07 April 2016

do it yourselfie: tassel shorts tutorial!

Hey folks!! Long time no see! I've been in a super crafty mood lately, and a pair of jeans I have recently fell victim to what is commonly known as Thick Thigh Terror - aka the inner thighs of my jeans wore through! It happens to me pretty frequently, even when I buy "big girl" jeans, so I don't know if my legs are just too mighty for pants or what! Either way, when this happens I usually just cut the legs off the pair of jeans at the highest point of thigh-hole, but don't do much after that! This time I thought I'd give it a little more effort and actually make something of these new shorts, so here I am to show you how it's done.
you'll need:
  • a pair of cutoff shorts or any jeans/shorts (thrifted shorts would be great for this project!)
    • for unhemmed shorts: pins; needle and thread or sewing machine
  • scissors
  • embroidery floss or yarn in your favorite colors
    • I used about 1 little skein of embroidery floss for every 3 tassels for a total of 30 tassels/ 10 skeins, but your mileage may vary
  • washable pen or chalk for marking
  • tapestry or embroidery needle
  • optional: patches or additional decorations for shorts!
Once you've gathered all your "ingredients," let's get started! (Also, pardon all the dog hair on the rug...... I don't have a table big enough for projects yet! So the floor must do!)

Since my shorts were originally jeans, I had to hem them before I could get going on any decoration. The edges were raw and I already have too many pairs of cutoffs that look scraggly and bad! So here's a quick primer on hemming shorts:
Fold the bottom edge of each leg up twice, then pin in place vertically. The vertical placement of the pins helps your sewing machine foot sew over them, as when you sew your hem down the leg of your shorts goes perpendicular through the machine. Do this one leg at a time, for both legs.
Ta-da! Hemmed shorts!
Now, honestly, this would be a great place to stop if you were just looking for a quick and easy project to help fix some old pants. But if you're interested in adding something different to your wardrobe like I was, or if you're starting with hemmed shorts already, it's decorating time!!
I used a pen to mark where I wanted each tassel to run along the hem. I started from the inseam and marked a little dot every two inches or so on the very bottom edge of my hem where you couldn't see it (and where I wanted each tassel to dangle). Use a light-colored pen or marker, or something washable. I couldn't find my marking pen so I used a Sharpie, but I made my marks small enough that they wouldn't be visible once I attached the tassels. I made about 14-15 marks on each side, so I knew I needed about 30 tassels.

I had never made tassels before, but this tutorial from Tiny Modernist made the step-by-step instructions really clear! What I will tell you, though, is making tassels is TIME-CONSUMING as heck!! I finished about half of the tassels in maybe two hours and had to take a break. It's not hard, but very fiddly, so it did take me a while to finish it. But the inch and a half length was perfect and I really liked having all the different colors once I was done.
I then laid out all the tassels on each side, arranging the colors in a pattern I liked and making sure I distributed them evenly.

Then came the easy part: attaching the tassels to the shorts! I found that a tapestry needle worked perfectly for sewing the floss into the denim. I threaded both tails of the tassel through the eye of the needle, then pulled it through the very edge of the shorts' hem where I made my mark.

Then I pulled the tails through the little loop made by the tails close to the top of the tassel and tied it off tightly. A triple knot did the trick and was hardly visible! Then repeat on all your marks for all your tassels, on both legs of your shorts.

TASSEL SHORTS! I think these are so cute for the upcoming warmer months, and even festival season! These could easily be replicated for under $10 or even $5, depending on the source of your shorts, and you get to say you made them yourself!! You could even go hog-wild and just bedazzle the heck outta the pockets and add patches and embroider little designs all over, do whatever you want! (I gotta admit, I thought about it.... and I have so many patches I've saved for projects that I gotta use them somehow! Maybe I'll revisit these........)

Thanks for reading my first DIY blog post, I hope you enjoyed and let me know what you'd like to see more of!!


Post a Comment