ReFashion - Turning Pants Into a Skirt (More Tips)

10:24 AM

Several months ago I did a blog post about how to turn an old pair of pants into a skirt.  As time has gone on I've been asked lots of questions about this process so here are few answers to the most popular questions (and common problems) I've been asked about.

I want to make a full skirt but I keep ending up with pencil skirts.  How can I get a full skirt?

Understanding the problem/Finding the Solution:
There's not enough fabric in the pants you're using.  There are ways to make the skirt fuller or you could chose a different cut of pants.  Here is a quick guide to getting the end product you want:

Slim Fit Pants = Pencil Skirt

Slim Fit Pants

Pencil Skirt

Full Leg Cut Pants = Straight Skirt

Full Leg Cut Pant

Straight Skirt

Very Full Leg = Very Full Skirt

Very Full Leg

Full Flowy Skirt

I can't walk in my skirts, they're too tight.

Understanding the Problem/Finding a Solution:
Part of the problem may be the cut of pant you're starting with (see above).  The other problem may be fabric choice.  

If your shirt is too tight try choosing a fuller leg pant. If that's not the problem then we need to look at fabric choice.  Some fabrics make great pants but terrible skirts.

I have a strong preference for stretchy fabrics (I'm addicted to comfort).  If your skirt is too tight chose stretchier pants!  Your mom's ancient polyester pants might make a perfect skirt!  Pants made with a little Lycra make very comfortable skirts! 

Stretch test your fabrics before you start this project!

Stretch test your fabrics!

How do I make a slit in my skirt?

Believe it or not, there are a million different kinds of slits (not just front, back or side).  There are lots of different ways to make a front, back or side slit.  Here are a few options

Open Slit

Contrasting Kick Pleat

Kick Pleat
I promised that I'd do a tutorial on slits and I will.  (Just not now.)  If you're a beginning sewer I suggest the open slit.  When sewing the seam of the fabric don't sew all the way to the hem (bottom of the skirt).  Turn the fabric and top stitch.  

Making an open slit
Kick pleats are REALLY easy, but more on that later - I promise!

I usually save my pro tips for the end of a blog post.  Today the tip is for my plus size sisters - So along wee ones and lean in close plus size girls!

If you're anything like me, you have a pair of pants (or 2) with what we delicately call "Saddle Holes".  You know saddle holes - that's the holes in the thighs of parts caused by thigh friction.  I know this is not something we usually discuss in polite company, but I've repaired enough pants (mine and others) to know that it happens to a lot of us!

Saddle Hole
Here's the tip mama's - don't toss out those Saddle Hole pants in shame!  Turn them into skirts!!!!!!   (After all, that's how the skirt featured at the top of this thread began!)

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  1. Hi, KL. What a great post with fabulously frugal ideas for refashioning!

    I'm dropping by from Refashion Co-Op to leave the same comment I left there in reply to your question.

    At the beginning of my recent Refashion Co-Op blog post, I state that, because the dresses I bought were so inexpensive, I bought two: one to butcher and the other to embellish (with the butchered dress) and wear.

    Hope this helps! Thank you, KL, for dropping by to leave a comment.

    Hugs and happy weekend,