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How To Decrease The Waistline On Jeans

Whenever you think about comfortable pants, a pair of jeans will top the list. But, if your thighs are bigger than your waist, you will find trouble in getting the best-fit jeans.

If you want to enhance the look of your jeans outfit, then loose fitting won’t work. Your jeans must be well-fit in your waistline and give an overall enhanced appearance. But, what to do in cases of a big or loose waistline of your jeans? It will be a costly decision to buy a new one.

The best alternative solution is to decrease your jeans’ waistline. You can alter your jeans’ waist with some simple and easy sewing steps and techniques.

If you wish to save money and get the best fit and outlook from your jeans, follow this blog. We have covered up all the steps and details to decrease the waistline of your jeans effectively. So, let’s dig in.

How To Decrease The Waistline On Jeans?

You can decrease the waistline of your jeans with and without a sewing machine. If you’re away from your machine, you won’t have to worry. A thick sewing needle will do the job for you.

With the proper materials and steps to proceed, decreasing your jeans’ waistline is no hassle. You can enhance the durability of your jeans with the right size fit. So, gather your determination and focus on learning the steps to decrease the waistline of jeans easily.

If you’re well-skilled with the use of sewing machines, you will enjoy decreasing the waistline of your jeans. So, follow these steps for an effective and easy altering of your jeans’ waistline.

Materials Required

Without proper materials, you will face hassles for the optimum altering of your jeans. You must know all the materials to collect them all together before proceeding with the alteration of your jeans. Here are a few materials that you should put on your checklist.

Safety Pins or Ball Pins

You have to get a set of safety pins or ball pins for pinning the seams to stitch them.

Fabric Scissors

You have to cut down the excess fabric of your jeans, and you will need fabric scissors. These scissors will help you to cut through a straight line without any chance of unraveling.

Seam Ripper

You will need a small sewing tool called a seam ripper to cut and remove the existing stitches.

Iron And Ironing Surface

To finish the seams of your jeans, you will need a well-functioning iron. In addition, get an even flat surface for ironing your jeans.

Measuring Tape And Marker

Finally, check if you have a good-ink marker and measuring tape or not. You will need them to measure and mark the new length to downsize the waistline of your jeans.

Step 1: Use Your Pin

In the beginning, you have to put your jeans on a flat even surface upside down.

  • Then, you have to pin the jeans on their waistline and hips by the way you want to fit them.
  • Pinch out both sides of your jeans along the waistline and pin them. If possible, take the help of your family member or friend to hold the pinched portion to pin them efficiently. 
  • If you want to be self-dependent in altering, turn the jeans inside out and pin the sides without hassle. 

Step 2: Pinch Out Fabric And Unpick Side Seam

In this step, you have to find the length of the pinched fabric on both sides of the jeans’ waist.

  • If you need to decrease the waistline by a smaller length, you can take ½ inch or 1 inch for pinning on each side.
  • Then, you have to unpick both sides seam down by 8-8.5 inches from the jeans’ waistband. For unpicking the waistband, you can take the measurement of 3 inches on either side of the side seams.
  • Finally, you have to blend the pinched-out length with the existing side seam down from the waist.

Step 3: Seam Allowance And Cutting The Jeans 

In this step, you have to turn the jeans inside out. Then, use a marker or fabric pen to mark the new side seam.

  • If there are no metal studs over the stitching line, consider yourself to be lucky. 
  • These metal studs block the sewing opportunity and cannot be removed without the help of the right tools. You have to leave the waistband for the final stage.
  • Now, if you’re satisfied with the marked line and the fitting, add seam allowance. You can add ⅜ inches or 1cm of the seam allowance.
  • Then, cut off the remaining fabric from both sides of the waistline of the jeans.
  • You can cut off the excess fabric before sewing to finish the raw edges effectively and efficiently.

Step 4: Sew The Seams And Waistline

In this step, you have to overlock or zigzag the raw edges of the fabric. Then, you have to pin the side seams and sew them in a stretch. 

  • You have to perform a straight stitch with ⅜ inches of the seam allowance. You have to remove the pins while sewing, so stitches slowly and precisely.
  • Now, press the seams open.

Step 5: Try Out Your Jeans

After all these steps, you have to try the jeans now to know their fit. Your waistline may still be a little loose in this step.

If your jeans fit well and satisfy your altering needs, you won’t have to sew again. But, if you’re not happy with the fit, you may have to side seams the waistline again.

Step 6: Unfold And Finishing Touch

In the final step, you have to finish your waistband. If you want a neat and clean-looking waistband, you have to unfold it before stitching.

So, unfold the unpicked waistband of your jeans and place it all together, facing each other at the right sides.

Now, sew them back together and fold the waistband back to its original shape. In addition, sew back the belt loops, and the waistline of your jeans just got decreased. 

Perks Of Decreasing The Waistline On Jeans

If you decrease the waistline on your jeans, you will enjoy a comfortable and fitting experience. In addition, it has become a fashionable trend to wear jeans with a decreased or tight waistline. There are several benefits or perks of decreasing the waistline on jeans, such as:

1.   No Need For Belts or Suspenders

If your jeans are loose, you probably have to wear belts or suspenders to make them stay up. At times, your belt may not be expensive and degrade your overall outlook.

Even wearing suspenders can be uncomfortable for many people. So, decreasing your jeans’ waistline comes as the best option. It gives you the benefit of not wearing any belt or suspender. Moreover, you can wear any jeans and go out without worrying about matching belts or suspenders.

2.   Better Looking Jeans

Nowadays, people prefer to wear low-rise or tight-fit jeans. You can see many celebrities wearing fit jeans in concerts. Why so? Is it only comfort? 

Well, now it has become a fashionable trend to wear jeans with short or fitting waistlines. You can also alter the legs of your jeans for a perfect fit. If you decrease the waistline of your jeans, they will fit tightly in your waist as well as your legs. 

So, ultimately you will enjoy the benefit of wearing better-looking jeans compared to those loose yet discomforting jeans.

3.   Form-Fitting Appearance

Whatever the size of your waistline, you can decrease the waistline of the jeans by altering them. You can create a form-fitting appearance for your outfit with tight yet efficient jeans wear.

How To Take In The Waistline Of Jeans By Hand Sewing?

If you are away from your house or workstation, you can always use your hand sewing skills. It is pretty simple and easy to take in the waistline of jeans by hand sewing method.

You have to put on the jeans on a flat surface. Then, you have to pin in the center back seam of the jeans. This will ensure the falling of your center topstitching to one side.

So, now pull the waistline snug and cover up the excess fabric with a large-sized safety pin. You have to keep pinching out the excess material until there’s no extra left for pinning.

Finally, with the correct seam allowance, you can sew them with thick sewing needles by your hands.

How Can You Shrink The Waistline Of Jeans Effectively?

One of the quick, easy, and effective ways to shrink the waistline of your jeans is by washing and drying. You have to wash your jeans in hot water and dry them at a hot temperature.

You have to keep washing your jeans, especially around the waistline, for a few days in hot water. Also, you have to dry the jeans at a high room temperature or on extremely sunny days.

This technique will give you a permanent shrinkage of your jeans and an effective decrease in your jeans’ waistline.


Hello, I am Jessica Flores, and you are welcome to my website. I am a professional fashion designer and a seamstress. I always carried a passion for craftwork. My love for craft grew along with time. I have spent years researching and practicing in this field to gather colossal experience.

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