere you want to add some bold personality and color, just make sure they reflect your personal sense of style.

·       Punk-Perfect Patches — Pins and patches go together like peanut butter and jelly. Proof: last year, crafters hosted the first ever Pin and Patch show in New York City, and department stores started selling their own versions of the pre-pinned, pre-patched denim jackets made famous by punks in the 1980s. The patched denim trend fuses three of the decade’s super-trends: streetwear, bespoke style and all things ‘80s. While the denim jacket is the most classic place to pop your patches, you can take this trend to the next level when you patch up pants, button-up shirts and bags.

·       Studs for Days — Another super-simple way you can add some one-of-a-kind charm to your off-the-rack garments is to pepper in some punky studs. This star-studded trend is seriously coming back. Case in point: Ashley Tisdale was recently spotted rocking a studded, leather jacket, and Kendall Jenner made waves with her ‘80s-inspired black studded belt. Studs are a favorite in the DIY community because they’re relatively easy to add to almost any fabric, but look particularly rad on leather.

·       Pom-Poms, Trims and Tassels — From oversized tassel slides and loafers to mini tassel trim on cut-off shorts, there’s almost no piece of clothing that doesn’t look positively posh when peppered with poms. You can use small, rainbow pom-poms to create eye-catching adornments along denim pockets or go big with oversized poms patterned across an entire garment. The same goes for the tassel, which we think of as the pom-pom’s fringed cousin. Both of these embellishments are ideal for the bespoke boho-lover.

·       Monograms and Letters — Fashion icon Olivia Palermo made some serious waves when she stepped out in a boyfriend-style denim shirt monogrammed with her initials, and Madewell recently unveiled its own monogrammed denim jacket that got fashionistas seriously riled up (it was even sported by Emma Roberts, Mandy Moore and Diane Kruger). It’s easy to make your own monogrammed garments with iron-on lettering or a sewing machine if you’re comfortable with needle and thread.

·       Ample Appliques — Think of appliques like the grown-up version of patches and pins. These ornamental pieces are either sewn or stuck onto your clothing, but unlike patches, they’re typically much more detailed and made with more textures and colors. There are dozens of awesome and statement-making no-sew appliques on the market by brands like Trend:Bar, but you can take your DIY fashion to the next level when you make your own with fabric, interfacing and an iron.

·       Bewitching Stitching — If you’re not savvy with a needle and thread, now’s the time to take a course at the craft store. Adorning basic apparel with chic stitching is a great way to turn a piece from basic to bespoke, and the opportunities are seriously endless. You can use your stitching skills to create hand-sewn monograms, lettering and shapes on literally any kind of garment, from canvastote bags to jeans. We love the look of GRLFRND’s hand-sewn, custom jeans featuring personalized wording at each hem.

·       Metallic Trims and Stripes — Creating your own custom apparel doesn’t have to make you feel like you’re returning to preschool (but if it does, that’s cool too). Trend:Bar and other custom accessories brands have created more sophisticated embellishments for the modern trend-setter who prefers clean simplicity. Example: you can use metallic sticker patches in fun stripes, trims and shapes to create a bold look that doesn’t look quite as homemade.


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