Successful Cuff on your Pants/Shorts

Created By:

Carol Crocker Ware

Skill Level: Beginner

Add cuffs as a design element or alteration. 


You will need to make sure you have an extra four (4) inches of fabric added to the finished hemline you desire.  This fabric will form your cuff.  If you are using a pattern that does not have a “cuff”, the bottom of the pattern will taper slightly and the last inch (or whatever the hem allowance) and will angle out.  That is not what you want.

Not This!

You will need to square the bottom corners of your pattern (at the hem) to 45 degrees. *Note(If your pants are purchased “unfinished” at the hem, this will already be done). Sew your pattern as instructed.



Finish the bottom edge of your garment with an overcast stitch on your machine or serge. With your garment wrong side out, fold your hem to 2.5”.  Press the fold. If using a sewing machine, lengthen your stitch 3.0 and stitch all the way around using the fabric edge as your guide.  *Note (Feel free to use a blind hemmer or hand stitch your hem.)  Make sure you use a thread that matches your garment!



Finished Hem                    Stitched Hem



Press your hem once again. Turn your garment right side out and at the hem, turn up the bottom 1.5”. *Note (This will leave an inch of fabric on the wrong side of the garment.) Use your seam gage for this to get an even cuff measurement all the way around. (Press as you measure and don’t forget to use your clapper!)
Stitch in the Ditch              Clapper                               Measure Away!

Once you have the cuff in place at the side seams and inseam of the cuff, stitch in the ditch about 4 stitches back and forth. Clip the threads and press for the last time. 




You are Done!!!  Wear your garment with pride! You just saved yourself money with this alteration and/or learned a new skill! Nice Job!! 


Hope you enjoyed this and know if you don’t like a 1.5” cuff you can decrease the fold but the math is on you! LOL!!  Now I mush go and complete my top!!!


Talk Soon,
Everyone is Talking about Successful Cuff on your Pants/Shorts

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