How to Turn a T-Shirt into Striped Jersey Shorts

Since some of us are still melting away in 100 degree weather these striped jersey shorts are just what a little boy (or girl) on the move would need. For those of you that are bundling up, these still make the comfiest jammies. Kojo Designs is a blog we’ve been crushing on since we spotted their Anthropologie Inspired Knotted Bedding and Anthropologie Knock-Off Curtains. They stole our hearts with the Sprinkled With Love Birthday and Sprinkle Cake Topper. Now they are here to give you the full tutorial for How to Turn a T-Shirt into Striped Jersey Shorts.

Check it out after the jump…

How to Turn a T-Shirt into Striped Jersey Shorts

My 4-year old son, Burke, has a drawer full of ‘comfy clothes.’ We keep extra soft t-shirts, jammies, and sweats in there. However, I noticed recently that the drawer is extra pant heavy and pretty light on the ‘comfy shorts’ selection.

Luckily, a nap-time’s worth of jersey short sewing remedied our shorts deficit!

These little jersey shorts are an easy sew (I made two pairs during one naptime). Add some stripes with a bleach pen and you have some seriously cute little lounge shorts. Your little guy probably needs some too.

To make some striped jersey shorts, you’ll need-

-an XL (or bigger) guy’s tshirt

-sewing supplies

-bleach pen

-a pair of sample shorts

Fold your ‘template shorts’ in half. Line up the outside edge of the shorts along the edge of the tshirt (and the hem of the shorts at the bottom of the shirt).

Trace with a fabric pen (stretch out the elastic waist before tracing).

Cut around the traced line, leaving a half inch perimeter on the side and at least an inch on the top edge (sorry it switches to the blue shorts here- I didn’t take pictures while I made the orange ones. It’ll switch back to orange when I’m explaining the bleach stripes).

Pin and sew along the inside edge of each leg.

Pull apart and pin together the crotch edges (make sure you line up the center line exactly). Sew (make sure your right sides are pinned facing each other).

With the shorts still inside out, fold over the top edge, pin in place and sew in place.

Snip two little holes in the center of the drawstring casing. Pull the drawstring through with a safety pin (knot each end so that it doesn’t pull back through).

If you want to add bleached stripes, insert cardboard rectangles into each leg. Then, draw evenly spaced lines with a fabric pen onto the shorts.

Use the bleach pen to trace the lines you drew. Then draw lines in between your already-drawn lines with the bleach pen. I didn’t extend the bleach up to the drawstring casing.

Let your side set for at least half an hour (I put Burke’s shorts in the sun for that half hour). Once the bleach is dry, flip over the shorts and repeat. Wash and dry your shorts and you’re done!

The perfect solution to a drawer full of pants!



kirstin @ kojo

Hey Kate- thank you!
And, yep, the dress is made from the same tshirt! πŸ™‚ I think it’s the Go To Dress pattern by Andrea at A Train to Crazy. πŸ™‚ Love the comfy factor!


100 degree heat? Seriously? Here in the UK we’ve had the world’s crappiest summer weather (it rained constantly for nearly 3 months) which has now been followed by one of the wettest, chilliest autumns I can remember. Woe is us.

Still, I love this project! So nice to see a simple sewing project for boys clothing. It may be far too cold and wet here for shorts now, but my little dude hates being too hot in bed, so they’ll be perfect for sleeping in until next spring when it warms up again.


Great project! I may be tempted to adapt it to make my Sweetheart pj-shorts from his own old t-shirts…
One other thing: isn’t it amazing that Kirstin happens to have the exact same pillow case (the “fields of flowers” one) as Dana from Made?! Are all bloggers connected…? πŸ™‚


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