In the world of ready-made clothing, ns sometimes have a difficult time to buy shirts and also pants that fit my body type without expensive tailoring. The an excellent news is, I have learned how to stretch garments to lull them into the ideal shape for me! this tips additionally come in handy if i shrink a favorite shirt or sweater in the wash and need come stretch it earlier into its proper size.

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The best method to stretch clothes is come soak the garment utilizing a cloth softener or hair conditioner and then big the loosened fibers into shape. Tools prefer waistband extenders can likewise easily big clothes. Certain varieties of cloth additionally respond well to steaming or the use of impede or weights come stretch out vital areas that the garment.

In this article, you’ll uncover seven efficient ways come stretch out and resize your clothing. You’ll additionally learn the ideal ways come stretch different cloth types, such together cotton and polyester. Finally, you’ll uncover tips for how to stop shrinking her clothes!


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Can girlfriend Make garments Bigger?

Most of the time you can quickly expand a garment by one or 2 sizes, depending on its construction and also the kind of product it is do of.

But wouldn’t that be less complicated to just buy a piece of garments in the appropriate size to begin with?

Not necessarily. Frequently when you walk shopping come buy off-the-rack garments in places like T.J. Maxx or Target, what you gain is a kind of “one size fits all” in each size.

You might think of yourself together a dimension 12, yet if you inside wall up a row of dimension 12 people, each among you would certainly possess distinct body characteristics, and none the you would certainly fit perfect in the median piece of dimension 12 clothing!

This is why knowing how to resize apparel using simple stretching methods can aid you achieve a fitted, or even tailored, look!

Of course, you may likewise need to find out some that these advice to rescue to wash accidents. It’s a rare human who hasn’t periodically shrunk a pullover in the wash by accident! The an excellent news is, you have the right to pretty easily unshrink sweaters or t-shirts the shrank a little bit in the wash.

In general, heat causes most type of cloth to shrink end time. Warm water in the washing maker or one over-hot dryer deserve to make your clothes shrink in the wash.

This happens because the process used come weave textiles usually applies a many strain to the fibers, extending them tightly as they obtain twisted into yarns and also then woven or knitted into cloth. As soon as those taunt fibers experience heat, they relax back into their original, shorter shape!

Keep in mind, though, that clothing may likewise stretch over time. Periodically this happens together you wear other frequently–think of her favorite henley that goes baggy in the elbow over the years! This can also happen if you cave up a very wet item come dry, together the load of the water will stretch the end sweaters or knit garments.

How to Stretch Clothes: 7 Methods

The easiest way to stretch apparel is come soak them in a special systems such together water and also conditioner. This will certainly relax the fibers, enabling you to expand the clothing into a slightly larger size. You deserve to reasonably suppose to stretch most clothing by at least one full size.

That said, also the best stretching technique has some limitations. You shouldn’t arrangement to expand a garment by any much more than two sizes at the most.

If you have actually a sewing an equipment and feeling confident in her abilities, friend can also learn tailoring techniques to resize garments permanently. However, a little of intended stretching regularly takes less time and also effort and also offers friend an easy means to make apparel bigger without sewing!

Check the end these seven different stretching methods and also then decide which one will certainly work finest for you!


You will discover each of this methods much easier with a small setup before you get started.

First, review the manufacturer’s label inside her shirt or various other clothes. This will tell friend two important things: what kind of cloth your garment is made of and what sort of care it deserve to withstand.

Some of the techniques defined here work finest on particular kinds of fabric, such as knits. Discovering if her shirt is do of noodle knit or woven structure will help you choose the ideal stretching method.

You additionally want to recognize if you have the right to safely expose your shirt, dress, or pullover to water. Make sure the brand doesn’t read “dry clean only!”

Next, make sure you have actually a clean bathtub or sink because that the soaking methods.

You should also go with the steps in each method to make sure you have actually all the essential tools on hand.

Finally, use this guideline to help unshrink garments to the exactly size and shape! roll out a huge section that parchment document and tape its corners come a table or your floor. Next, discover something comparable to the too-small clothing but in the correct size and also shape.

