Denim DIY: Make your own shorts!

A denim DIY - Make your own high-rise denim shorts!

Yay for denim shorts?

I have a love-hate relationship with denim shorts. Ya feel? I love they way they look but I mostly hate the way they fit. I don’t know if this is just me, but I feel like I’m constantly on the hunt for denim shorts that don’t suck. There are two issues that I always run into: either the shorts fit my legs and are too big around my waist or they fit my waist but are too tight around my legs. I guess my waist isn’t proportional to the size of my thighs because in my world, high rise shorts almost never fit both at the same time. Whatever.. I’m not mad about it.

If you can relate to my denim short struggles, it’s time to take matters in to your own hands by trying out a good ol’ denim DIY. It’s easy, cheap, and best of all — you can cut them to fit however you want!

A denim DIY - Make your own high-rise denim shorts!

A denim DIY - Make your own high-rise denim shorts!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  1. Sewing scissors
  2. Sharpie
  3. Old denim jeans
  4. A pair of shorts you like (optional)

Here’s what you’ll do:

Step one: Hit the thrift store!

A denim DIY - Make your own high-rise denim shorts!

It’s time to channel your inner Macklemore and head to your closest secondhand store to get your thrift on.

Keep in mind these shopping tips:

You want to keep an eye out for jeans that are thicker and stiffer (think old Levi’s). Try to avoid those stretchy, soft jeans that are comfy to wear but don’t make for very good cutoff shorts.

My trendiest friend Sam directed us to this amazing place in Sacramento, CA called EcoThrift. If you can find any big secondhand warehouse in your area, go check that out! This place had the biggest selection of thick jeans at unbelievably low prices  — even a few old Levis mixed in that Urban charges $50+ for😎

Also, try on everything! Don’t even bother looking at sizes because something that was a size 6 years ago might be something totally different now. Just grab everything that feels good and see if it fits!

I ended up with super cool flared jeans that were about an inch too short for me — definitely would look ridiculous if I wasn’t planning on cutting them. But check out this price tag:

A denim DIY - Make your own high-rise denim shorts!

AND, somehow, there was a 20% off deal running so they were only 80 cents. It doesn’t get any better. Thrifting, guys!

Step 2: Measure and cut!

The hardest part of this DIY is figuring out where to cut the jeans in order to make them fit you best. There are 2 methods to doing this: either use a pair of shorts you like to measure where your new shorts will be cut, or put them on and eyeball where you want them to be cut.

Method 1 – Use old shorts

This method is probably easier because it gives you a model to base your new shorts off of. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Turn your thrifted jeans inside out and fold them in half so that one leg is on top of the other.
  2. Fold your favorite shorts the same way as you folded your jeans. Then, lay them on top of your thrifted jeans, making sure to line up the waistbands equally.
  3. Use the sharpie to mark where your favorite shorts end and where you’ll cut your thrifted jeans. Make sure you mark both legs. Note! If you want to roll the hem of your new jeans, give yourself extra length to be able to do this.
  4. Cut along the line that you marked. Make sure to cut both the back and the front part of jean at the same time so that they’re symmetrical. If your scissors aren’t that sharp, it’s okay to cut one leg at a time — that’s why you marked both legs!
  5. Try them on to make sure they’re right. Make any adjustments as necessary.

A denim DIY - Make your own high-rise denim shorts!

The picture above is actually how NOT to do it… If you look closely, you’ll notice that I folded the jeans so that the front pockets were facing up but I folded the shorts so that the back pockets were facing up. Make sure your jeans are folded the same way, or they’ll come out looking super funky!

Method 2: Eyeball it

If you don’t have shorts that you feel like are really right to model your new shorts off of, no sweat. Here’s how to still make the perfect shorts:

  1. Put on your jeans inside out (it’ll feel weird, but it works!)
  2. Stand in the mirror and use your sharpie to draw where you think you want your shorts to end. Make sure to draw on both legs, front and back sides. Try to make sure the lines are at the same length on both sides by standing with your thighs together and matching the sharpie lines.
  3. Take the jeans off and fold them over so that one leg is on top of the other leg.
  4. Cut along the line that you marked. Make sure to cut both the back and the front part of jean at the same time so that they’re symmetrical. If your scissors aren’t that sharp, it’s okay to cut one leg at a time — that’s why you marked both legs!
  5. Try them on to make sure they’re right. Make any adjustments as necessary.

TIP: If you don’t want to roll the hem but want the edge to fray, don’t worry! Once you wash them the washing machine will naturally fray the edges for you.

That’s seriously all there is to it! Check out how mine turned out:

A denim DIY - Make your own high-rise denim shorts!
A denim DIY - Make your own high-rise denim shorts!

A denim DIY - Make your own high-rise denim shorts!

Let me know if you guys try this DIY! It was so fun for me and I ended up with a new pair of shorts for only 80 cents. Plus, it’s good for the environment because you get to recycle someone’s old clothes. If you ever end up with a Sunday with nothing to do, give this DIY a shot and let me know how it turns out!

xoxo,

Danika

A denim DIY - Make your own high-rise denim shorts!
A denim DIY - Make your own high-rise denim shorts!
%d bloggers like this: