These DIY High-Waisted Shorts Are a Fantastic Skirt Flip Idea

Pam Oduor
by Pam Oduor
9 Materials
2 Hours

I had a skirt lying around and catching all the dust in my closet. Instead of throwing it out, I decided to transform it into high-waisted shorts! There are so many high-waisted shorts DIY ideas, but this one is truly unique because it also serves as a fantastic upcycle too.

So, if you’d like to know how to make shorts from a skirt, see my full tutorial below!

Tools and materials:

  • Skirt or fabric
  • Loose-fitting shorts
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
  • Ruler
  • Measuring tape
  • Scissors
  • Zipper
  • Pins
Unpicking the waistband from the skirt

1. Unpick the seams

Unpick the side seams of the skirt with a seam ripper. My skirt also had a waistband, so I detached that panel, too. 

Making the high-waisted shorts pattern

2. Create the high-waisted shorts sewing pattern

Next, measure 3 inches from the top and start the pattern below that mark. Then, grab a pair of comfortable shorts, fold them, and place it on your fabric. Make sure your fabric is folded so that you have two pieces. 

Cutting around the high-waisted pattern

Cut around the shorts, leaving the 3-inch seam allowance on top. You should have two of the same pieces.

Tip: Make sure the back crotch protrudes as you need the exact pattern and shape for these high-waisted shorts. 

Cutting out the back pieces for the shorts

Next, use the front pieces as a guideline and cut out the shape for the back pieces. 

Assembling the DIY high-waisted shorts

3. Assemble the high-waisted shorts

Now, lay the front pieces on top of each other and the back pieces, too. They should be right sides facing. Then, sew along the curved line and stop just where the crotch area curves outward. 

How to make DIY high-waisted shorts

This is what it should look like when you open both pieces. 

Make shorts from a skirt

Now, lay both pieces on top of each other, right sides facing. Then, sew along the side seams, but be sure to leave one side open so that you can attach a zipper. Also, sew the inner crotch area. 

Folding the top edges to make a waistband

4. Make the waistband

Now, fold the top edges over by about an inch and pin all around. Then, sew to secure the fold in place. 

Pressing the side seams on the shorts

5. Install the zipper

Go ahead and install the zipper to the open side seam. Before sewing it on, press the side seams to ensure a crisp finish. 

Pinning the zipper to the shorts

Next, pin your zippers on either end of the side seam and sew to secure. 

Tip: Make sure the shorts are turned the wrong sides out for this step. 

Green DIY high-waisted shorts

DIY high-waisted shorts tutorial

Easy and fabulous! What do you think of my DIY high-waisted shorts? This is really an unbelievably good upcycle. Before you go out and buy high-waisted shorts, why not try making them at home?

Let me know what you think of this tutorial and the results in the comments below.

Suggested materials:
  • Skirt or fabric
  • Loose-fitting shorts
  • Sewing machine
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