Monday 23 September 2013

Easy Lycra Leggings Tutorial

I wanted some more leggings for my eldest daughter, I can never buy the right size for her from the shops so I have started making my own leggings now. They are so easy to make, so I decided to share a quick tutorial for you to see for yourself!

If your body shape doesn't fit with the shop bought leggings then this is a brilliant way to get a pair that fits you perfectly!  My daughter is really thin and I am quite tall so it is great to have some that fit you exactly right! These leggings can also have many uses: I have used these style leggings as swimwear for my children and they are also great to wear to keep you warm under long skirts and dresses (and trousers) in the winter time! You can buy your Lycra online or from Fabric shops.

You could use this pattern for other types of fabric not just Lycra but you may need to add an elastic waist to them if they are not stretchy enough. If you do this then make sure to add extra inches above the waist line so you can fold it over to hide the elastic.

  • Lycra
  • Sewing machine and Matching Threads
  • Scissors
  • Elastic (optional) 
  • An old pair of leggings

Step 1) Take an old pair of leggings to use as a template and measure to make sure you have enough fabric.
Step 2) Fold the leggings in half, and place onto the lycra (also folded in half!) See Pic. Make sure that the outside leg is the side that is along the folded edge!
Step 3) Cut around the leggings leaving extra space for hem. (if you are wanting leggings to be made longer then add extra inches at the bottom of the legs.
Step 4) You now have one piece of fabric, you then need to place this fabric back onto the lycra to make an exact copy, so you should have 2 pieces of lycra.
Step 5) Place the two pieces of fabric together (shiny/pattern sides touching) Pin the fabric along the top side edges (hip area). Sew (I use zig zag stitches for easy stretching) along the 2 pinned side edges. (not along the length of the leg!)
Step 6) Now you have a joined piece of fabric, you need to then open the leggings so that the sewed seems are now in the centre, so you can now see the trouser shape (see pic). Then pin along the trouser edges from the crotch area to the ankle. Sew along these edges. Make sure that you give extra stitches at the crotch area as this is the area the stitches can come away easier.
Step 7) Fold over the waist and sew along a hem. (you could add elastic if needed - depending on how stretchy your fabric is!)
Step 8) I don't normally add a hem to the ankle, as Lycra doesn't fray, but if you wish to make it look neater then you can add a hem at the bottom of the legs.

You now have your own pair of personalised fitted leggings. Here is a great YouTube Video I found which shows you how easy these are to make. The video actually sews the leggings at the leg first and then sews the hips second - it doesn't really matter which way you do it - you still end up with the same result!

If you don't already have a pair of leggings, here is a tutorial showing how to make some by using your own body measurements:


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