How to Recycle Jeans Into a Skirt
– The Four-Panel Method
(Page 1 of 2)
Contributed by SavvySeams
You’ve surely seen tons of these around. They seem to go in and out of the popular style, but they always have a certain bohemian or resourceful type of charm.
For this project, you need one pair of old jeans or pants, and thread that matches the topstitching on those pants.
Step 1a: Decide how long you want your skirt to be, and cut off the legs at the right point. If you want to hem your skirt, be sure to leave extra fabric. But you also have to be sure the left over leg pieces are long enough to be the panels in your skirt.
Step 1b: Measuring up from the hem of the pants will help you get a more even cut.
Step 2: Cut out the inner leg seam. Turn the pants inside out and just cut along the seam line. (Since there is too much fabric here anyways, don’t waste time and effort ripping this seam)
Step 3: Now use your seam ripper to rip out the side seams as far as you want your side panel to go. I ripped the side seams on this skirt to half way up the pockets. On jeans these are usually flat-felled seams or seams with many stitching, so the easier way is just to start to pull the fabric apart and rip any threads that get in your way.
Step 4: Now bring the sides of the skirt together and lay on a good working surface (can be a clean floor).
Step 5: Cut off the excess fabric on a line a few inches below the yoke (see the next picture) to the raw edge. This line is shown in red.
Step 6a: Now lay the skirt down with the back to the front.
Step 6b:The cut should come just an inch or two below the yoke.
Step 7: Rip the seam from the cut to the yoke.
Step 8a: Press the raw edges under from the hem up to the yoke..
Pressing the seam allowance under at the yoke. Repeat for the other side.
When the seams get to the yoke, they will overlap by one seam allowance worth (about 1/2″). Turn the skirt as shown and press at the yoke.
Step 9: Cut the legs apart at the seams. Again, you don’t need the seam allowances so there is no need to use the seam ripper — just cut them apart.
Step 10a: Lay the skirt out on a good working surface and lay one leg panel over the back.
Step 10b: Tuck the leg panel under and pin the pressed seam allowance to the panel. Make sure the panel is even and that you’re not introducing any waves or puckers. To prevent pinning other layers of fabric, it may help to place a piece of cardboard in the middle of the skirt.
Step 11a: Topstitch the panel in place along the pinning. Do one row of edgestitching and then topstitch 1/4″ away from that so the stitching blends with the style of the jeans. Be careful when you’re stitching not to catch the edges of the leg panel. It can help if you pin the corner of the leg panel in place as well.
Step 11b: Be sure to backstitch at the yoke point.
Step 12a: Turn the skirt inside out.
Step 12b:Trim away the extra fabric 1/8″ to 1/4″ from the last row of stitching.