Thrift Flip Tutorial: How to Upcycle Pants With Crochet Doilies

8 Materials
1 Hour

Do you ever get a refashion idea in your head that seems really crazy but which won't go away? I bet you can guess this happens to me a lot!

When I did my seasonal wardrobe switch, I discovered a pair of lounge pants that were in dire need of some upcycling.

I've had them for some time and they're very comfortable but starting to look a bit tired. I thought they'd be the perfect subject to play with for the quirky idea I'd pushed aside.

So here's a super-quick upcycle pants tutorial featuring part of my crochet doily and lace collection!

Tools and materials:

  • Old lounge pants
  • Vintage doilies
  • Lace trim
  • Piece of cardboard or similar
  • Pins
  • Scissors
  • Hand sewing needle and thread
  • Sewing machine
Planning pants upcycle

1. Planning

I found a couple of embroidered doilies where the embroidery was a great match for the color of the pants. I also have a length of creamy lace.

Decide where you want to place the doilies. Mine are quite large so I chose to put them directly over the knees of the pants.

Yours may fit better on the front or back pockets.

Planning pants upcycle

2. Placement

Wash and press the doilies if needed.

Try the pants on. 

Move one of the doilies around until you're happy with the placement. Pin it in place and use it as a guide to place the second doily.

Pinning doilies

Pin both doilies in place.

Sewing doilies into place

3. Sewing

In order to machine sew mine over the knees, I would have had to undo one of the seams. I decided instead to hand sew them onto the pants.

Place a piece of cardboard or small chopping board inside the pants behind the doily, so you don't sew through both layers.

Use a simple running stitch or backstitch to hold the doilies in place.

Adding lace trim

4. Lace trim

Stitch the lace trim to the bottom of the pants. 

Mine was already gathered but if yours isn't, pin them into pintucks first.

DIY upcycled pants

DIY upcycled pants

DIY upcycled pants

This is definitely one of the funkier, quirkier looks I've come up with! I'm quite sure not everyone will like it but if you're into the 70s vibe, this may just be for you.

I think the pants go really well with the shirt I bought in Mexico and refashioned - it's all in the styling.

I'd love to know what you think of this look. Would you wear it?

Next, check out my post on How to DIY a Cool Upcycled Jacket.

Suggested materials:
  • Old lounge pants
  • Vintage doilies
  • Lace trim
See all materials

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