Maternity Pants (Tutorial)

With Peanut’s pregnancy, I was pregnant mostly through the winter. Toward the end I was pulling out lightweight dresses to stay comfortable, but for the majority of my nine months I was bundling up in tights, sweaters, and scarves. With this pregnancy, most of it will be during the summer months. So a few pairs of maternity shorts were high on my list.

With an old pair of shorts my little sister had given me (and I’d never worn) and an old Belly Band from Peanut’s pregnancy (which I hardly ever used), I made myself a pair of maternity shorts in just TWO easy steps. If you don’t have a Belly Band, just use a piece of sturdy and stretchy  jersey — it will work just as well.

Here’s what I did:

When Landen gave me the shorts, she had started altering them but had never finished — hence the one leg longer than the other. So the first thing I did was re-hem the leg. After that, I turned them inside out, pinned them to my desired fitting, then sewed up the leg to skinnify them a bit (full instructions for doing this step are found here).

Step 1. Cut out the waistband, getting as close to the actual waistband as you can. Be careful around the zipper. I was able to get close enough to the waistband to not cut the zipper at all. If you have to cut the zipper, make sure you secure the opening before moving on (or else you’ll pull your zipper pull right off when you go to zip up your pants).

Step 2. With right sides together, pin the Belly Band to the raw edge (where you just cut the waistband off). Using either a serged seam, a small zigzag seam, or a stretch stitch, sew around the entire waistband to secure the Belly Band to your pants. (If you use a straight stitch with regular thread, the seam (and the waistband) will not stretch as your belly expands).

And that’s it! A new pair of shorts that I can wear all summer long, despite how enormous my belly gets!

Also, I’m pretty sure I need to start using my tanning lotion again…that ‘before’ picture is making my ‘after’ picture a bit jealous πŸ™‚

As always, comment or email with any questions. Happy Sewing!


  1. Katie says:

    great job!! and what tanning lotion do you use because it works so well??

  2. Rachel says:

    Once again, I am very impressed. I'l have to remember this one!

  3. Janssen says:

    Very nice. When I made my jeans a couple of years ago, I found that as I got more pregnant, the Bella Band wasn't strong enough to keep them after a while. You may be okay because yours aren't as heavy as full length jeans, but when I make another pair, I'm going to add elastic to the top.

  4. seriously! you should come sew all my clothes! you are so amazing. I might get an old pair of something and practice first. thanks for the tutorial!

  5. Britty says:

    haha @ the tan comment. I'll be spending next weekend on a lake, and you betcha I'll be taking advantage of fake-n-bakin'. it's the only way to go πŸ˜‰

  6. What a great idea for DIY maternity shorts for no money! I was making a pair of capris skinnier and when I sewed them tighter I couldn't bend my knees πŸ™ I had to let the seam out to make them wearable and not quite as skinny. Do you ever have that problem? I thought the material was stretchy ( it said stretch on the tag!) but it wasn't true. I still have a whole pile of capris and shorts that need the skinny treatment πŸ™‚

  7. newpetite says:

    Awesome! Love the bright yellow top!

  8. Love them! And what a great idea–my pants all still fit, with the exception of the top button. This is an excellent fix, for the ones I feel like sacrificing to the belly…

  9. Leanne says:

    LOVE this! Totally doing this next time I am knocked up.

  10. Briana says:

    Where did you get your cute yellow top?

  11. GENIUS!!! Where was this for me last summer?! btw…you hardly look preggers! You look great!

  12. Laura says:

    Merrick, you don't know me but I do read your blog & think you are adorable! I love your fashion sense & tips. Your tutorials make me want to get my sisters together & all make this tunic! so cute! Anyway, just wanted to say that, keep the posts coming πŸ˜‰

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