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Wardrobe DIY: the Perfect Pants

June 27, 2012


Finding the right fit on a pair of pants can be difficult even when shopping for something new, and when you’re secondhand shopping, it becomes even more unlikely. There’s nothing more disheartening than falling in love with a pair of oh-so-perfect jeans or slacks at Goodwill, then getting them in the dressing room to find they look just dreadful on.

Not to fear! As long as you have some extra fabric to work with (instead of needing more tacked on), then there’s hope for that pair of pants.

The internet is full of tutorials about how to tailor your trousers so that they fit like you want. If you have a sewing machine, you’re all set to get to work. If you don’t, find a friend who does!

Cotton & Curls’ tutorial for taking in your trousers will get you the skinny pants look that’s just right for your body. Maybe you love the color or print on a pair of pants from Goodwill, but they’re baggy or loose. Here’s a way to bring them up-to-date and on-trend. The trick is trying the pants on inside out so you can mark them for sewing.

For all of us vertically-challenged women out there, we know what it’s like to have to hem every pair of jeans we find. And if you want to keep that original, perfect, broken-in hem, then you’re going to fork up at least $20 at a tailoring shop. The Pie & Beer blog has an easy tutorial for doing this yourself. So next time, go ahead and get those long and leans from Goodwill and make them work for no more than the $4.99 you pay off the rack. (Love the Tim Gunn reference – “make it work!”)

The prices at Goodwill are so great that there’s no reason to turn down the perfect pattern, print, or color when it just happens to end up on something a little ill-fitting. I encourage you to take a risk, take it to the cash register, and then find a creative way to make it work when you get home. When you need some guidance, just hop online. I guarantee someone out there has already figured out a way to do it themselves.

– Amanda

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