Hey shorty! Chances are you’ll be no stranger to my love of denim cut off shorts, they’re one piece of clothing I reach for time and time again when I don’t know what to wear. I like that they give a relaxed, casual look to any outfit you put on, but can also be amped up a bit with a more evening style top and a pair of heels.

But, if you’ve ever been shopping for a pair of denim shorts you’ll know that cut is key to finding a pair that suits you, whilst one person may like a shorter style, another will prefer a longer baggier style. Lucky there are cut off short styles to suit most people, which is why today we’re sharing with you 4 different styles of denim cut offs. Hopefully there’s a pair here to suit your taste!

 

Choosing Your Denim

First up, you need to choose the right denim jeans to make shorts out of! This is quite important, because most of the time fitted, stretch jeans you would usually wear don’t make great shorts. Unless you’re into denim bike pants! A few tips for choosing your denim include:

Look in the men’s department. The men’s rack of my local turf store is a great place to source jeans for cutting off, the reason being you want a design that’s not too tight.

Avoid stretch. When cutting into denim, you’ll get much more longevity out of denim that doesn’t have much stretch.

Choose a size too big. This is my secret when it comes to making denim shorts, always always always go for a size too large for you. This will give your shorts that all important hang/bagginess and overall make them more comfortable to wear.

Seek out boxy cuts. Once again, in an attempt to avoid denim bike shorts territory, boxy cuts that don’t hug your legs are the best option. Levi’s make fantastic shorts because of their boxy cuts.

Four Ways to Cut Your Denim Shorts

Below you will find 4 tutorials for different ways to cut your denim shorts, hopefully there’s a style here that you would wear. Check out the video above to see them in action, and Nicola and i dancing around like fools, because that’s how much we love denim shorts 🙂

Video

 

1/ Straight Up

This is the most basic style of denim cut offs, and doesn’t require much more than cutting them to the length you desire, although this style does look best when cut a little longer on a pair of boxy denim jeans, as it gives it a little more style.

You need

  • Denim jeans (1 size larger than usual)
  • Scissors

How to

  1. Put your jeans on and put a pin in them where you want them to finish. You want these to be longer.
  2. Add an inch to be safe and then cut them off.
  3. Try them on and check that they are the right length.
  4. Once both sides are done, wash your denim so they fray nicely.



2/ Boyfriend

Long and baggy – the ultimate in comfort when it comes to denim cut offs. Think of these as the antidote to the super short shorts that are out there at the moment. It’s important to buy your jeans a few sizes larger so they sit lower and are more baggy in the legs.

You need

  • Denim jeans
  • Scissors
  • Sand paper

How to

  1. Put your jeans on and put a pin in them where you want them to finish.
  2. Add an inch to be safe and then cut them off.
  3. Try them on and check the length, trim if required.
  4. Using scissors, cut some slits in the front of the fabric, making sure not to slice through the pockets.
  5. Use some sand paper to wear away and rough up the slits, removing the blue threads and keeping the white ones. You can also use any other method of distressing that we list here.
  6. Once both sides are done, wash your denim so they fray nicely. You can roll the edges up if you like.



3/ Rolled Hems


If you prefer cleaner lines when it comes to your outfits then perhaps a rolled hem will appeal to you more than a raw, frayed edge. I like to have a pair of both raw and rolled hems so I can match the style of denim shorts to what the rest of my outfit will look like.

You need

  • Denim jeans
  • Scissors
  • Needle and blue thread
  • Iron

How to

  1. Put your jeans on and put a pin in them where you want them to finish.
  2. Add two inches to the ends to allow for the rolled hems.
  3. Cut the jeans off and then try on for length.
  4. Roll the hems over twice so no raw hem shows.
  5. Hand sew a stitch on the inside and outside seams so that the rolls don’t come down.
  6. Iron flat.



4/ Girlfriend

Made popular the summer festivals, the girlfriend style shows a little more skin because it comes up in a curve at the outer seam. Think of them as the flirty sister of the straight up. You can, of course, cut these super short, or go for a slightly longer cut. Remember that if you want them not too short, make the initial cut a little longer so you can make them come up at the sides without them getting too short.

You need

  • Denim jeans
  • Scissors

How to

  1. Put your jeans on and put a pin in them where you want them to finish.
  2. Add an inch to be safe and then cut them off.
  3. Put them on the check the length.
  4. Once the length is fine you want to time them so they have more rounded shape and the sides are shorter than the front.
  5. Cut from the outside leg to the inside leg, giving a rounded edge.
  6. Once both sides are done, fold in half so the side seams lay against each other and check that the shape is mirrored on both sides. Trim if necessary.
  7. Once both sides are done, wash your denim so they fray nicely.


Enjoy your new denim shorts guys! A big thanks to Nicola for getting shorty (and engaging in some seriously questionable dance moves) with me for this post!.

Photos by Nicola Lemmon.

The post DIY Denim Cut Offs: Four Ways appeared first on A Pair & A Spare.

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