Braided DIY Leggings Design


Fashion Hacks to Upcycle Old Clothes | No Sewing

Today I'm upcycling my old tights/leggings into cut-out and braided leggings. These ripped leggings have a super cool punk rock goth vibe that I love to wear with all my skirts.


  • 1. Step one is to fold your leggings in half make sure that your seams match up as closely as possible.

  • 2. Next, take your ruler and put it right where you want the cuts to be. Remember the cuts will be twice as wide when you open the leggings up. I usually put it right about in the center. I also like to line up the marks on the ruler with my cutting mat so that way I can cut a perfectly straight line.

  • 3. I always make my first cut a little bit smaller than the rest of them. Since these are a size small legging, I'm not going to go all the way into the ruler. I like to have them come down a little bit before I start the cuts, so I'm going to start right here. I always make the last cut a little smaller too.

  • 4. Now that we have all the cuts done, we stretch them out. I stretch each strand individually. That's how you get them to curl and stretch the best and I just hold the leggings as I do it. See how they curl, that's exactly what you want.

  • 5. Now it's time to unfold the leggings. I like to stretch them out just a little bit more once they're unfolded too. An easy way that you can do this is by putting your arms in and pulling them this like this.

  • 6. Now for my trick -- I have a mannequin leg! Since I make these pants pretty regularly and sell them on my Revival Ink website this has sped up my process for being able to make them. If you don't have a mannequin leg, you can borrow a friend's leg, do it on your arm, or flat on a table.

  • 7. We're going to do that same weaving technique that I've shown you before on shirts I've made.

  • 8. To start the braid (or weave) -- take your top strand and pull the next one through it. Always pulling the next one through until you get all the way to the bottom. The reason why we left that other hole a little bit smaller is it just makes it easier to tie it off. It looks nice if you use a scrap of a t-shirt to make a rope to tie off the end of your leggings. 
  • 9. You'll want to cut up a piece of scrap t-shirt fabric I usually save the sleeves for this task, they work really well. Cut it about a half-inch wide. Then, stretch it to make it into a rope. Cut off any seams if you have them. Make the rope long enough to tie a square knot.

  • 10. When I tie the knot I usually tie it facing the bottom. I've found it looks nicer that way with a little square knot. If you like the look of the ties, you can leave them on, but I usually cut them off.

    legging tie
  • 11. Let's go ahead and do the other leg. This is how they look when they're not on a leg. When weaving, it helps to pull up the strand under and then hand it to myself as I go. That's how I can do this so quickly. If you can't tell, I have had a lot of practice. It definitely gets easier after you do it a couple of times. Now we're all the way to the end. I just love how fun this looks! 

These leggings hold up really well. I've had my pair for several years now. They've been to Burning Man and back, and washed several times with no issues whatsoever. Just make sure that you tie your square knots nice and tight and they'll stay forever.

I hope you enjoyed today's DIY tutorial on how to make these awesome leggings. For more cool projects, download my free DIY T-Shirt Hacks Ebook

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