Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Turning 'mom shorts' into bloomer shorts

Ever find the cutest shorts at the thrift store, they're high-waisted, fit you perfectly in the waist and hips, but you can't stand the length? Well here is the perfect tutorial for you. Turn a pair of "mom shorts" into cute short bloomer style shorts. 

You will need:
  • tape measure
  • scissors
  • elastic
  • sewing machine
  • matching thread
  • chalk (optional)
  • 1 large safety pin
  • sewing pins

Before. Definitely need something done. These may have been super cool in 1992 on my mom but they aren't now. I bought these for $1 at a thrift store in Columbia, South Carolina. I considered giving them back to Goodwill yesterday morning, but couldn't bring myself to get rid of something that fit so well in the waist. And I just love the pleats and belt loops! Solution: cut them up and make them pretty.

I started by cutting off just the bottom cuff. Depending on the length of your shorts, you may want to leave all the fabric, and maybe even rip out the seam. With the hem I am showing you how to make, you will need a 3 1/2" seam allowance. 

Taper the leg shortly. I showed the path of my seam with blue chalk since the thread is so hard to see. Start at the bottom of the pocket and taper them slightly.

Cut excess fabric.

Sew a 1/2" single fold seam on each leg. This seam is only so that there is no raw edges on the inside of the seam. It will not be visible on the outside of the shorts.

Fold the leg in 2". Sew 1 1/2" from the edge. 

Fold the leg up 1". Pin all the way around. The seam along the edge of this cuff should catch the seam you sewed using a single fold hem.

Leave a one inch opening to insert your elastic.

Measure your upper thigh. Take an inch or two off that measurement and cut two piece of elastic that length. Attach a safety pin to one end and thread through your cuff.

Remember to be sure you anchor the other end of your elastic so you don't lose it halfway through. That can be very frustrating.

When you get is threaded all the way through, sew the end of the elastic together.

Sew the one inch opening closed, and be sure not to catch the elastic. Repeat this entire process on the other leg. Before top stitching the cuff, be sure both legs match in length and inseam. You don't want one leg shorter than the other.

Ta-da! New shorts. If only I can keep my eyes open while taking photos. Hehe.

From $1 mom shorts, I'm very pleased with the end result. Super fun, flirty, and so ultra feminine. I can't wait to turn more of my shorts into these bloomers. AND! Start to finish, these took about 30 minutes!

Questions? Comments!

Related Articles


  1. that's a cute itsy bitsy shorts! And it's pink!


  2. damn I wish I could sew... I have zero confidence in that department....but girl you look great!! Adding shorts to the shop anytime soon? :)

  3. You make it seem so easy! I am one of those girls with 2 left hands.. I love how you altered those shorts, they look so pretty. :-)