How to Make Hot Pants

Make a pair of hot pants for a look that will last all summer.
Make a pair of hot pants for a look that will last all summer. (Image: Steve Mason/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Hot pants, which are simply very short shorts, first grabbed attention in the 1970s. For the confident and leggy wearer they are another way to turn up the summer heat. Buying hot pants can be a risky business, however, because they fit everyone so differently. So make your own instead. Find a pair of body-hugging pants or jeans and stitch up hot pants for sizzling summer days.

Things You'll Need

  • Scissors
  • Pair of tight-fitting pants or jeans
  • Needle and thread

Try on the pair of pants or jeans for fit. It's best to use pants that fit snugly at the hips with a mid-to-high waistline.

Mark how far down you'd like the hot pants to go using tailor's chalk. The hot pants can always become shorter after you've cut them, so in the beginning it's better to be generous with the length.

Take off the pants and fold them carefully so that both legs are flattened, one on top of the other.

Measure down from the chalk mark 2 inches to allow room for fraying, and draw a dotted line all the way around the pant leg. Repeat this process with the other leg, and then refold them to make sure the lengths match and the shorts will be symmetrical.

Cut on the dotted line to remove the excess material, and set aside. As you are cutting, be careful to keep a straight line and to avoid mistakes near the thick seams of the pant leg.

Try on the hot pants for fit. Shorten them if necessary. If you're happy with the length, fray the cut edge of the shorts by running them through a washer and dryer for a distressed, worn-in look.

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