Wannabe Wednesday:  a Skirt to Harem Pants Refashion 1
All,  Refashions

Wannabe Wednesday: a Skirt to Harem Pants Refashion

Jonny Mob Dress
Unzipped Top

In 2009, we all saw something slightly frightening hit the runway:  Harem pants.  Basically, for one season, designers tried their darndest to force this trend upon us once more:

My mom made me like 3 pairs of these in the early 90's.  :)
My mom made me like 3 pairs of these in the early 90’s. πŸ™‚

Fast-forward to 2013, and whaddyaknow?  Harem pants are attempting a dubious comeback once more!  Luckily, they’re a bit more subdued than their crotch-to-your-ankles predecessors!

Take these cute pants from Free People:

They were $98, but now they're on sale for $69.95!
They were $98, but now they’re on sale for $69.95!

I personally think this trend is rather silly, but when I was invited to a party with instructions to “dress in festive attire” and “There will be big pants.”, I decided to give ’em a go!

I began with this thrifted skirt.  The pattern doesn’t look much like the original, but it IS floral and fun, so let’s just go with it! πŸ™‚

There are like 1,000,000 of these at every thrift store!
There are like 1,000,000 of these at every thrift store!

You can kind of see on the right where there are two side slits.  I quickly stitched those down.

You are not needed!
You are not needed!
Slit no more!
Slit no more!

Then, I safety-pinned the skirt around my legs on each side so they fit really snug!


I slipped out of the skirt, and cut a U-shape from the bottom of where each leg was going to be, like so!

Hint:  You can draw the U-shape in chalk first!
Hint: You can draw the U-shape in chalk first!

I pinned along my new edge…

Wannabe Wednesday:  a Skirt to Harem Pants Refashion 2
Hint: Don’t move it from the floor, or it’ll be harder to match the sides up!

…then I sewed the two sides together!


Now I’m ready to put on my party pants!  πŸ˜€


One problem with wearing something ironically, is that you’re still wearing it.  Another problem is that you might really really end up liking it.

I totally unironically love these pants!  I’m probably going to make a couple more unironic pairs!

Guy Fawkes approves!
Guy Fawkes approves!
Wannabe Wednesday:  a Skirt to Harem Pants Refashion 3
Extreme Leg Close-up!

Of course, any trend can seem like a good idea after imbibing much wine from exotic receptacles!

And here's a pic of someone doing it right!
And here’s a pic of someone doing it right!
It's my old roommate, Bob!  :)
It’s my old roommate, Bob! πŸ™‚

Now, on to another subject I’ve avoided til now.  I’ve been getting lots of comments/emails about that handsome older gent I was seeing for the better part of a year.  The good news is, he’s still alive and also still handsome.  The other news is, we’ve been broken up for a couple of months now.  That’s why you haven’t seen any pics lately.  Our 26 year age difference, coupled with the long-distance relationship factor, thirded with many other issues we had brought everything to a close.  Don’t worry.  Everyone’s fine.

I’m not bugged with anyone for asking about this.  When you have a blog like mine where you actually put your friends/love life/social life out there the way I do, what can you expect?  So…while you’re not going to get the same detailed account as my last breakup (he didn’t like my blog, and was therefore fairer game), now you know what’s going on.  πŸ™‚

It's hard to be anonymous (hehe..get it?) when you're all over the interwebs!
It’s hard to be anonymous (hehe..get it?) when you’re all over the interwebs!


Original Cost: $69.95

Copycat Cost:  $1

Savings:  $68.95!

PicMonkey Collage
Jonny Mob Dress
Unzipped Top


  • mominhighheels

    I just found your blog. It’s super fab! I have a BFA in Theatre (specifically costume design) and English too. Dead useful. My hubs is in the Army and we’ve been living in Europe for years (11 total) and let me tell you, Europeans are IN TO harem (Hammer) pants. They lurve them. A lot. I’ve seen them mostly in Italy and Germany. Not so much in France (they’re too chic for them apparently). I went to a cross dress Halloween party when I was in college. I went as Aladdin and my bf at the time went as Jasmin. I found two very, very gold lamΓ© skirts (full length-they were a Mardi Gras thing) at the thrift store for $1 each and used a method very similar to yours to make our pants. Ah, good times. BTW, he later left me for a man, so maybe he liked it a bit too much. πŸ˜‰

    • ReFashionista

      First of all, yay Theatre Majors!
      Second of all, jealous that you’re in Europe!
      Third of all, yay fun party!
      Fourth of all, those must have been SOME pants! πŸ˜›

  • Nice Butts Drive Me Nuts

    2 legit 2 quit!! What is with the fashion industry trying to push this trend again?? They probably have a ton of backstock on the last time they tried that they need to unload. Thanks for making this project look so easy. I’m going to learn how to sew at a sewing class very soon, and i hope it’s this easy to refashion men’s clothes.

