Lately I’ve had an obsession with high-waisted jorts (blue jean shorts for any of you who need a quick Urban Dictionary update). Studded Jorts. Neon Jorts. Ripped jorts. Lacy jorts. Bleached jorts. So, why not order some lovely vintage high-waisted jorts from Urban Outfitters you ask? Well...my way is a lot cheaper! Fortunately, a trip to Goodwill and a few hours with scissors is all you need.
Ultra Distressed High-Waisted Jorts
DIY High-Waisted Lacy Jorts
Old Pair of Blue Jeans
A Sharpie or Pen
Lace Fabric (or old lace shirt)
Bright Construction Paper
Needle and Thread (or a friend who can loan 10 minutes of their sewing abilities)
Naturally, this project begins at the thrift store closest to you (or your closet…if you tend to be a compulsive hoarder and rocked some cool Levi’s at some point in your past). Make a beeline for the women’s jeans isle and pick up every pair that looks anything like your size. You’ll probably find faded tags and incorrect sizing, so it helps to eyeball every pair. Haul your load of blue jeans to the dressing room and try those bad boys on. Take a friend with you, because I promise they won’t want to miss out on the 90’s fashion show. I found that the best fit for making these jorts is snug in the waist but roomier in the thighs. You don’t want them suction-cupped to your legs after the cut. I made it out of Goodwill with two pair of jeans ($5 each).
The next step is fairly obvious- snip, snip, snip! Always start with a safe, longer cut, and try them on first. Then, you can really put your scissors to work and trim a little higher. It’s helpful to use a pen or Sharpie to mark where you want to make your cut while the shorts are still on. I found that I like the front of the shorts trimmed a little higher than the back. Continuing to try them on throughout the cutting process will help you find your exact cut.
When you have them where you want them, throw them in the washing machine! The washing machine will start the fraying process and drying them will top it off.
Now for the lace. You can use whatever fabric you’d like. Personally, I picked up an XL lace top at Goodwill and trimmed it up, but you can use whatever you have handy. You’ll start by taking a piece of brightly colored construction paper and placing it on the back of your shorts. Press the paper on the shorts where you can feel the hem of the pocket and trace the pocket onto your paper. It can be a rough trace. Next, cut out your pocket pattern. Now it’s time to stretch your lace fabric out on the floor. Place your construction paper pocket on the fabric, and pin the paper to the fabric. Now cut around the pattern leaving a liiiittle extra fabric. You want your actual piece of fabric to be a bit bigger than the construction paper pattern to make the sewing easier.
Use your pattern twice to make 2 beautiful lace pockets, and it’s time to sew! Like I mentioned in the beginning- a friend’s help is totally allowed at this point :). Sewing isn’t my forte so- I’ll admit- I called on a friend for this one! BUT if you have any of knowledge of sewing, apparently this is a very easy stitch. Since you cut your fabric a little larger than the pocket, you can fold the edges of the lace under at the edges of the pocket, making a nice lace hem. The sewing machine can be used for the sides and bottom of the pocket, but you’ll probably want to hand-stitch the top so your pocket isn’t sewn shut!
And viola! A $5 pair of vintage (and literally vintage- who knows who owned those lovely Goodwill jeans!) high-waisted lacy jorts! Enjoy!
Ultra Distressed High-Waisted Jorts
As for the other pair, you’ll need:
A lighter wash of old blue jeans
A small, sharp knife
The beginning process for these is the same as for the first ones. Trim away until you’ve found your ideal length. Next, take your knife and fray the edges you’ve cut. This will help them to fringe even more in the washer. Now use the knife and sand paper to roughen the edges of the pockets. Then rub your knife in any particular spots where you wish to have a distressed hole. Using the edge of the knife, repeatedly rub the same spot until fraying begins to occur. This is where you can have some fun- make the hole as big or as small as you want. I even used a vegetable peeler to help make the holes- whatever tools you can find! Then, time to wash and dry. You can even throw a little bleach in the washer for a bleached look. Pull them out of the dryer and voila! Ultra distressed high-waisted shorts!
Although I don’t think I would confidently rock this look around Knoxville, the bandeau can be substituted for a cute swimsuit top for a pool/beach day!
Until next time!