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Transforming Your Style with Multipurpose Clothing: A Lookbook

By Maya Foxall

If you ask my friends, multipurpose clothing is my thing. Finding different ways to wear a piece of clothing and mix up my everyday pieces is so fun. Sometimes the clothing comes out looking even better than it does when used for its intended purpose!

While Instagram and Pinterest are bursting at the seams with fashion inspiration, I like to look in my closet.

I find that my clothes sometimes don’t look as good as I had expected when I bought them, or I might find myself in a fashion emergency and need formal wear in a snap. But when I look at my closet, nothing really seems to mesh together well.

So, I have perfected the skill of making the best out of what I have.

The best part about this is finding a whole new life for your closet. Turning a shirt into a skirt can lead to three or four new outfits without having to spend any more money that you could be spending on coffee.

Here are some of my favorite makeshift outfits–I hope you can draw inspiration from them!

Outfit #1

This is my favorite outfit that I created. To change up a dress or romper, add a crop top over it.

If you want to add some extra warmth like I did, you can throw on a jean jacket or a cozy sweater.

I love this outfit because it looks nice but is still a really comfortable, wearable outfit. Try dressing it up with accessories to make it perfect for a meeting or a lunch date.

Outfit #2

This second outfit is based around the green skirt, which actually isn’t a skirt at all. It’s actually a tank top from Forever 21 (yes, I am talking about those two dollar tank tops we all bought in middle school).

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I found myself in need of a pop of color, and this heather green tank top was the perfect addition to my outfit. Just pull it down to your mid-thigh and there you go, a brand new skirt.

This hack is easy to do and makes for a cute school outfit for the days that you’re feeling like putting a twist on your regular style.

I do have an important warning, however.

I realized that some tank tops are see-through depending on the color and material. This particular tank top was no exception. I would recommend nude underwear or Spanx for this outfit.

Outfit #3

This outfit took advantage of an old t-shirt dress that I found in the back of my closet. There is so much you can do with a t-shirt dress, an adding a layer on top can change its look altogether.

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In this case, my leather jacket completes the outfit.

A nice pop of color can also revamp your go-to t-shirt dress to make it look like you spent way more time getting ready than you actually did.

Outfit #4

The fourth outfit is actually just the same t-shirt dress tucked into my favorite denim skirt.

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I kept the same jacket because I thought it really helped make the outfit seem more put-together.

This is a great example of how multifaceted a single shirt or dress can be. You can use it by itself or layer it under your favorite skirt and make two outfits for the week.

Outfit Inspo #5

With fall being my favorite season, I had to add a fall-inspired outfit in this lookbook.

The skirt is actually a long tank dress that I bought at a thrift store for a few dollars. It ended up shrinking in the wash, and I couldn’t bring myself to just get rid of it.

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So, when I found myself in search of a skirt, I looked in my closet and found this. It wasn’t exactly what I needed, but I thought it could work as a dress, and it ended up being the perfect skirt for the look.

While I love that this can work well for different seasons, with a nice jean jacket and some cute booties, this is a great outfit to wear for a cute pumpkin patch photo op.

The key to transforming dresses and blouses is to look for the dresses that are an awkward length or blouses that are a little too long. You might find that they can be the perfect skirt.

Be sure to keep in mind that your dress or shirt might need to be tied a certain way. This skirt has a couple tassels that I wrap around my waist for security, but the first time I wore it I almost had no pants because I hadn’t tied them well.

Ultimately, experimenting with the wearability of clothing and patterns is fun. Remeber, no idea is a bad one. Good luck in your multipurpose fashion endeavors.

How do you style multipurpose clothing? Tell us in the comments!


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