  • Kelli

    Thanks for this refashion! I am a middle school teacher and am supposed to dress crazy for an assembly next week. I think some harem pants in a funky print are just what I need! πŸ™‚

  • Biocadence

    Ahhh… absolutely love this creation! My husband and I took a trip to Argentina a few months ago. The most remark-worthy fashion novelty we noticed was what we dubbed the hammer print-pant! I now see that this cute design has moved north, as we spot it through CA. You are rockin’ it, girl!


  • Betsy

    I found your blog on good ole’ pinterest, and I’m so glad I did. Your site has taken my refashioning skills to the next level, especially tackling knits and sizing down articles. PS I see that you use rit dye in your projects for tinting synthetic materials, not sure if you’re aware of idye poly or dispersal dyes… I’ve never tried them myself…not yet anyways πŸ™‚

  • Larry

    I will always look back fondly at my time spent with Jillian.
    I had resisted the urge to become involved with her due to the differences between us. Through her persistence and affections she managed to capture my heart.
    The physical distance between us was the one difference we had the hardest time trying to overcome. It aggravated all other differences and had become more than either of us could endure.
    Jillian will always be near and dear to my heart, lost only to time’s cruel twist of fate.

  • goneshoeshopping

    So I have only recently discovered your blog, but have gone back and read like a year of it! Your refabs are simply intriguing! I have a sewing machine that I’ve had for about 6 months and I’m still scared of it! I love the idea of getting resale finds and working off of those to start out. Hopefully I’ll get enough courage now!

  • jasperizer

    Love this one, I also have a weird, long 90’s-kinda dress which I’m gonna turn into harem pants. You are a great inspiration, please stop by my blog http://etheea.wordpress.com/ it features unexpensive refashions for beginners , and every opinion is valued!

  • alexfaye

    I really want to make a pair of these! They are absolutely adorable and look so comfy. And bonus, I think I could get away with wearing them to work!

  • Melissa

    I have a pair of funky pants that don’t fit (thrift store find) like the fabric just trying to figure out what to do with it. I was thinking hand bag but wanted your thoughts. How do I send u a pic of the fabric? Thanks melissa
    btw big fan of yours:)

  • Eleanor

    I discovered your blog through Pinterest about 6 weeks ago, and have obsessively read every post! I’m a beginner as far sewing goes (just got my first sewing machine for Christmas), and I find your refashions so inspiring!

  • MrsAlwaysForever

    I’m so amazed at your refashions and always leave your post with a burning desire to upcycle something…I’m clearly distracted from the personal stuff! I just love your blog and quirky photos! Keep doing the amazing job you do we all appreciate it! And always will even if you did have a lazy eye πŸ˜€ JK I thought that was hilarious. Again clearly distracted b/c I have no idea where that would have come from!

  • Cassandra

    Hi! Love your stuff. It’s crazy. Just wondering.. Do you have a lazy eye? Or maybe uour photos are just weird angles?

  • sagegrayson

    I like your blog more and more every day. I came for the refashions…but I stay because I love how real you are. Silly, caring, and honest.

  • Jesse

    I absolutely LOVE this post. When I was in Thailand during 2009, I nabbed a pair of “yoga pants” that all the “locals wear, sooo comfy, you buy!” I badly bargained for them and now that I look back, should have bought more! They’re still going strong in 2013! While I haven’t ever left the house in them, I wear them ALLLL THE TIME! Not the most fashionable but so comfy, and hey, I can always use my excuse of “they’re from Thailand!” πŸ˜€ Way to be adventurous in your fashion excursions πŸ™‚

  • Kristen

    this might be my favorite-ever refashion! they are SO cute! I am not a seamstress, like, at all, but I want to learn for the simple reason that I want a pair of those pants!
    Also, sorry about the breakup…I just went through one too and yeah, it still sucks. Chin up!

  • Susan

    Love the pants, you have the best imagination when it comes to this stuff! I would have never thought to turn a skirt into pants, great job!

  • Lila

    Brings back so many memories…Can’t Touch This!
    Btw way i love your blog its the highlight of my day and i get all excited when I see you have a new posting.

  • Amanda

    I’ve been following your blog for a couple weeks now and I love you and your style! I cannot believe you managed to pull off harem pants and inspire me to try my hand and it! I seriously have been obsessed with your blog and have looked back at archives to catch up πŸ™‚

  • Mercedes

    So easy this refashion !! And lovely !! About the “handsome older gent” sorry for you but….he didn’t desserve you if he didn’t like your blog which is so clever, so full of ideas, so stylish, so…..YOU !! Be happy he’s gone, you’re saving troubles for tomorrow.

      • ReFashionista

        Larry is right. He was always 1,000% supportive of the blog, it was my previous ex who wanted me to can the whole thing. I’ll always be grateful to Larry for the immense amount of support and encouragement he gave.

        • Mercedes

          Please, Larry and you, excuse me, it has been a misunderstanding. English is not my language and I didn’t understand well. I absolutely LOVE your blog !!

  • angelc

    Sorry about the breakup, but you look totally adorable in those pants! I don’t think I could pull them off, but what a cute refashion. Keep up the great work!

