DIY Jean Shorts for Less than 10 Dollars and 10 Minutes

Casual Clothes


DIY Jean Shorts for less than $10

Say hello to my thrift store jeans! Yes, these jeans cost me less than $10 from the local Goodwill and they are perfect for a DIY jean shorts project. They’re a tad bit too short but that doesn’t matter. Because I’m going to cut off most of the legs anyway!  Just make sure the pair fits well in the butt, the waist, and the thighs. Not too tight! Oh, and wash them first just to make sure they aren’t going to shrink any more.

The first step in starting your DIY jean shorts is determining how long you want them to be. This is the best part about making your own jean shorts. No Daisy Dukes, no riding up, no chub rub (unless you want that sort of thing).

DIY jean shorts from thrift store jeans


I use a tap measure to determine how long I want them to be. On me, this is usually about 6-7 inches. Put the end of the tape measure in the crotch and measure to the appropriate inseam length. Err on the side of measuring too long versus measuring too short. And definitely measure them when they’re on!

Then, of course, take them off.


Put the tape measure along the inseam again. But this time make sure you leave the tape measure at least an extra inch to half inch longer than what you measured when you were wearing them.


Now, remember I measured a 6.5 inch inseam when I was wearing them. I am NOT going to cut at the 6.5 inch mark. Nope, I’m going to cut at the 7.5 inch mark. Why? Because you should ALWAYS cut them longer than you think. Trust me on this. Trial and error has taught me that somehow jeans will magically shrink up once you put them back on after taking the scissors to them.

Be sure to cut at an easy to remember mark, such as a half inch tick on the measuring tape. Why? Because you have to cut at the same spot on the other leg! So once one leg is done move the tape measure to the other side and cut at the same spot on the tape.

Finally, put your new jean shorts on!


This is where you can decide if you like the length. I typically just end up rolling mine up once if they feel too long.


Alternately you can trim off more of the leg but be sure to do it in no more than half inch increments!

And there you have it! DIY jean shorts for under $10 and in less than 10 minutes. Perfect for summer.

11 replies on “DIY Jean Shorts for Less than 10 Dollars and 10 Minutes

  1. Bethany @ Accidental Intentions

    So easy! I actually do have a pair of jeans that’s way too short for me. I’ve been thinking about getting rid of them for a long time but I’ve honestly worn them maybe three or four times and they were kind of $$, so I’m not wild about getting rid of them…but I bet they could make good shorts!

  2. Anne

    I have a pair of jean shorts just like this… that I bought 🙁 I’ll keep this in mind though, since jeans being too short for me is a really, really common problem.

  3. Anne Marie

    Nooooo! I can’t believe you cut into those lovely ‘boot cut’ jeans? Wasn’t there an uglier, shapeless pair for sale that you could have taken your scissors to?

    1. Erin @ Loop Looks Post author

      Hahah, maybe! These jeans were actually too short on me otherwise I would have kept them as jeans. I’ll be going back, though, and looking for a slightly loser pair soon so I’ll keep my eye out for something ugly 🙂

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