Day 9: How To: Turn Adult Pants into Kid Sized Pants

Earlier this week I was sad to see that my favourite pair of leggings had developed a sad case of hole-itis. In other words, my pants got holes in them – right in the butt area! ACK!

I was sad that they wouldn’t be part of my wardrobe anymore and wondered if perhaps I could salvage them for my daughter who is always eyeing my clothes.

And now I’m going to show you how I did it. Yay!

Lane Leggings

Here she is – super happy about wearing my leggings…. boo hoo…. I wish I were still wearing those leggings. Oh well. At least someone gets to wear them.

Materials Needed:

One pair of broken leggings ;(



A pair of pants the size of the little person you are going to make the new pair of pants for.

Time Needed:

Seriously – this project only took about 20 minutes.

Skill Level Needed:

If you know how to sew a relatively straight line on a sewing machine, then you can do this project. 🙂

Original Leggings

Step One:

Take your broken pair of leggings and lay them out. Try to flatten each side as much as you can and lay as flat as possible – one leg on top of the other.

Step Two

Step Two:

As shown above, I took the pair of pants that fit my daughter and lined them up the same way as the leggings and used them as a template to know where to cut. Cut straight across about 2 inches more than your template to make sure you have enough to make a waistband out of. If you don’t have enough (if the crotch of the original pair is in the way, you can always cut the tops of your leggings to make a separate waistband. (I did that with another pair of pants that I’ll show you later in this post).

Cut Pair

Here they are after I cut them.

Step Three:

Also cut a little curve into one side of the leggings to act as the crotch. You can use your template as an example of where to cut. You can see how I cut them in the photo above.

Step Four

Step Four:

You will have two legs now. turn one inside out and leave one right side out. The one that is right side out, place inside the inside out one. Match the seams and the tops. You should have the right sides together. Pin and then stitch the crotch seam. Stitch the crotch seam again. I always stitch the crotch seam twice because little people are always tough on their clothes. It’s better to make it double tough. You should have a pair of pants without the waistband sewn at this point.

Crotch Seam


Step Five:

Turn down the top to form a casing/waistband. Stitch around making sure to leave a space to insert the elastic.

Step Six

Step Six:

Measure and insert elastic. Sew elastic ends together. Sew the waistband closed. In my case, I salvaged the original elastic in my leggings for use in Lane’s new pants. But a new piece of elastic will work as well.

And voila! You have a new pair of pants for your mini me.

New Leggings

Here is baby girl wearing her new leggings. Notice she took the holey top part of my original leggings to use as a scarf. She also used the top of the other pair of pants I converted for her (below) and used it as a vest. hehehhe. She’s so creative!

So… I promised I’d show you a little bit about making a waistband. if there isn’t enough room to cut it out of the leg of your original pair of pants.

Pinks Pants

This time I used Lane’s brand new leggings as my template to make her another pair from my magenta pants that I wore out in the crotch. Because there was a worn out crotch, there wasn’t enough fabric there to cut a waistband from the tops of the legs.


Instead, I cut the waistband from the original waistband. I literally cut the top off my original pants, unfolded it and made it smaller to fit the new pants I was creating. I made sure that I unstitched a part of the waistband in order to have a space to insert the elastic. I then folded it back up and pinned it right sides together with the pants I had sewn and stitched all around the waist.

Finished Waistband

I then inserted the elastic and closed up the gap. I always stitch a box pattern into the back of the kids’ pants so they can easily tell which way to put them on.

And she loves them too!

Lane Pink Pants

I love upcycling projects! Do you?

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