Jeans to Skirt Transformation

Eden has started a one day a week homeschool enrichment program! Xander started his second year (the other two kids don’t want to go) and it’s great to be able to drop them off, let them do art, music, PE, hands on science, computers, etc and then pick them back up. It’s one stop shopping.

Speaking of shopping, they do require a basic uniform. Khaki or navy on the bottom, solid colors or school shirt on the top. No problem for Xander since he owns more dress pants than the average 11 year old. He owns a suit, for heaven’s sake. But Eden has nothing. I went to my favorite department store to check out uniform skirts for her and decided she could just wear Eli’s hand me down pants for that price!

Sure, I’ll have to cinch them up and they’ll be baggy in all the wrong places but I LIKE sending my kid out in the world looking like she got dressed at Goodwill in the dark.

Maybe not.

So using my can-do attitude and a quick google search, I found out that she can have uniform skirts and I can use Eli’s hand me downs.

That’s right, people. I made a skirt using khaki pants. They were carpenter pants and I’m not sure carpenter skirts are in, but Eden can rock anything.

If you want a short skirt, cut the legs off below the knees or use shorts to start with. If you want a long skirt, do not cut the legs.

Step one is to cut the inner leg seam all the way up. Some tutorials recommend using a seam ripper. Having done it both ways, I recommend a seam ripper if you have a really great movie to watch and don’t care that you will spend more time ripping seams than you do sewing. Otherwise, just cut them out.

Step two is to cut the crotch. This requires a seam ripper or you’ll have holes in the naughty spots.

Seam rip the front open up to the zipper. Rip open the back up to the start of the waist band.

Step three involves the step that no tutorial clearly explained. So I’m going to explain it, you’re going to say “that wasn’t very clear,” but then when you sit down with your jeans, you’ll say “oh! Now I get it.”

Take the seam ripped crotches and lay them flat. Pin them in place and then sew them in place.

Pinned front

Pinned back

Sew very close to the edge so that you do not have any flapping. You can turn the seam in for a clean look or out for a messy look. Your choice.

Your jeans will now have two empty triangles between each leg. We are going to fill them with fabric.

For Eden’s school skirt, I simply used extra from the legs I had cut off. Children’s clothing is super awesome this way. But for my long skirt, I needed to add fabric.

Sew up each side and repeat in the back. The back is optional. Depending on the skirt, you may want to leave the back open as a slit.

Hem to finish and now you have a hand me down skirt that once was a pair of pants.

Here is a variation:

I wanted to try this out and the only pair of toss-out jeans I had left were in pretty rough shape. Oh, well. Ignoring the permanently embedded dirt, I added panels to the sides as well for a much, much fuller skirt. I sewed all the seams out and then frayed them. It’s super cute and almost a shame how gross the jeans are.

I’ve made several of these but they’re all the same basic thing so I won’t clog this post up with more pictures HOWEVER I must show you this one. Freaking pirates. Love.them.

And here they are on their first day!


6 thoughts on “Jeans to Skirt Transformation

  1. Cute! Eden can rock anything! One of the pairs of jeans I got out of the back of the closet that fits now is really shorter than I like them to be. I see the jean skirt i always wanted in my future.

    • I made a skirt out of some brown shorts that rode up too high in the crotch area. Talk about a classy look. I don’t usually wear jean skirts myself but using khaki/linen/cotton shorts works just as well. I’ll try to get some picture of the non-jean skirt up soon.

  2. I really shouldn’t use the sewing machine for anything but the quilt that was supposed to be done for Christopher’s bday in March. But I do have that one pair of jeans that don’t fit….. (ha! that ONE pair).

    Did you have problems with your machine sewing through the tough denim?

    • I haven’t had any issues with the denim. The main concern I usually have when sewing denim is going through the thick seams but this is rarely a problem in this project since you pull most of those seams out.

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