Sunday, January 17, 2010

D.I.Y. Cuffed Prepster Shorts

Here's another DIY!!

A few weeks ago, I posted a pair of cute, cuffed self-made prepster shorts and a few of you wanted to know how I put those little beauties together. On my thrift adventure yesterday I stumbled upon these lightweight, grey slacks that fit me horrendously and saw the potential they had to be the perfect cuffed shorts. So my dears, here is a tutorial on how to make your dream Prepster shorts out of a pair of these...

What You'll Need:

1) A pair of high-waisted grandpa trousers
2) Needle and matching thread
3) Lots of pins and a pin cushion
4) Measuring tape
5) A cutting mat and rotary wheel (or a simple pair of scissors)
6) An iron

Step 1: Measure

Put your trousers on and measure how long you want your trousers to be. Once you know your desired length, add about 3 inches to the length for you to make you cuff(s). Then cut...

Step 2: Snip snip...

Lay your trousers on your cutting mat and cut at the length that you found with your rotary wheel. If you don't have these cutting supplies then just lay your trousers flat, mark your length, and cut straight across with scissors. Like this...

Throw your scraps to the side. Now you've taken a pair of dinky old pants and have completed the first step towards your new adorable shorts. This is about what they should look like...

Step 3: Pin, iron and sew your first cuff

This step varies a bit depending on the fit of your trousers and how much excess length you left. Mine had a lower crotch so my first cuff is just a teeny fold, but yours may be an inch long or so. Pin down your first cuff, making sure that the length stays even all around the leg, and that both sides are symmetrical. Once you're done pinning, iron down the crease so that the cuff lays flat. Now, sew the cuff down using a blind-hem technique. When you're all done, iron again so that everything is nice and flat.

Step 4: Pin, iron and sew your final cuff

Now that you have your first cuff sewn and ready, take a look at where you want your final cuff to hit by trying on your shorts. When I tried mine on I figured that an inch long cuff would be perfect. Next, pin down your desired cuff and iron flat. Now, flip your shorts inside out. You'll be sewing your cuff using the blind hem again, but this time from the inside. If you've never sewn using a blind hem technique here is what it looks like:

Its actually really simple (and my favorite way to do quick hand-sewing jobs). All you do is make a tiny stitch(as small as you can possibly make it) from the back of the shorts through to the front of the cuff and back. Then you leave some space (.5"-1") and do it over and over until you're finished. As you can see from my photo, theres no need to be perfect, the whole point is to make sure that you're stitches can't be seen from the front. I suggest looking up blind-hem tutorials on YouTube so that you can get a better idea of how exactly to make this stitch. Trust me, you're going to love it!

Once you're done sewing up your cuffs, remove the pins and iron, iron iron! You want your shorts to look sophisticated and pressed, don't you! No one will believe that you made these yourself!

Step 5: Try on your new favorite shorts!

Here is a look at how my new shorts turned out. I love them because the top of my original trousers were very pleated, and now that they're shorts they have a sweet, pouffy bloomer silhouette.

I really hope that this tutorial is helpful! All in all, this project took me about 2 hours. Just pop in a DVD of your favorite TV series and it will all go by in a flash. I watched Gossip Girl while crafting my geek-chic shorties. Just throw on a pair of cute tights and your favorite blouse and these shorts will be your favorite cozy piece of the season. Aren't they so polished?

Please take a moment to leave a comment and tell me how you feel about the tutorial! I want to do many more in the future but first want to make sure that they're up to your tonnish standards. Also, if you make your own pair of sweet shorties, please let me know, and better yet, send me a photo! I love love love to hear from you readers and I hope that this tutorial will inspire you. Hope you've all had a wonderful weekend!



her name is lola said...

ahhhh this is amazing! i always love your posts

Anonymous said...

these are so great! so did you actually get them from the men's department? i'm just wondering what section of the thrift store to look in if i decide to do this. thanks!

Ashley said...

Thank you so so much for posting this!! I need to get myself a rotary wheel stat!

Mind if I link this post to my next blog? I'm doing one on extending the life of your wardrobe and think this might fit in nicely.

Flavia said...

Thank you all for enjoying this DIY post!!

Jenny- you're so sweet, thank you thank you!

Anonymous- you should look in both the men's and women's trousers, as long as the waist is teeny the pants should do the trick! Good luck!

Ashley- Of course you can link the post! That sounds like a great topic, I'm constantly trying to revamp old pieces that I've neglected. Oh, and the rotary wheel is going to change your makes cutting so easy! Good luck with the project!

Thanks again all of you!

kim taylor - - - the sassy crafter said...

Fabulous idea! You know how much I love transforming old clothing into something new.

erin said...

these are ADORABLE! i saw the link to your post from kim's fb page-thanks for posting the tutorial!

Joan said...

Love this idea!! Thanks to the Sassy Crafter for Tweeting this.

Anonymous said...

Don't stop posting such themes. I like to read blogs like this. Just add more pics :)

Anonymous said...

These are adorable! Thank you so much for making this tutorial! As soon as I find a pair of men's pants that I like, I'm going to try to make a pair!

Ashley said...

Told you I would do it!!

kgmcniel said...

Tutorials are GREAT--- especially when they involve cheap materials and cute results! Thanks!

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