In today’s post: Learn how to turn a pair of clearance sweatpants into an adorable sweatpant skirt with a cute front pocket! Easy sewing tutorial.
I first posted this tutorial four years ago, when my little girl was just a baby. It was one of my more successful attempts at turning an unwanted item of clothing (clearance sweats) into something I loved (cute sweatpant skirt). It worked so well that here we are years later and I decided to do it again!
So here’s an updated look at turning boring sweats into a cute little sweatpant skirt, along with some tips to make this work for older girls as well as little ones. Here’s the new version:
And here’s the old one:
How to make a skirt from sweatpants
This time of year Hanes sweatpants are on clearance at Walmart for about 3 bucks, and sometimes the baby sizes go down to one dollar! Since you can use the existing waistband, it’s really easy to turn a pair into a soft, comfy skirt.
This is seriously easy. Like under half an hour tops. For babies and toddlers, start with a pair of sweats that fits your little girl and chop off the legs just below the knee (for older girls see notes below):
Then cut the pants open along the inseam, and turn them inside out. Lay them down flat so the front and back seams are now on each side. Sew new seams down the sides as shown below. Turn the skirt right side out and hem:
I used a double needle for a professional looking hem that has some stretch (it’s easy), but you can just use a straight seam or zigzag if you don’t want to bother with a double needle:
Finally, grab one of the legs you cut off, and use it to make a kangaroo pocket as shown:
Making a sweatpant skirt for an older girl
The method above works great for baby and toddler sizes, because sweats are usually made roomy in the leg. However, if you try to make a skirt for an older girls (5+) from a pair of sweatpants that fits, you’re not going to have enough fabric to work with and you’ll end up with a very skinny tube skirt. So you’ll want to start with a pair of sweats thats two sizes too big.
The process is basically the same. Cut off the legs of the pants about an inch longer than you want the skirt to be, and cut or unpick the inseam out. Lay the sweats down so the front and back seams and now to the sides:
Now you’ll have enough room that you can cut an A-line shaped skirt to give your girl plenty or room to move. Just use a skirt or pants that fit well as a guide for how wide to cut it at the waist (remember seam allowance) and then angle out to the bottom.
Now you’ll have two skirt pieces. Place them right sides together and sew. You will be sewing through the elastic at the waistband. A serger works really well here, but you can use a normal sewing machine – just make sure you have a heavier weight needle in.
Since you sewed through the elastic, you may want to press the seam allowance to one side near the top and use a zigzag stitch to secure it. This is optional, but makes the skirt look tidier and feel a bit more comfortable on the waist.
From there, everything else is the same: hem the skirt and add a pocket as shown above.
So easy and SO MUCH CUTER than sweatpants, right?