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Generation T: 108 Ways to Transform a T-Shirt Paperback – February 2, 2006

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Generation T: 108 Ways to Transform a T-Shirt + Generation T: Beyond Fashion: 120 New Ways to Transform a T-shirt + 99 Ways to Cut, Sew, Trim, and Tie Your T-Shirt into Something Special
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Workman Publishing Company; First Edition edition (February 2, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0761137858
  • ISBN-13: 978-0761137856
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 8.2 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (238 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #43,452 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The scope of Nicolay's how-to book is broader than its title suggests. It's a breezy, trendy call of encouragement to a young crop of do-it-yourselfers, with enough ideas to inspire experienced crafty types, too. The T-shirt is the starting point; the 108 end results—many of which have an edgy, even punk-like feel (much like the projects in Debbie Stoller's Stitch 'n Bitch)—range from slightly modified tops requiring no sewing to much more intricate fashion products like the sexy "sidewinder" skirt and the two-piece "teeny bikini," with variations suggested for many projects. Offering celebrity tidbits ("In the 1950s and early '60s, James Dean, Marlon Brando, and Elvis Presley delivered a triple dose of T-shirt sex appeal onscreen and onstage, turning the garment into an icon of rebellion") and "tee trivia," a condensed history uncovers one of the world's favorite pieces of clothing. The book starts with an introduction to design terms, tools, measurement, materials and stitches, making it accessible to beginners. And because the author—who got into transforming Ts by gathering friends and hosting "Brooklyn Tee Parties" to resuscitate old T-shirts—is budget-conscious (and so are all the projects in the book), anyone can afford to experiment with this kind of fashion design. (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Book Description

The T-shirt is the centerpiece of a girl’s wardrobe. But even better, that same T-shirt is a blank canvas just waiting to express the personality and creativity of its owner. You can cut it, sew it, twist it and turn it. You can deconstruct it, you can reconstruct it. Recycle it, resuscitate it, refashion it, re-invent it. Make it punky, make it funky. In the hands of Megan Nicolay— who knows the DIY pride of accomplishment and the pleasure of making something chic and unique (and cheap)—the T-shirt is like fashion ore, as she shows how to turn any ordinary, preferably well-used T-shirt into a halter, a tank top, a peasant blouse, or, for a total transformation, into a T-skirt. Or a hat. Or leg-warmers, a drawstring purse, an iPod cozy. Even a patchwork T-blanket.

In 108 unexpected, easy-to-follow projects, this pied piper of DIY shows first how to tee off with the basic materials plus add-ons (ribbons, lace, safety pins) and techniques (stitching, hemming, gathering). Then come recipes: 13 projects for customizing a T-shirt (i.e., doing everything to it you possibly can and still be able to call it a T-shirt); 21 projects for tank tops (less shirt, more style); and 14 projects for tube tops and halters (even less shirt and more style).

There’s the Two-Tiered Peasant Skirt, the Bow-Tie Beanie, the Sweet Dreams pillow. Plus gauntlets, pot holders and tablecloths, pillows and braided rugs. Not a DIY expert? No problem. More than one third of the projects are “no sew,” so anyone who can wield a pair of scissors can put a personal stamp on her wardrobe. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Megan Nicolay has been traveling around the country like a pied piper of DIY, giving workshops and consulting at craft events since the publication of her bestseller, Generation T. She is a founding member of the Department of Craft, a New York City-based craft collective, and lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Customer Reviews

This book has wonderful and fun ideas to make an old t-shirt new.
Brenda Schero
I can't wait to get the second book now and start on even more new projects!
The instructions and diagrams are very clear and easy to understand.
M. Norman

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

173 of 175 people found the following review helpful By J. Peplinski VINE VOICE on April 23, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have a long history of buying lots of craft and instructional books, flipping through the pages once, then sticking them on a shelf while I try to figure out how to do my own thing. Not so with this book! I can't remember another book I've ever bought that was so darn inviting that I sat down and made lots of the projects the same day!