For example, if you have to unshrink a shirt, uncover a shirt in a comparable style the fits girlfriend correctly. Put this appropriately fitting shirt down on the parchment paper, and trace its synopsis with a pencil. This way, you have the right to spread the end the too-small shirts to complement the pencil outline!

A keep in mind of caution, wrapping paper, tracing paper, and also normal printing file will dissolve once wet. Also, you don’t want to usage any form of ink for this process, as it might stain her clothing.

This will certainly act together your template so the you have the right to stretch a shirt ago into simply the right shape!

Hair Conditioner or towel Softener

Since you probably have a favourite hair conditioner sit in your shower or a nicely scented fabric softener waiting in her laundry room, this technique offers a quick and easy everyday fix!

This method works very well top top knits. You can also shot it on many kinds the cotton. It additionally works top top polyester, though you will should use warmth water v synthetics, and also you may need to employ muscle come stretch this kind of cloth.

To resize a shirt or other clothes:

Depending ~ above the size of your shirt, to fill a sink, bathtub, or bucket with warmth water.Add a couple of tablespoons to a 4 minutes 1 cup the conditioner or cloth softener, and swish it around till it dissolves.Gently submerge her shirt in this solution.Soak a shirt make of thin towel for 10 minutes and also a more thickness knit for up to 30 minutes.Take the plug the end of the tub or drainpipe the water out of the sink.Gently press some of the moisture out of the shirt, and then roll it up in a towel to remove an ext water. You want the shirt damp, no soaking wet!Spread the end the wet shirt level on optimal of her parchment-paper template. Usage a slow-moving smoothing motion to stretch the shirt out until its edges enhance the theme shape.Use smooth, hefty objects to organize down the edges as you big the shirt. Clean mugs, crate food, or the type of candles that come in glass cups job-related well.Finally, let whatever sit for at least 24 hours. You desire to let the fibers dried in their relaxed, unshrunken shape to make the extending permanent.

Baby Shampoo

Baby shampoo contains milder agents than constant shampoo, and also the absence of harsh chemicals renders it a perfect an option for many kinds of material. This technique works on many knits, woven kinds of cotton, or noodle blends. You have the right to also try this on pet fibers choose wool.Fill a sink, basin, or bathtub with heat water.Measure in one or 2 capfuls of infant shampoo, depending upon the dimension of her garment.Submerge the shrunk clothing in this solution and let the soak for 10 minutes.After the soak, submerge your hands in the water and massage the cloth gently. Think of it favor kneading wet, heavy bread dough! You desire to make certain the baby shampoo gets into the fibers to work-related its magic and relax them.Lift the garments out of the solution and press few of the overabundance water out. Lay a bath towel on a flat surface and also roll increase the piece of apparel to remove more water.Finally, species the shirt or dress level on her parchment file template and also gently tug it back into shape.Use weights to host the sheet down.Let the garment air dry till no moisture remains.

If you usage this technique on a structure shirt or sweater, you might have to spend more time kneading and also gently pulling on it while in the soak. This fibers take much longer to relax and unshrink.

Vinegar and also Baking Soda

Using a baking soda soak and then a vinegar rinse can also relax the fibers in your clothing. This process involves a couple of more steps, however it provides cheap household commodities you probably have in her pantry!

That said, the baking soda and also vinegar method works finest on cloth made of organic fibers, such together cotton. It won’t job-related on synthetics favor polyester or rayon.

Measure two tablespoons the baking soda into 8 cup of hot water. Stir this for a couple of minutes until the baking soda dissolves and also you can’t view it anymore.Submerge your garment in this solution and also knead it tenderness to make sure it gets good exposure to the baking soda.Lift the wet garment out and press the end the overfill water the end without wringing that out. (Don’t drainpipe the water, together you will need it again in a minute!)Use your hands to tug ~ above opposite political parties of the garment. Because that example, organize the collar and also the hem the a shirt, and pull gently.Then place the garment ago in the baking soda mix, and also let the soak for an hour.Next, incorporate four cups of heat water with one cup of distilled white vinegar.Add the vinegar mix come the baking soda soak. You should see this mixture foam up as the baking soda and vinegar react together.Finally, lay the garment flat and allow it to air dry.

