How to Make Cut-Off Jean Shorts & Skirts: Super-Easy Tutorial

Meera Kaneria
by Meera Kaneria
4 Materials
30 Minutes

Hi guys! Today, we’re going to be turning an old pair of jeans into a skirt or some shorts! This is a great way to take old clothes you don’t like anymore or are just out of style and revamp them into something entirely new.

Keep reading to figure out how to make cut-off jean shorts or how to make a denim skirt out of jeans!

Tools and materials:

  • Pair of jeans
  • Scissors
  • Needle and thread
  • Pencil

DIY jean shorts

Loose jeans ready for the shorts DIY

1. Pick your jeans

Go through your closet and find an old pair of jeans. They’ll need to fit well around your waist so you can turn them into a wearable pair of shorts or a skirt. 

I went with a pair that are a bit loose on the waist for the shorts and I chose a pair that fit tightly around my waist to form my skirt.

Jeans tight on the waist for the skirt DIY


Marking the jeans at the new length

2. Mark and cut your shorts

Find the length of shorts that you like to wear and then mark 3 centimeters (1.2 inches) below your chosen length. This is so we can cuff the shorts in the next step. 

How to make cut-off jean shorts

Then, cut off the excess fabric.

Rolling up the jeans for the cuffed look

3. Cuff

Flip over the bottom of the shorts and roll it twice to give them a cuffed look. 

How to cut and sew jean shorts

4. Sew

Then sew the edges from the inside so that you can’t see the stitches — and you’re done with your shorts! Here’s the final look. 

DIY shorts from jeans

This is so easy to do and the cuffed bottom looks really smart,

DIY jean skirt

Marking the jeans ready to cut

1. Mark and cut your skirt

Similar to the DIY shorts, we’re going to mark our jeans where we want to cut. 

DIY mini skirt from jeans

The length depends on what kind of skirt you want to wear, but remember to cut it a little bit longer than your desired length. We won’t be cuffing our skirt, but it’s best to be on the safe side. 

How to make a denim skirt out of jeans

2. Remove stitches from the inside hem

This step is very tedious and takes a while, but you’ll need to remove the stitches from the inside hem.

I used scissors to do this, but if you have seam rippers, you can use those. Once you get to a certain point, you can use your hands to rip the fabric apart. 

Making jeans into a mini skirt

3. Mark and sew the skirt

After you’ve removed the stitches, turn the jeans inside out and onto the back. Join the two ripped edges - lining them up accurately - and draw a straight line at the bottom. 

Sewing the skirt together

Then, following that line, sew the skirt together. 

Flipping the skirt fabric

Cut off the extra fabric. Then, flip the skirt to the front and repeat the process. 

Adjusting the DIY denim skirt

4. Resize to your liking

If you cut your skirt a bit too long early on in the beginning, now’s your chance to cut it to your desired length. You can even try it on now to make sure it’s a perfect size. 

Fraying the hem of the DIY denim skirt

5. Fray the hem

The final step is optional, but I think it makes the skirt look more complete. So, I’m going to just gently shred and fray the hem by rubbing and pulling at the ends to pull out the thread. 

The skirt is done! You can stop here if you like, or you can continue if you want to see how I further designed the skirt. I wanted to spice it up and make it a bit funkier, so this is how I did it: 

Cutting a sponge to paint shapes

6. Paint the skirt (optional)

For this, you’ll need your favorite color paint and a sponge. I cut the sponge into a triangle shape so I could make stars, but you should cut your sponge into whatever pattern you want to paint on your shorts. 

Painting yellow stars on the DIY denim skirt

Using my sponge and yellow paint, I dabbed little stars all over my skirt to create a fun little pattern. I did this on both the front and the back, and I think it came out so cute. 

DIY denim skirt

How to make cut-off jean shorts & skirts

I hope you guys enjoyed this tutorial! Let me know which one you liked best and which one you’d rather do: make a mini skirt out of jeans, or turn jeans into a pair of shorts!

Suggested materials:
  • Jeans
  • Scissors
  • Needle and thread
See all materials

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