Easy DIY Elastic Waist Shorts using your own clothes as a pattern

I love taking things that I already own and use them as my pattern. Doing this let’s me invest more money into my fabric choice, since I am not buying a pattern.  Working with clothes in your closet also gives you the opportunity to understand garment construction.

Ok so let’s get started.

Supplies:

A pair of Shorts that fit you well (preferably not made from a knit fabric.)

1-2 yards of fabric depending on your size.

1″ Elastic

Coordinating Thread

So first fold your fabric in half with right sides touching and the wrong side facing you.

Lay your shorts on top like so cut out. I usually cut my fabric about 1″ bigger than my pattern(shorts). Except for the top of the shorts add an extra 2″ (this will be your waist portion) Feel free to add or reduce the seam allowance at the bottom (leg area) to make the shorts the desired length.

image

image

You will end up with 4 pieces like this.

image

Next lay two pieces with right sides of the fabric touching like so

image

Now let’s head to the sewing machine.  Pin the following area as shown below.

image

And sew with a 1/2″ seam allowance like so

image

It is very important to STOP at the crotch……DO NOT GO ALL THE WAY TO THE BOTTOM.  (Sidenote: I use single prong hair clips that I purchased just for sewing from the beauty supply.  I like them better than pins and it’s a lot cheaper than the clover clips. You can purchase 80 hair clips for $5.00.  I use pins mostly when draping fabric on my mannequin.)

Repeat those steps with the other 2 pieces. Then finish off your seam edge by serging, zig-zag or using pinking sheers. To prevent your edges from fraying.  I used my serger but any of the above methods will work when finishing your seam edges.

image

Next open the shorts up and press the seam nice and flat and smooth.

image

Ok so now with your shorts opened up, your going to lay them with right sides of the fabric touching and sew the side seams with a 1/2″ seam allowance like so

image

Finish off the seam edges like you did previously and press.

Next sew the crotch area like so

image

And finish and press the seam edges.

image

Ok so let’s hem the top and bottom of the shorts by folding by folding over 1/4″ and 1″ and press. It will look something like this

image

I add a ribbon at the back as a tag which is totally optional.

It’s time to sew the bottom hem of each leg staying close to THE edge. When sewing the waist remember to leave a 2″ opening to feed your elastic through.

image

Next up measure the elastic around your waist and cut. Put a large safety pin in one end of the elastic an a large straight pin on the other end like so  (sidenote:  The safety pin helps you feed the elastic through while the straight pin keeps the other end of elastic from getting lost in the casing.)
image

Feed the elastic into the opening

image

All the way through the casing

image

Now it’s time to sew the elastic together by over lapping an using a zig-zag stitch. Go back and forth a few times to ensure it’s secure

image

image

Close up the opening and your all done.

image

Here’s another pair I made which are in a great orange, yellow and navy blue African Print with an attached sash belt.

image

Enjoy & Happy Sewing and please feel free to ask question.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s