How to make women's boy shorts

Written by mary ann archibald Google
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How to make women's boy shorts
Boyshorts are sexy and flattering on the female figure. (woman standing in underwear image by Francois du Plessis from

Boy shorts for women are quickly becoming the sexy and sporty option in and out of the swimming pool. Just pick up a bikini top as an accessory to go with your boy shorts for a swimming costume, or add a camisole top for a lingerie ensemble. As a recycle and upcycle project, boy shorts are a breeze to make and fun to personalise. Although boy shorts are form-fitting, they also hide flaws (including panty lines) and wear very well with low-waisted jeans.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • An old cotton T-shirt (or other suitable stretchy fabric of your choice)
  • Wide elastic for the waist
  • Narrower elastic for the legs
  • Measuring tape
  • Chalk to mark your pattern onto the fabric
  • Scissors
  • Thread
  • Sewing machine

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  1. 1

    Measure just below your waist, at the area where your boy shorts will rise to.

    How to make women's boy shorts
    Measure twice, cut once. (measure image by vashistha pathak from
  2. 2

    Measure the circumference of your thigh, where your boy shorts leg hole will be.

  3. 3

    Divide each of your measurements for your waist and leg by half (you can do this by folding the measuring tape in half).

  4. 4

    Take your old T-shirt and cut away the seams so you have a front and back piece of fabric. Take note of any writing or image on the T-shirt, this is a cool way to personalise your boy shorts. Just make sure that you're cutting the fabric squarely (not on the diagonal, or bias, as it is called, because that will make your shorts stretch too much and create problems when you start to sew your garment).

  5. 5

    Lay one piece of the T-shirt material on a table and mark the width of your waist (one half the total measurement) with your chalk. This will be the top opening on the front.

  6. 6

    Draw two more marks on the fabric at either end of the mark you just made for the waist opening. These marks will represent the side seams. They should be about 4-inches long, running perpendicular to your waist opening.

  7. 7

    The front of the leg opening needs to be curved for comfort. Draw this in and leave a gap in the material between the leg holes for the crotch.

  8. 8

    Draw a rectangular shape where the crotch area is and extend it by about 4-inches, to accommodate that area when you sew all the pieces together.

  9. 9

    Repeat the above process for the back piece of your boy shorts but make a straight line for the leg holes.

  1. 1

    Line up the back and front pieces together, front sides of the fabric facing each other.

    How to make women's boy shorts
    (sewing image by Yury Shirokov from
  2. 2

    Sew a half-inch seam along the side seams.

  3. 3

    Subtract about an inch from the total length of the circumference of your thigh measurements and cut the elastic for the leg openings to fit that measurement. Sew the elastic end to end to form a loop for each leg hole area.

  4. 4

    Subtract 4-inches from your total waist measurement and cut a piece of wide elastic. Sew ends together to form a loop for the waist band.

  5. 5

    Turn the garment right-side-out.

  6. 6

    Sew the crotch front to the back (you may be able to overlap the gusset area in the crotch for additional comfort if there is enough fabric).

  7. 7

    Lining up any seams, pin the elastic into place on both leg holes and the waist area so that it stretches to fit in place.

  8. 8

    Sew the elastic into place.

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