How to Make Cowboy Chaps for Little Boys

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Things You'll Need

  • Paper

  • Pencil

  • Measuring tape

  • Ultrasuede fabric

  • Fringe

  • Scissors

  • Thread

  • Sewing machine

Authentic-looking cowboy chaps can be made in a few simple steps.

Cowboy costumes have always been popular with children. Putting on a cowboy vest, hat and chaps transports a child to a Wild West fantasy world. Traditional chaps are made to serve as sturdy coverings for the legs and designed to buckle at the waist. Although chaps are worn in other parts of the world and are a basic piece of clothing for equestrian riders, they are most often associated with the American west. By rustling up a few simple items and following a few steps, you will make chaps that will delight your little cowboy.


Step 1

Measure from the waist to the top of the foot to determine the length of the chaps. Measure your child's leg circumference and divide by two. This is the width. Record the measurements on paper.

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Step 2

Place the fabric on a clean flat surface. Using scissors, cut two rectangular shapes using the length and width measurements in Step 1. Lay one rectangular fabric piece, front side facing up, with one of the width sides closest to you. Round the two corners of the width side closest to you, using scissors. Repeat this process with the second fabric rectangle. These rounded sides will be the bottoms of the chap pieces.

Step 3

Fold the edges toward the back side of the fabric, creating a 1/2–inch seam around each entire chap. Sew the seam flat, using a sewing machine. Stitch the chap fringe up the outside length of each chap. The amount of fringe needed for both chaps is determined by the chap length measurement multiplied by two.


Step 4

Make belt openings in the top of each chap. At each end of the chap top, measure 1 inch down and 1 inch in and cut a slit large enough to allow a belt to be threaded through. Repeat this process on the second chap. Starting with the right leg chap, thread the belt through the slit closest to the middle of the body first, then through the slit next to the chap fringe. Bring the belt around the body to the left leg chap. Thread the belt through the slit closest to the fringe first and then through the slit nearest the center of the body. Fasten the belt buckle.


Since children’s chaps are generally worn over jeans, threading the belt used for the chaps through a couple of pant belt loops will make the chaps more stable and less likely to move around the body.

Washable ultrasuede fabrics and all other items for this project are available at local fabric stores and centers.


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