The beach and pool are the perfect places to suit up on a hot day, but sometimes it takes more than a teeny bikini to get you from here to there. A cool, breezy cover can really cost you at the mall, but if you’re willing to get creative today, you’ll be styling at the beach by tomorrow with one of these 18 DIY beach cover-ups. So pull out your favorite fabrics, some old tees, and a pair of scissors and start crafting!
One piece of fabric and 20 minutes are all you need to make this clever wrap. The sewing for this version is minimal and can be done by hand, plus you get to create the fun braided straps!
This cover up is a more tailored version of the wrap. Use a sewing machine to hem the edges and create sturdy straps. Add some interest with a different color for the straps and neckline.
This simple scarf cover-up is a quick and easy project for a first-time sewing adventure. All it takes is two long scarves and a basic running stitch and you’re ready to hit the beach.
Who doesn’t love a good no-sew project? This chic cut and tied tank is made from an oversized tee. Find one in your favorite color and get styling!
A sewing machine and a basic ability to decipher patterns will make this cover-up a breeze. Choose your favorite colors and patterns of fabric and use this tutorial to get started.
We wouldn’t call this cover-up a 100% no-sew project, but you definitely won’t need a machine! Use a needle and thread to do a few basic stitches and you’ll be loving your new braided racerback tank. Bonus: this tutorial comes with tie-dye instructions!
Feeling particularly crafty? Get going on one of these fab beach towel dresses! Start with a patterned beach towel use elastic thread to add the fun and flattering shirring to the top, along with some simple straps.
Seriously, what can’t you make with a tee? The v-cut and cinched waist on this cover-up will flatter your figure. Want to dress it up? Consider adding some colorful accents with fabric paint.
Another beginner’s sewing project, this chic kimono-style cover up is a real winner. Follow the video tutorial for more in-depth directions on cutting and sewing. Note: Remember to choose fabrics that are light and breezy so that even while you’re covered you’ll be able to stay cool.
Hot glam, girl! If you’re interested in dazzling even while covered, this sparkly cover up will do the job, and it’s another great no-sew! If you’re not quite ready for a full-length number like this, simply use a shorter length fabric.
Yet another great use for one of dad’s old t-shirts, this no-sew “dress” gives off a boho vibe that’s sure to have your friends asking how to make their own.
This cut and tied beach outfit is quite similar to the last one but the differences in the cuts and ties give more of a pleated look. The tutorial also gives general instructions for a bleached “washout” for your t-shirt of choice.
Follow this tutorial for a classy cover up that can take you from beach to barbecue. Choose fabric that will allow moisture to be wicked away from a wet suit like 100% cotton or polyester blends.
Take an old skirt from frumpy to fabulous with this sewing tutorial and wear it for your day by the pool. If you can’t find the right skirt in your closet, make a quick run to the nearest thrift store! Add a coordinating tie at the waist for figure-flattering shape.
Although this tutorial is for a little girl’s version of a cover up tee, it can easily be modified for an adult by simply using a larger shirt. A basic coordinating ribbon and a few beads are a fun addition – get together with friends and spend the night crafting!
Wait a minute… no sewing, no cutting, just a bit of wrapping and tucking? Find yourself an oversized t-shirt and turn it into your simplest beach cover up yet!
This fashionable poolside poncho can be pulled together in a single afternoon. The tutorial even includes a printable pattern so there’s not so much guesswork when it comes to making specific cuts, and the wide neck allows for a bit of off-shoulder sass.
Use a couple of old tees and cut them into strips to make the braided ties for this cover up. The only sewing you really need to do is a quick “tube” for your ties to go through. The best thing about this cover up: you can wear it two different ways!
Looking for more ways to look your best at the beach this summer? Check out these 7 Hot Beach Hairdos!
Kayla Lilly is a photographer, writer, wife, and mama making a house a home in eastern Idaho. She met her mister while working at an amusement park and married him a year later after deciding there was no way to live without him. The amusement has continued as they’ve added three kids and a passel of pets to their lives while finishing college and starting a photography business. Drawing inspiration from the whirlwinds of marriage, parenthood, and the media, Kayla blogs at Utterly Inexperienced, and spends the rest of her time chasing chickens, organizing junk drawers, diapering toddlers, and photographing everyone willing to step in front of her lens.