You will have to launder her garment together you usually perform after this process to remove the vinegar smell.


You deserve to use vapor from a handheld steamer or the steam setup on your iron to quickly unshrink wool sweaters or to make tiny adjustments in some cotton and also knit fabrics. You might like to have this technique as one emergency resource while girlfriend travel!

That said, the won’t job-related as comprehensively as the baby shampoo soak come reshape most apparel like shirt or dresses.

First, cave up your wool sweater somewhere through plenty of an are to work, choose on a shower curtain rod.Allow her steamer to warm up till heavy steam emerges native its nozzle (or collection your iron to its vapor setting).Keep the nozzle at the very least two inches far from the fabric’s surface, yet move very slowly over every customs of the garment to enable the steam to work right into the fibers.Gently traction the garment in every directions while the is warm and also slightly wet from the steam.Repeat this procedure as important until her sweater regains its initial shape!Finally, allow the sweater air dry. Then try it top top to view if you efficiently reshaped it to its initial size!

Stretching Tool

If you find that all of your jeans seem too small these days, you might want to try this straightforward solution because that the waistband of many pants!

You have the right to purchase a distinct tool called a waistband extender rather cheaply ~ above Amazon. Friend can likewise make your own using a ratcheting bar clamp, yet honestly, the ones because that sale online don’t expense much and might conserve you several money under the road!

First, friend will must use a spray bottle to completely spray the waistband area of her jeans, dress pants, or skirt. Or you have the right to dip the waistband right into a key of water for a minute. It doesn’t matter if you use warmth or cold water here, together the crucial is just to dampen the waistband thoroughly.Next, insert the waistband extender and also screw the extender section of it the end to the preferred length. This have to stretch the waistband tightly as you go. For jeans, this might take part elbow grease!Finally, allow the blue jeans or skirt to air dry overnight or until totally dry.Unscrew the extender and try on your jeans to see if the waistand fits!


This an approach works together an extension of any kind of of the soaking methods, such together the infant shampoo or baking soda and also vinegar method.

Simply perform all the measures for the soak as described in this article.

Then either spread out out a bathtub towel and use little weights to hold down the edges of your shirt in the preferred shape or cave up the garment if wet to permit the load of the water to pull it right into a much longer shape.

This works well if you should lengthen pants, a skirt, or a dress!

You may likewise need to usage this method on a synthetic such together polyester, i beg your pardon doesn’t easily stretch.


Some experienced dry cleaners usage a sports on the soak-and-lay-out technique called impede to develop crisp, skilled lines while reshaping a garment. Together a funny fact, knitters likewise use this technique to finish a knitted item!

This process works ideal on wool sweaters or knit shirts. Girlfriend will need special devices such together a impede mat that mirrors measurements, which allows you come resize her sweaters or shirt precisely.

Soak the garment because that 15 minutes.You do not want to wring out wool or knit items, as this can warp the fabric! Instead, squeeze out the moisture the end by pressing the cloth between your hands. Then role the item within a bathtub towel to eliminate excess water.Insert blocking wires follow me the seams of any crisp edges.Lay your wool or knit garment flat on a blocking mat.Insert impede pins around one customs apart along the within of the wire, pushing them gently into the mat in ~ the garment. Girlfriend should have actually pins holding down the whole outside leaf of the garment when you finish.For much less sharp or curved edges choose a collar, leave the wire out and also just usage pins placed carefully together to organize the fabric to the mat.Allow the pullover or knit shirt to dry fully on the impede mat.

As a last note top top this method, friend can additionally skip the soak and use a steamship to help you large the knit fabric as you work.

How to Stretch the end a Hoodie


The easiest means to stretch the end a shrunken hoodie is to use the conditioner soak explained in this article.

Remember come squeeze water the end of the hoodie after ~ the soak. Don’t wring that out, together this can twist the hoodie right into an strange shape!

Cotton deserve to suffer more than many other fabrics in the washer and dryer, which means that your noodle hoodies might shrink by a pair of sizes in the laundry.

The good news is the you can apply the conditioner soak to pretty easily expand a hoodie as much as 3 inches!

Simply follow the procedures for the soaking process, and then put the hoodie top top a bathtub towel on top of a level surface.

