Pajama Leg Hack – How to Keep your Pant Legs from Riding Up

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

These is nothing worse than trying to go to sleep, and having to fight with your pajama pants to keep them down. I love this Pajama Hack by Melissa of the Sewing Rabbit Team, and her solution to helping solve this annoying problem.  By adding a hidden layer of elastic underneath the bottom of the hem, she not only keeps the pants down, but she does it without altering the look of your pants. How to keep your pant legs from riding up – genius!

Pajama Leg Hack – How to Keep your Pant Legs from Riding Up.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

Christmas 2012, I asked for a pair of pajamas and received a flannel set from Santa. Woohoo!! I was so excited that I changed into them immediately and they’ve been my favorite sleepwear ever since. But my affections have waned lately; the wide leg design means the fabric creeps up on me when I’m climbing into bed and trying to get into my optimal sleep position.  Then, I try to pinch the fabric with the toes of my other foot to pull it back down where it belongs. Once I do fall asleep, I dream that I am running as fast as I can, trying to merge into traffic like a car, but I can’t run fast enough because my pajama pants are tripping me. Dreams are weird/tough enough as it is, without wardrobe failure added in the mix. As the Mitch Hedberg joke goes:

I hate dreaming, because when you wanna sleep, you wanna sleep. Dreaming is work, you know? Like there I am, laying in my comfortable bed in my hotel room… next thing I know, I have to build a go-cart with my ex-landlord.

Normally, I’d say to just make a little cut in the hem, insert some elastic and be done with the whole matter. But these jammies are too cute, so I wanted them to still look like a wide leg, without the elastic showing. Thus, enough of mimicking LL Cool J, it’s pajama hacking time!

Supplies:

  • 1/4 yard of 2×1 ribbed knit fabric (medium weight jersey would work fine as well)
  • less than 1/2 yard of elastic (you can use scrap pieces, so whatever width elastic you have or like best will work fine)
  • Ruler
  • Measuring Tape

1. Measure the leg circumference of your pajamas. Mine came in at 20.25 inches; since the fabric stretches, I just used 20 inches to make measuring easier to remember.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

2. Measure the depth of the cuff; if yours don’t have a cuff, just pick an amount to use as your distance from the hem, no more than 2-4 inches. Mine came in at 2 inches, plus 1/2 inch seam allowance at the top.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

3. Measure around the heel of your foot and ankle together; this is the widest part of your foot and we want to make sure it can fit through the new elasticized panel opening. This was 11 inches for me.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

4. Measure around your ankle. This was 8.5 inches for me. You’ll want to use a measurement that is a little less than your ankle measurement. Since this will be elasticized, it will stretch over your foot easily. I tested out a 7 inch piece of elastic and was able to get my foot through easily. If you make it too big, the elastic won’t fit snugly under calf area and that would defeat the purpose.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

5. Mark your fabric, like in the diagram below, adding 1/4 inch seam allowance on the sides and 1/2 inch seam allowance on the top and bottom lines. I didn’t want a lot of extra gathering in the elastic area, so I left it at 7 inches”. There’s enough stretch in my fabric to accommodate the little I will lose when I connect the two ends of the elastic to make a loop. Make sure to substitute the measurements below with the measurements for your pajama pants.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

6. Cut out 4 pieces of your hourglass shaped piece.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

*Note: all further instructions will be for one pant leg; I recommend doing each step for both legs before moving to the next step, to make it faster.

7. Pin 2 of the pieces together, right sides together.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

8. Stitch 1/4 inch seam on the v-shape sides, pivoting when you reach the middle.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

9. Clip the corners at the top and clip a slit into the v: to, but not through, the stitches.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

10. Press your seam allowances open.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

11. Fold wrong sides together and press the trapezoid piece with the right sides out, creating a nice crease line where the elastic will sit at the bottom.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

12. Curl your elastic around to create a loop, overlapping less than 1/2 inch. Stitch the overlapped edges of the elastic together.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

13. Place the elastic loop down into the ironed crease.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

 

14. Pin elastic in place in center of crease.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

15. Using a zig-zag stitch, stitch the elastic down inside the crease. You’ll need to lightly stretch on the fabric and elastic as your stitching. The opening of the piece was just wide enough to get over my sewing machine arm, so that provided enough stretch for me to work my way around.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

16. Your piece will have a point on both sides; cut off the access into a gentle, rounded curve, which will make it easier to attach to the leg of your pajama.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

17. With the elastic portion pointing up into the leg of the pajama, on the inside of the fabric, pin the elasticized panel into place. My pajamas have an embellished cuff piece, which are the stitch lines I used as my guideline for attaching the panel. If your pj pants don’t have that, just use the measurement you decided on earlier as your distance to pin away from the hem.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

18. Stitching into the trim, or into your cuffs’ stitching line, stitch the elasticized panel into place. No need for zig-zag stitches here; you want the stitching to be as minimal as possible.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

19. Turn the elasticized panel down towards the hem. Now, you have it; a semi-free-floating elasticized pant leg.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

Voila! You can’t even see the hidden panel on the inside. Now, I’m ready to fall asleep easily and dream sweet, hassle-free-pants dreams, where I’ll dance the night away with Fred Astaire, while a purple, rollerskating aardvark critiques our style and panache. LL Cool J, it’s cool if you want to come also, but you’ve got to put your pant legs down. And, bring cookies while you’re at it.

Pajama Leg Hack - Keep Pants from Riding while you sleep with this easy DIY

As always, thanks so much for stopping by and until next time…

Happy Sewing!

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Melissa H

Contributor at Sewing Rabbit Team
Founder of EcoArmoire, Melissa has a passion for all things eco-friendly and sustainable, which comes out in her sewing.From women's, to children, to men's, to entire wedding parties - Melissa does it all!
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Comments

  1. Tara says

    Never woulda thought of it! I had abandoned wide leg pajamas over this issue. Now I just have pajama leggings from target and my husband eyes me hungrily whenever I’m wearing them. Lol!

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