There are a few tricks to making perfect cutoffs that I will share with you here. I hope the next time you wear the knees out of your favorites or score some secondhand jeans that are too short the way I just did, you can spend a few minutes cutting them off the right way to wear all summer long
Use a pair of shorts you already own as a guide. You don’t have to, but this can be really handy. If possible choose a pair in a similar fit and style to the pants at hand.
I cut each leg separately. If you have sharp scissors, you could cut through both legs at once but that doesn’t mean you should.
I always cut an inch longer than I think I will want them and you should too. Cutting fabric is permanent. You can always try them on, decide you want them a half inch shorter and cut again.
Lay the pants flat. The inseams will be spread apart, making the top of a triangle. Smooth the pants flat, being mindful that the back of each leg may possibly be wrinkled. If you have example shorts, lay those on top, lining up the crotch seams. This is important. Don’t worry about lining up the waistbands, or the zippers. Line up the crotch seams.
Because I had a pair of shorts I loved to use as a pattern, I was able to see that the legs were NOT cut off in a straight line, but rather angling up to the outer thigh, for example. Your desired look may have a greater angle than mine did in these photos.
To finish the ends you can do nothing (my summertime uniform has no finished edge) or you can zigzag in a matching thread close to the edge. I have done this with great success for shorts that are thisclose to being too short. The zigzag keeps the fraying from washing and wearing to a minimum but allows for the amount of fray that is fashionable and desirable.
I keep the legs to use to mend jeans and for other sewing projects and you should too!
If you want to learn how to sew, check out the courses HERE!
Happy cutting, Wildflowers! Share your successes or failures in the comment section below!