Spread that out, so that lies clear on the towel.

Then take host of opposite political parties of the area you desire to big out. For example, if the chest area is too tight, hold the armpit area ~ above the left and right political parties of the hoodie, and also pull firmly!

For ideal results, usage weights to host the hoodie level while it dries completely.

How to Stretch a dress to make it Longer

You can quickly stretch a dress to make it much longer using any type of of the 7 methods explained in this article. Make sleeves or the hem much longer actually bring away very tiny work because you don’t need to worry around reshaping fitted areas of your garment, such as the waist and also bust.

You do want to measure everything prior to you start to make certain you know how much come stretch the skirt that the dress. Generally, friend shouldn’t mean to make a dress longer by much more than a couple of inches.

If you want to make the sleeves longer, save a tape measure up handy, therefore you have the right to measure the length as friend work. Girlfriend don’t desire to finish up through cuffs flopping down over her hands due to the fact that you overstretched the fabric!

How to Stretch a Jacket

Depending on what type of towel your coat is make of, girlfriend can often employ a cold water soak complied with by the weight stretching technique to enlarge the jacket by a size or two.

Denim jackets occupational well with this method. Any type of jacket made of cotton or a cotton blend should stretch quite easily.

If you have actually a leather, velvet, or structure jacket. Friend will have more challenge reshaping it.

You may want to leave jackets and also coats come the professionals. These clothes usually attribute the most complex structures requiring many work come reshape there is no accidentally twisting or warping the material.

Professionals can measure whatever to a “T” and use blocking mats and also other devices to very closely reshape each area of these facility items.

Plus, numerous jackets and coats these days function special waterproof or synthetic material the does no stretch together easily.

How to Stretch Fabric

Understanding the qualities of a couple of popular species of materials will assist you know just how to large fabric. Because that example, cotton responds well to water and stretches easily. Synthetics prefer polyester usually require heat to stretch.

Polyester fibers perform not stretch at all, yet the building and construction of many polyester material creates some provide that you can use to stretch clothes. Polyester knits specifically have a nice stretchiness.

An easy method to reshape a polyester shirt, dress, or sweater is come soak it in hot water. Climate squeeze out many of the moisture, and also put it on while tho damp. Wear it till it dries completely, and also ideally, it will reshape to fit you!

You can also use the impede or weights methods defined earlier. Simply use heat or hot water to soak the polyester article first.

On the various other hand, Cotton has actually super-absorbent fibers the shrink or expand conveniently in an answer to heat and also moisture. The fence of this is that cotton can easily shrink in the wash. The upside is that you can conveniently stretch it ago into shape!

Cloth made of pet fibers such as silk or wool calls for special treatment. You have the right to reshape wool making use of the blocking method. Silk will not big easily.

Remember the you should constantly check the manufacturer’s brand inside your apparel to identify what type of cloth you’re working with before you try a extending method!

Tips to stop Shrinking Clothes

Naturally, the absolute best way to unshrink your clothes is to protect against shrinking them in the an initial place! save yourself a many time and hassle by adhering to these tips as you care for her clothes.

Use cold water in your washing machine. This tip deserve to save friend money, too!If you have the time and also patience, hand wash delicate items like a dress shirt or skirt.If you can’t handwash, use the “delicates” setting on your washing an equipment for delicate items prefer a vintage t-shirt or lingerie.For synthetics, usage the long-term press setup on your washer and dryer.Hang up cotton items to air dry whenever possible.If it claims dry clean, take it come the dry cleaners! Wool and also cashmere particularly require unique handling.

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Most the the time, you deserve to stretch your clothing out by one or 2 sizes. You have the right to employ easy at-home methods like soaking in towel softener or progressed methods prefer using a impede mat and measuring every centimeter of your shirt or dress through precision as you pen it right into place.

In general, soaking your clothes and also then using careful pressure such together pulling in opposite directions or making use of weights will certainly relax and also reshape the threads within the cloth. Various kinds of fabric react differently, though, so check to view if what your clothes are made of prior to you start!

Have you ever before accidentally shrunk a shirt in the wash? exactly how did girlfriend rescue it? leave a comment listed below to let us know!