Jeans to skirt up-cycle

This is a big post it may make you go a little cross eyed.

Don’t run away.

Because in the end you will have a great, easy to make skirt!

Or, if you love them as much as I do two skirts.

To start you are going to need an old pair of jeans.  Ones that still fit around the tummy but are to short or have holes in the knees.  And the fabric to make the skirt out of.  I am showing the pink skirt here.  I used handkerchiefs in both of these skirts.  I have made it from regular fabric as well.  The original insperation for this skirt can be found here.

Cut your jeans right above were the crotch meets. Make sure you don’t cut the pockets.

Iron the handkerchief  in half and cut along the crease.

Pin the sides together and sew.

Iron seams.  Now you have your tube.

Now if you are paying attention here you will notice that I put wrong sides together and then pinned and sewed.  DO NOT DO THIS!

Or your skirt will look like this.  We all make mistakes! All of the following photos are wrong sides together so if it looks a little backwards you know why.

On a side note the universe of crafting has been against me all week so I am happy that I got it together at all!!!

So with RIGHT SIDES TOGETHER you will start to pin your pleats.   Your fabric will be much wider than your pants top.

I like to start with one pin in the front and back middle and one on each side.  These are easy to find on your pants because all the seams will be there.

Once you pin in the middle you are going to start folding your fabric to make your pleat.

Now lets take a second to give you a disclaimer.  I am not a seamstress!  I don’t know the proper way to make a pleat.  I did these by trial and error.  If you are a seamstress and you would like to let me know how to make a proper pleat please do so in the comments!

This is with one pleat. On each side of the middle.  I found it much easier to make it come out even if I did one on each side.

Folding your fabric like this for the second pleat you will make 4 in front and back.

Pin the heck out of it!  You don’t want any of the layers shifting and not getting sewn.  Yes,  I did that too.  It is a simple fix just unpick and re pin and sew.  But it is nice if you don’t have to.

Iron them.  It sews easier and lays nicer.

Sew away!

Remember to take your pins out and hold your pleats together as long as you can.  Also make sure your pockets are out of the way.  Yep did that too.  I used my seam ripper a lot the last few days!

I don’t have a serger so I zig-zaged all the seams to finish them.  Of course you could do either.

When I finished all my work I noticed their was a hole in my fabric/handkerchief!!!!

Good thing I had some cute applique cupcake I could put over it!

Back and front turned out pretty good.  Nice finished edge.

Then I thought I like the way that jeans fray.

So I cut these jeans the same way.

Then putting the wrong side of the jeans to the right side of the fabric pined and sewed the same way.  Sewing on the fabric and staying as close to edge of the fabric as you can seemed to be the easiest way to do this.  Yes your jeans fabric will probably be crooked, that is ok.

Just cut the jean along the seam to even it all up.  Make sure you don’t cut the seam.  I then made one seam a 1/4 of an inch higher.  Then I ran one down the middle just because I liked the way it looked.

A cute alternative to shorts.  And lady bug loves skirts.
If you have questions e-mail me or leave them in the comments and I will do my best to help.
Thanks for hangin’ out.

I will be linking up to these great party’s and the others in my side bar.

The Shabby Nest


  1. Anonymous says:

    Great idea! So cute with the bandanas and raw edge of the jeans. I lost the bag that had some jeans I was trying to make into capris and an old dance dress I was making into a dress up skirt. I think it got taken out as trash…boo hoo Jeni

  2. I so love the bandana!! I’m going to make some of these!! Thanks for sharing. I am happy to be your newest follower. Please stop by for book club if you’re interested–connie,

  3. Cute idea! you’re one talented lady 🙂

  4. Sounds like you had quite a day getting through these, lol. Poor you (that’s what my sewing crafts are like too). Turned out great though. Very cute.

  5. Thank you very much Mrs.C.

  6. They are very cute! I bet Abbigale loves them.

  7. Adorable! Not to mention very cool!

  8. It is very fortunate that the hole in the pink fabric was in such a cute place. Whew! I love how the finished skirts look! Thanks for sharing!

  9. What a great tutorial! Visiting from Sugar Bee’s Take a Look Tuesday.
    {Accuquilt Giveaway} 

  10. Love this! Thanks for the tutorial. Following you back 🙂

  11. Great recycling idea! Your girls look like they really love them from the pictures! (My seam ripper is my best friend too!)

  12. Love the upcycle! They turend out really nice.

  13. Way fun skirt idea! Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving such nice comments! It is a good feeling to upcycle things.

  14. Oh so adorable! I have a bunch of jeans that my girls have torn holes in. This is the perfect solution.

  15. Hi there, have just joined your blog. I tried to make skirts from jeans when I was a poor uni student – wish I’d seen this back then because these are far nicer! Anna x

  16. What a great idea! Love it! Thank you so much for linking up!

  17. this is the cutest idea! give me an idea for transforming one of my own jeans!

    following thru the finding friends hop. my blog is mainly a style blog, but i’m a mom of two and love connecting with other moms 🙂

  18. George Wells George Wells says:

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