  • Lesley

    Cool refashion. Really love your blog.
    Keep it up. I look forward to many more refashion inspirations from you.
    Best wishes from all the way over here.

  • Flo

    Those turned out great! I remember a pair of pants I had that were along these lines, but they were of a crinkle material and as the day progressed, they kept getting bigger and bigger…….I called them my MC Hammer pants. Thanks for the flashback!

  • kat

    He didn’t like your blog?!?!? The entire world loves your blog! Talk about having bad taste!
    Btw – my sister just found your blog completely independently of me and sent me an email telling me how much I would love it. πŸ™‚ She’s a couple months behind – I’ve loved it for a while now!

      • ReFashionista

        Sorry It’s taken me so long to clarify this. Larry was extremely supportive of my blog. He even took a lot of really awesome pics, and helped me out with a couple of TV appearances for it. I’ll always remember and appreciate that. As he said, it was the previous “fella” that wasn’t.

  • Erin G.-W.

    Harem, parachute, fisherman pants are all big now in Southeast Asia. (Perhaps they never went out of style). In Cambodia, the pants have crotches so low, it’s basically a skirt with ankle elastic. Frankly, I would welcome a voluminous pants comeback in the US since they are so darn comfortable! And all those poor printed skirts need to be saved from thrift eternity.

  • Willow

    I LOVE THESE!!! And I don’t even really like Harem pants! Ever tried those Thai fisherman pants??
    I love skirts done that way. I’ve take a few skirts that were like 5 sizes too big and turned them into wrap skirts. Anyway I LOVE these!!! They look brilliant on you!

  • Nadine

    I love these!!!1 it’s a great idea to make harem pants out of a skirt -the ones i got from h&m 1 1/2ears ago were still 49,95$, but now i can surf goodwill for skirts and make them myself *squeeeeel*

  • Natree

    You’re so cool. πŸ˜‰ They look awesome! And I’m right there with ya, having owned a couple pair of harem or “parachute” pants, I was not open or accepting of the rehash of that particular style. I worked in retail and the girls were always trying to get me to buy a pair (I have really long legs and they said I would look great in them. To me it seemed counter-intuitive to display my long legs while dropping my crotch about 12 inches). I said NAY! BUT, as do all of your posts, I am now inspired to give them a go. Plus I have a ton of fugly skirts that might work for this. PS, I feel for ya on the LDR thang and age diff… all of it. It seems like you two came to a very amicable agreement. Which is super great :). Best of luck and loving wishes to ya!!! ~*Natree*~

  • Liz

    Sorry about your ‘gent… happy to hear you’re doing well with it… You have just a couple people cheering you on… πŸ˜‰ And thanks for letting us in on the personal side too. πŸ™‚

  • Vicki

    Only YOU can make those goofy pants look Adorable! Thanks for the smiles! Glad you are doing well. I, too, was wondering about the “gent”, so thanks for sharing.

  • nadda

    I must have drank the kool-aid because this morning, before I saw this, I turned a big baggy skirt into a pair of boho pants. So cute.

  • outerbankshouseseller

    You are gutsy and adorable and everything fun….and that you went there with the harem pants is admirable…but I do wish they’d go by way of Hammer time!! I still love the refashion, as I do all of them. Cheers, lovey!!

  • Beth Arsenault

    As a tailor I love how casual you make these refashions… Its refreshing to see that you and others just take the plunge and have fun doing what I have to be so technical about… Customers want things to be oh so finished and proper… Thanks for your blog I love it.. It has given me a refreshed look at “tailoring”

  • 2Momma2

    Oops! didn’t realize I commented on the picture collage only…

    You look really cute in them! Did you happen to get any pics straight on so we can admire the droopy crotch style? Without a head-on picture, I’m inclined to agree that they don’t look half bad and seem pretty cute and comfy on you!

  • Ruby Leonne

    I love love love your blog. In fact it’s made me want to take up sewing. I’m getting my sewing room together as we speak and will finish it after my vacation. And it’s so funny that you mentioned your now ex. I was just thinking to myself…”whatever happened to the older gentlemen?” I told myself “girl quit trippin’ and get out of her business.” HAHAHAHA Thanks for updating the nosey people like me! Hahahaha!

  • CopyKatSGF

    I had been wondering about the “handsome older gent,” but didn’t know if it was fair game to ask. I’m glad to hear you seem to be handling it well. Just know your blog followers are with you all the way!

  • beth RE:discover

    Have to say I had some of these haram pants and honestly they were way too comfy! This is quite a nice refashion. Thanks for the inspiration.

  • christy

    You are just hilarious, wonderful ball of sunshine that I thoroughly appreciate appearing in my inbox on a daily basis. Sweet pants. Keep up all the awesomeness. You are totally kicking butt at life.

  • kk

    I’m sort of obsessed with you!!! I want these pants, and am thinking about trying to make them, if for no other reason than to have comfy pants that I can try to pull of as “office appropriate.” You are SUPER!

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