The instructions are VERY easy to follow, and they don't assume that everyone knows how to sew or has a sewing machine (though I do, which makes them even easier). She even explains alternate methods for cutting if you don't have access to a decent pair of scissors. The book is truly accessible to anyone with an old shirt! Plus she's got some really great ideas here, and so far everything I've made (about 10 of the projects over the course of 2 days) has turned out perfectly adorable. I do not exactly have a halter-top body, but somehow her designs have all looked fabulous, I don't know if she's some kind of genius or alchemist or what!

Since we seem to be stating our ages here, I'm 34 and will proudly wear many of these designs myself!! Though some of the sexiest tops and bikini bottoms will probably not be worn outside the house!

Just one note, you may want to take the sizing with a grain of salt when the design calls for a "Fitted T-shirt (Size Small)." Hate to tell the authors, but some of us find a Size Large to be plenty fitted! Just use your own common sense when it comes to that and you'll be fine. In fact, one of the things I love about this book is that I used to be a XXL and after losing weight I found many of my old favorites were way too boxy to even wear for sleeping. This book has given my old wardrobe new life! Not only do I not have to toss my soft old shirts, but they look cuter and sexier than ever before. I LOVE THIS BOOK!
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63 of 64 people found the following review helpful By Nadira Jamal of the Improvisation Toolkit on August 3, 2006
Format: Paperback
I ordered this book after some frustrating shopping for detailed tees (I found very few that were flattering, interesting, and fit well, and what I found was EXPENSIVE).

I am thrilled with this book. Here's what I like:

- There's a remarkable variety of looks represented in the projects. Some scream punk, some hint at it, and some look like you bought it in a pricey boutique.

- The quality of the detail is excellent. A lot of DIY tees look like a six-year-old went through the laundry basket with a pair of round-tipped scissors. With these designs, it's very clear that you _meant_ for it to be exactly as it is, even when it's full of holes and raw edges.

- The projects are remarkably easy. They're all based on cutting, pinning, tying, or easy sewing. And at least one of them is undoable; you tie but don't cut.

- this is not just for 15-year-old tarts. The patterns vary in edginess and bareness, so most people should find something they're comfortable with. Several would look equally good on my 17-year-old cousin, on 26-year-old me, and on my 55-year-old mom (who is as gorgeous and un-frumpy as they come, but never inappropriate for her age). Plus, a lot of the barer designs would look great layered over a tank top for a more modest look.

- a lot of the tee and tank designs are bra-friendly, and many could be adapted to be.

- the instructions are very clear (with lots of illustrations), and they are very technique-based. So once you make (or even understand) one project, you can take those techniques and branch out into your own designs.
Read more ›
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72 of 74 people found the following review helpful By Tammy on March 16, 2006
Format: Paperback
I am 38, my daughter is 17.....we both love this book! And while I may never wear most of the designs in this book, I like them all and will wear some, my daughter and her friends can use them all.....the ideas are great, explanations clear, and can be accomplished by even a beginner. I have many years of craft and hobby sewing experience, which I think helped in some of the projects I made, but weren't necessary. The only problem I have encountered was the sizing in the bikini pattern, I made it as directed for my daughter, and it was too small, we passed it on to her tiny friend, and she thought the top too small, as well, so, perhaps enlarge the pattern measurements and make a test top of paper before cutting up that cool tshirt.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Adam Zeidel on March 18, 2006
Format: Paperback
I was surprised to find that Ms. Nicholay's (?) book was a fantastic resource for even those of us who are not experts at DIY. I'd been looking for a fun, informative, easy-to-follow way to get into DIY crafting and fashion - this book is it.

I've gone through many of the designs already and have many more to go.

Here's to hoping there's another addition soon.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Marion VINE VOICE on February 19, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great instructions on how to make each project and SO many wonderful things to do with that closet full of old t-shirts that you just can't toss out due to the memories attached to them! I love the idea of the t-shirt quilt and plan to make it.

Oh, that I would have had this wonderful little tome in my hippie days! I'd have been the Queen of T's!

Buy this book if you like to sew and love to dress individually.
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