Turn Your Jeans Into Shorts!

    It’s officially shorts season, girls! Last week, we posted a roundup of five of our favorite modest shorts you can buy right now from some of your favorite stores. If you’re a little, uh, short in the shorts department, but have plenty of jeans, you might be interested in turning a few pairs into shorts for the warmer months ahead. This is especially helpful if you’ve got some pairs that still fit well in the waist but have damage to the bottom, are too short or are out of style in the leg department. Plus, this way you can make your shorts exactly as long as you’d like them!

    It may seem easy enough to turn jeans into shorts—and it is!—but before you just go cutting a pair of jeans with your trusty scissors and calling the job done, check out a few DIY tips we rounded up to ensure you get the look you really want.

    You will need:

    • An old pair of jeans that fit well (try not to use spandex blend jeans)
    • Scissors
    • For cuffed shorts, you will also need: an iron, fabric glue


    (To make cuffed cut-off shorts, see the note at the end of the instructions.)

    1. Pin. Try on your jeans and determine how short you want them. Pin a safety pin at the desired length. NOTE: If you plan on making cuffed shorts, leave an extra 2 inches of length for folding. Take jeans off, turn them inside out and lay them flat.

    2. Cut. Based on where you pinned the leg for length, cut each leg individually across with scissors. Cut them at a slight angle (V-shape) for a more flattering fit and make sure you don’t cut the pockets! A few notes: To make the line more precise, you may want to take a ruler and lightly trace your cutting path with a pen or pencil. Also, I always err on the side of caution and cut longer. You can always trim them down to the exact length you want.

    3. Wash. Voilá! Now you have a new pair of cut-off shorts! Make sure to wash them before wearing (this will fray the hem a bit, making them look more authentic).

    To make cuffed cut-off shorts, follow steps #1 and #2 (above), and then do the following:

    • Turn the shorts right side out and iron them using the pant legs you just cut off as an ironing cloth.
    • Fold a cuff at the bottom of each leg (fold over twice) of the shorts and then press with a hot flat iron and steam. Repeat this step by ironing each leg from the inside of the shorts.
    • If the cuff doesn’t stay after ironing, run a thin line of fabric glue along the inner cuff of each leg and press flat to secure cuff. Allow glue to dry completely before wear.


    Refinery 29 also has DIY instructions for three different types of shorts, so be sure to check out their roundup if you’d like a few more options.

    Girls, do you have any plans to upcycle and DIY yourself some shorts this summer? Where did you purchase your favorite pair of shorts? And what future DIYs would you love for us to cover? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!

    Team Project Inspired
    We here at Project Inspired want to guide and inspire teen girls to be true to themselves and to God. We want to show young girls how to be people of value and confidence – how to be your own best selves – through leading a Christian life. Who are we? We're a team of girls, like you. We edit the site, we post to social media, we hang out in the chat rooms and forums. We talk with you, we listen to you, and we love you!


    1. I usually get my jeans and shorts from American Eagle, but sometimes their stuff is a little too short. I don’t like super long shorts, but I still want them to be appropriate, it’s hard to find a happy medium. I never thought of making shorts out of my old jeans, and this is a great idea for me because I can make my shorts exactly the length I want them! Plus I have some old jeans that still fit me in the waste but are either too short or a little worn out that would be perfect for this! I’d love if you could post more cheap, fun DIY projects! They’re great for long summer days when you’re stuck at home and want to get out from in front of the computer or TV screens! Thanks! 🙂

    2. I did this with a pair of pants and I added snaps to the shorts and the parts of the legs I cut off so I can just snap the legs back on when I want them. They’re great for camping when it’s hot during the day but cools off at night. I carry them in my bag and whenever I want then, I can just snap them on.

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