Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Joggers to Shorts Upcycling tutorial

Well with a sniff of Summer last week I thought I had better get my skates on with the kids summer wardrobes. My middle son had outgrown a couple of pairs of jogging bottoms that were fine on the waist but were rapidly becoming "Harry half masts", I had to take them out of circulation to stop him wearing them so on the upcycling pile they went. Last week they were changed from the unwearable to wearable again with a little help from a pair of scissors and my sewing machine.
Here is how I did it.

1) First lay out your joggers or jeans or other trousers you want to cut down to shorts folded flat down the centre seam , with the crotch pulled out and make sure each leg and the crotch and waist band is lined up with each other so your legs end up the same length, as shown below

Joggers upcycling supplies

2) Use chalk or tailors chalk or a tailors pencil to mark the length you want your shorts to be, use an existing pair that fits if this helps and draw across the legs of the trousers, if you are not sure go longer they can always be cut shorter, but you can't stick it back on once you have cut it.

3) Mark another line 1 inch below this , this is the line you will cut along (this allows for a hem allowance), and cut as shown below, making sure everything is still lined up before you cut.
Joggers upcycling tutorial

4) Open up your shorts and look to see if they look even and if possible try them on the intended victim, remember they will be an inch longer approx than you want at the moment you need that for the hem allowance.

5) Now turn the cut off trousers inside out and iron the bottom edge up 1/2 inch and then 1/2 inch again and iron so that the raw edge is enclosed , you should have the first chalk mark now running along the bottom edge of the shorts.

6) Pin the ironed hem down and use a straight stitch and sew all around the bottom hem of the shorts using a 3/8 inch seam allowance, don't forget to use a jersey/ball point needle if using a stretchy fabric like jersey joggers.

7) Et voila new shorts
Finished upcycled shorts

You could skip the sewing part if you like, as denim frays and looks good this way, and jersey doesn't really fray ,if you do this cut along your first line,you won't need the extra inch for the hemline, but I prefer the neatness of hemming.

Although it's very tempting don't go cutting all your trousers down to shorts, or you will have very cold legs come Autumn and probably through the Summer too if you live in the UK.

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