Tuesday, January 21, 2014

undies hack

Undies Hack

Oh the state of men's underwear. I have made several pairs for myself, friends and partners over the years, but often I find myself having to buy them. I have larger battles in my life, trust me, and falling through the size-cracks of conglomerate underwear makers is not one of them (I fall right between 30" and 32"). Also, I refuse to advertise for them whenever I bend over. My solution is to cut away the waistline elastic, and take a few hours to customize.

1. Cut the large elastics off the waistline of the underwear. I will be saving these for other projects of course.
2. Next, I pin the new waistline into a tube around the top to accommodate the width of elastic I want to use, and sew it into place using a straight stretch seam, and a zig-zag (I do not have a surger). Remember to leave about a half inch free to "thread" the new elastic through.
3. Cut the elastic to a desired length, and pierce it with a small safety-pin. This will give you something solid to pull through the tube around the waistline.
4. Once you have gone around the waist with the elastic, remove the safety pin, and sew the two ends together with at least a 1/2" overlap. Take a second to make sure that the elastic didn't get a twist in it as you were threading it through. A twist in one's underwear elastic can be very annoying.

5. Once your elastic is sewn into a strong loop, you can pull the waistline taut, and close the remaining hole. Voila! better fitting men's underwear, with no advertising for fruit of the loom. You can stop here, or I like to put some customizing touches on whatever I am making, to give it that one-of-a-kind status. 

For this particular customization, I chose a star shape to put on the backside. First, I used a piece of scrap paper to draw out the star, cut it out and checked the placement. Next I traced it onto a piece of scrap yellow fabric.

then, I traced the shape onto the yellow fabric, and cut it out. Placing the star where I wanted it onto the underwear, I then pinned it.

Almost there! All that is left is to sew the star in place (you may want to reinforce the seam with another strip of fabric around the perimeter to give it strength), and cut out the star just inside the seam, careful not to snip the fabric you want to stay.
..... and there you go. Taking factory made underwear and turning into a one of a kind custom work of art for your (or your sweety-pie's) backside.