Transform an Old Sweater Into a Hanging Crop Top and Shorts

Rosa Padilla
by Rosa Padilla
6 Materials
1 Hour

Oversized sweaters are so comfortable! I doubled that comfort by upcycling an old sweater into a super-cute hanging crop top and shorts set. I am absolutely obsessed with this transformation! If you want to learn how to refashion your sweater into an awesome top and shorts duo, this tutorial is definitely for you! Follow my easy, step-by-step guide and learn all the ins and outs for creating this cozy two-piece. I am so in love with my new hanging crop top and shorts! This is one upcycle you definitely won’t regret!

Tools and materials:

  • Sweater
  • Shorts
  • Pins
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine
  • Elastic
How to upcycle a sweater
Crop the sweater

To get started on this gorgeous set, I tried on my oversized sweater and pinned where my crop top would end. 

Cut the sweater

I then cut a straight line across my marked point. 

Rip the seams
Seam rip the bottom

To get the fabric that I needed to make my new cute shorts, I removed the bottom piece of the sweater. 

Upcycled sweater crop top
Cut out the fabric

To create the perfect pieces for my new shorts, I used an old pair as a pattern. I folded my fabric over and traced a back piece.

Trace the shorts

I also made sure to trace a front piece using the same pair of shorts. I then cut out my two pieces and cut them at the fold as well so that I was left with four pieces. I was so ready to get started on these super-cute shorts. 

Pin the pieces
Sew the shorts

Once I had my 4 pieces cut and ready, I laid them all down and put the top pieces over the bottom pieces. I pinned the side edges of the pieces and sewed them together. 

Pin the inside

Then I moved on to pin the inside of the shorts. I worked my way up pinning the back and front. I then hopped on over to my sewing machine and sewed the front and back seams where I had pinned. 

Sew the crotch

Next, I had to perfectly align the crotch pieces and sew them in place. I couldn’t believe how quickly these shorts were coming together! 

Measure the waistband
Add a waistband

In this next step, I used the bottom of the sweater to create a waistband for my new shorts. I first measured and cut the waistband to size. 

Upcycled sweater shorts

I then pinned the waistband, right sides together, to the top of the shorts and sewed all the way around leaving a small gap for the elastic. 

Sew the elastic’s ends

In this next step, I fed an elastic through the waistband, using a safety clip. Once the elastic was all the way through, I sewed the two ends together and sewed closed the gap I had left earlier. 

Make an outward-facing hem
Add a perfect finish

To give these shorts the perfect finish, I folded the bottoms to create an outward-facing hem. I couldn’t wait to try them on! 

Upcycled sweater projects

This shorts and crop top set is everything! Where would you wear this amazing look? Let me know in the comments below! 

Suggested materials:
  • Sweater
  • Shorts
  • Pins
See all materials

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Join the conversation
  • Miriam Illions Miriam Illions on Oct 16, 2020

    How cute and clever is this?!

  • Kristen Kristen on Oct 28, 2020

    I would LOVE for you to do this for me. Can you?,& if so pkease contact me at as I've been battling cancer Stg 3/4 t-3 for I we 2 years & can't seem to get back as I was so please consider & if so tell me what to send it do. Thank you so much.

    Kristen Green