April 18, 2011

Faux Chenille Capri Pants

The weather in Texas is getting pretty warm hot so making my kids wear pants to school is just down right mean…at least that is what my kids say.  So in order for me not to be a “meanie”, I have cut and refashioned  most, if not all of their jeans into suitable attire for the Texas heat. 

For this tutorial, I have applied the concept of faux chenille to a pair of my daughter's jeans. For a quick tutorial on the faux chenille concept, I refer you to Dana from Made (here). Although the tutorial that Dana has is for a baby blanket, the concept of sewing lines and then cutting them "open" is the same for these jeans. 

These are two pairs of jeans that were recently cut.  The pair on the top was cut above the knee and then hemmed using a zigzag stitch.  I used gold thread to match the gold thread in the cute floral embroidery. Now, see how the pair on the bottom is just, well, just plain and simple. I took it from plain to WOW...much better. 

So let’s jump right into a simple and easy way to spruce up your jeans, or capri pants or shorts or skirts…anything really. First, cut your pant legs a little above the knee. 

Now look at the inner and outer seams. You want to use a seam ripper to open the seam that does not have the double stitching on the outside.  If I lost you, just look for the seam that looks like this picture...

and rip open that seam.  Since my seam was on the outside, I opened it up to the pockets. 

If your seam is inside, then open right before the crotch. This piece of the pants will be referred to Part A.  Now, do the same for the pant legs you cut off. This leg piece will be referred to Part B. 

(I used scissors to cut open the pant legs because the legs were flared giving me more material to work with.)

Then place Part A (wrong side up) flat on a table, first.  Place Part B (wrong side up) overlapping Part A. The seam ripper is touching Part A. Don't worry if the seams don't line up.  Trust me, it won't matter in the end. You want to make sure that the pieces overlap each other at least 8 inches.  Pin these two pieces together; just enough to hold it together to get it to your sewing machine. 

Now just sew straight lines about an inch apart making sure to sew both pieces together. I sewed several straight lines and then went back and did a zigzag stitch just for decoration but you can skip this part.   

Once you are done stitching, VERY CAREFULLY, cut a straight line between two rows of stitch making sure to ONLY cut the TOP layer of your pant leg. 

Now match up your hem lines...

 and starting at the hem, pin up the sides and sew your pant leg closed.  (I also finished off the inseam with a zigzag stitch and it's up to you if you want to skip this step.)  It is easier to make adjustments when sewing up from the hem than having your hems not match up if you start from the top and work down.

Just follow the previous stitching that you picked out earlier.  Don’t worry if the stitching doesn't line up, it won’t matter once the pants are done.  What is important is for the hems to match up. Trust me.

One leg down…one to go. 

Repeat the same for the other leg making sure to measure the finished leg against the 
unfinished one to get the correct length on both legs. 

Once both legs are finished...

wash the pants...and trim off the frayed hairy mess.  Below, the top leg is a frayed mess while the bottom leg is well groomed and trimmed.  And the added bonus to this is that you don't have to hem the bottom!

Here is the final, finished and polished capri pants.  
See how even though the fraying doesn't line up, the pants still look hip and fashionable. 

Back view 

Fray goodness....

I hope that all this is clear as mud to you.  If you have ANY questions, just email me and I will try to answer as best as I can.  Also, I would love to see pictures of your refashioned jeans using this tutorial. 

Thanks, Carmen


~Beth D. said...

awesome! I love redoing my jeans!

Angie @ The Country Chic Cottage said...

What a great idea!! Thanks for auditioning for OMTWI!

June@I will craft said...

Cute idea. I just tried a small faux chenille quilt - my fist quilt ever. I love the look of the jeans. Great job.

Jan said...

Fantastic idea...you are very creative! You've got my mind spinning of how to apply this to other things.

New follower. :)

amber @ barbwired said...

Super cute idea!

casserole said...

This is such an awesome look for jeans!! I linked to your tutorial on Craft Gossip here:

Warm regards,

Marisa said...

Very interesting. I was skeptical at first, but I think they have trend-setting potential. Nice job!

Anonymous said...

This would be a great technique to use making a purse too!

Angela said...

Thank you for joining me at my blog party Simply Creative! Stop by this Thursday and we'll party again!!


hwg2g2 said...

Way cute I am so doing this to some of my daughters jeans from last year that are now too short. Thanks!

Seamingly Smitten said...

I haven't seen this before - how cool is that!?!
Seamingly Smitten

chemical spills kit said...

Cute idea I got in your blog. I just tried a small chenille quilt, I never worked with on fabric and it is one of my first fabric work. At the result, it looks beautiful and will be great looks as per fashion experts.

Shiloh said...

I don't wear capris, but the basic idea could work in a lot of ways for me.:) thanks so much for sharing.:)

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