DIY Festival Fashion: Turn Jeans into Embroidered Shorts The Easy Way

July 12, 2018
We are in the middle of festival season and embroidered boho jeans shorts are a must have for anyone who takes fashion seriously.

I am going to my first festival this year at the beginning of August and after a depressing shopping afternoon downtown trying out shorts that did not fit properly, were not very pretty or were overly priced, I decided to make my own. How hard can it be?

Turns out jean shorts are not at all hard to make. You don't need to have any sewing skills for this project, just a pair of scissors and confidence.

In this tutorial I will show you a few tricks and shortcuts I used to make this beautiful embroidered jeans shorts, no skills needed!

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But before we start, please note that this post contains affiliate links, I will earn a small percentage should you choose to purchase something, but it will be at no cost to you. 

You can read the disclosure policy here.


- a pair of jeans you don't want to wear anymore

- scissors

- sandpaper

- ruler

- tweezers 

The Process

Step 1: Put on the jeans and mark how short you want the shorts to be. Mark it with a pen.

Step 2: Lay down the jeans and use a ruler and pen to draw a straight line where you previously marked, then cut it. 

The trick here is to draw and cut it slightly in diagonal, that way, the shorts will fit better.

Step 3: Use the tweezers to fray the edges. 

It's going to be a bit tricky to make the fringe even because the cut is in diagonal. 

The secret here is to partially pull the cotton strings and cut them to create an even fringe (see pic below).

Step 4: Here's another trick - use sandpaper to create a more distressed frayed hem, it gives the shorts a more boho look, perfect for festivals.

And the pair of shorts is done. 

But they seemed so plain and boring, so I went a step further and embellished them with some pretty embroidery on the front panels. 

So here we go...

Step 5: How to embroider your newly made boho jean shorts when you don't know how to? Use iron on embroidery patches! 

It's fast, it's easy and it does not require any skills.

What a great idea that is! Buy your favourite design, iron it on and instantly get the custom handmade embroidered garment look with minimal work and money.

Put the iron on then lay the jeans flat and place the patch where you want it to be. 

Press the iron hard for a few second to glue the patch to the fabric, do not use the steam function of the iron, otherwise the patch won't glue properly.

I chose cherry blossoms for my jeans, but sky's the limit when it comes to the options. 

Step 6: This step is optional, but I recommend it if you want to wear your shorts more than a couple of times. Secure the patches with a few stitches just to make it more wash friendly.

I stitched it all around the outline.

And here's another pair I made, this time using lace for the sides and lace butterflies iron on patches for the front panels.

Happy Crafting!

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