Go From Skinny to Flared: DIY Flare Jeans

Skye Simpson
by Skye Simpson
7 Materials
90 Minutes

I hate skinny jeans. They cut off your blood supply, do only bad for your figure, and need to be put to rest. So, in an effort to bring bell-bottoms back, I’m going to turn my old despised skinny jeans into flare jeans.

Tools and materials:

  • Sewing machine
  • Old skinny jeans
  • Seam ripper
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Canvas material
  • Pattern fabric
Make DIY flare jeans

Rip the seam 

Put the jeans on and use a safety pin to mark off where you want your flare to go to. Then take the pants off and use a seam ripper to open up the side seam. It will be tricky around the ankle part, but power through! Rip open the seam underneath (which is the actual seam that holds the pants together) and then use some scissors to clean up the edges. 

Sew DIY flare jeans

Create your patch 

Measure and cut out a triangle from some canvas material and then repeat the process with your pattern fabric. Pin the two triangles together, right sides facing, and then stitch them. Make sure to leave a small hole in the fabric so that you can turn your triangle right side out. Finish it by folding the raw edges in stitching them closed. 

How to make DIY flare jeans

Connect the insert 

Turn the pants inside out and place the triangle into the hole upside down so that the right sides are touching. Pin the insert in place (aim for the very edge of the jeans). Stitch the insert in place and turn the pants inside out to finish. 

How to sew DIY flare jeans

Do the other side 

For my second leg, I used a much stiffer canvas to give it more structure. In hindsight, I think this worked better for the look I was going for and recommend using something that won’t flop so much. Then, like before, I placed the canvas and insert it together, right sides touching. But this time I only stitched along the bottom before turning the insert trite side out and finishing the sides. I think this method was better. It kept things crisper and cleaner. Finally, sew the insert into the jeans the same way as before. 

Basic DIY flare jeans

Add a patch 

To tackle the very scandalous hole in my jeans, I started out by measuring it. This was so that I could get a clear understanding of how big my patch needed to be. Once you have the right size, trace it out onto your stiff canvas and then sketch a butterfly that is big enough. (For the sake of symmetry, I drew one half of the butterfly on a fold and cut out both sides together.) Cut out an identical butterfly from the pattern fabric and place the two pieces together, securing them with a straight stitch and finishing with a zigzag stitch. 

Easy DIY flare jeans

Pin the patch into place (with a book in between the jeans so that you don’t accidentally pin the patch to the back). Hand sew the butterfly in place to finish. 

Simple DIY flare jeans

In the end, one side of my simple DIY flare jeans ended up being floppier than the other, but it wasn’t bad enough to make me want to redo the whole thing - but learn from my mistakes! Overall, however, I am pretty happy with the final result. It is channeling some early 2000’s vibes, but with a cute crochet top, this outfit wasn’t half bad. 

Suggested materials:
  • Skinny jeans
  • Sewing machine
  • Seam ripper
See all materials

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Join the conversation
2 of 19 comments
  • Mon49267374 Mon49267374 on May 26, 2022

    In the early 70’s I remember adding these pleats and inserts to my and my friends jeans. We even went so far as to hand embroider our back pockets or a motif on the pant leg!

  • Charlotte Hayward Charlotte Hayward on Jun 08, 2022

    I remember when. Clothes then were a lot of fun. Hacking clothes is a great way to express your inward designer. These are really cute.