Can Leggings Be Taken In? (Can Workout Leggings Be Tailored?)

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If you’re petite and wearing leggings is your favorite thing in the world… you probably don’t want to hear this… but they don’t always fit. That’s especially true if they’re too long or too loose around the waist. What to do? Take them in!

Some people are scared to try it… but it’s really not hard at all. It will take a little time and effort… but for now… think of it as a fun project. You’ll have an item that fits and looks great. Plus… when you wear them out and about… you’ll be the most stylish person there!

Can Leggings Be Taken In?

They can! It’s an easy fix that doesn’t involve a sewing machine. It does require some patience and a little bit of time to get the job done. Let’s start with the bad news: you can’t take in leggings without cutting the fabric.

The good news is you don’t have to worry about ruining your leggings if you’re careful… and it really only takes one or two snips to make a pair of pants work for you again.

  1. The first step is to try on the pants and mark where they need to be taken in with a pen or pencil. This could mean taking them in at the waist… at the hips… or both places.
  2. Draw lines right over the stitching that secures the pants together at these points. If you’re working with cotton leggings… be sure that you use something like chalk or a washable fabric marker so you can easily remove your marks when you’re done.
  3. You’ll need to cut away excess fabric from each line you’ve drawn. Use sharp scissors to get a clean cut and make sure not to remove any of the stitching while you’re cutting (you want to preserve as much of that seam as possible).
  4. The final step is hemming. Turn up about an inch (2 cm) of fabric on all four sides… fold it under and sew it down using a zigzag stitch.

How Do You Make Leggings Fit That Are Too Big?

It’s a regular problem for us. We find a pair of leggings that we love… only to find that they’re either too big or too small. Luckily… there is a way to make leggings fit that is too big… so you can walk around in style and comfort.

Tighten the waistband

If your leggings sag in the middle from being too big… you can tighten them up by pulling the waistband upward and sewing it back down again. This works best if you have a sewing machine at home… but you could also hand stitch the waistband in place once you’ve pulled it upwards. It won’t be as sturdy as having it sewn on your machine… but it will be better than what you had before. Sewn-on elastic will also help these stay up better than just pulling them up with the waistband.

Add an inner lining

If the leggings are still too loose around your legs… you can simply add an inner lining to the leggings themselves. You can use any fabric you want for this – even thinner leggings or tights! Just cut out a long rectangle slightly smaller than the size of your leg hole… and sew it in place inside of your legging.


If the legs are too big around my calves… I just scrunch them up into a tight ball at the top of my leg and hold it with one hand. Then I pull down on my leggings with my other hand until they’re tight enough for me. If there isn’t enough material left after that… so what? It’s not like people are going to see them anyway!


If the legs are too loose around my thighs… then I just pull them as close as they’ll go to my waist and use a safety pin to secure the overlap. That keeps everything held together in one place where it should be and out of sight.

How Do You Size Down in Leggings?

Sizing down in leggings is a lot like sizing down in clothes. The smaller size will be snug… but it will stretch and mold to your body shape. You’ll find that the bigger sizes have a bit more wiggle room… which is great when you’re just lounging around the house or running errands.


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It’s all about finding the right fit for your shape. If you’re petite… you might want to size down so they don’t bunch up around your ankles.

But if you have muscular thighs… you might want to size up one size to avoid gaping at the waistband. In other words… get what works for you!

How Can I Make My Leggings Smaller Without Sewing?

You could definitely shrink leggings in the washer… but the best way to do this is to use the gentle cycle on cold water with no detergent and then hang them to dry.

If you add detergent or put them in the dryer… you will probably ruin them. If you want to get rid of excess fabric… you can try using a thin seam ripper and taking out some stitches in the seams around the crotch area.

You can also try putting them in the dryer with a load of towels or something similar and letting it run for about 20 minutes on low (or delicate) heat. That should help set their shape and take out some excess fabric.

But here is a great video showing you how to solve the problem quickly and easily:

Can I Cut Leggings to Make Them Shorter?

Some people find that their leggings are too long no matter what they do. One common reason for this is that the style of the leggings just happens to fall longer on your legs than others’. If you simply don’t like the way they look at you because they’re too long and you want to change that… there is a simple fix: Cut them yourself!

You can cut leggings to make them shorter by using a pair of scissors or a seam ripper. When cutting the fabric… try to ensure that you don’t cut into any seams. If you decide to cut the seam… do so away from any seams along the legs so you don’t weaken the integrity of the seams.

Cutting leggings is a great way to salvage an old pair of pants that may have worn thin at the bottom or a pair that were too long in the legs and rode up when you wore them. Shortening leggings will allow you to wear them again and will give you more options for wearing those clothes that no longer fit your current fashion sense.

  1. Measure where you want your pants to hit on your leg. For capris… I don’t like pants that go below my knees… so I took my measurement from my knee down to the desired length on my thigh.
  2. Cut off the bottom 6-7 inches of the legs and remove any tags/seams.
  3. Sew up the side seams.
  4. Hem or just leave raw edges if you like that look better.

Can Leggings Be Stitched?

Yes… leggings can be stitched. The way you stitch them will depend on what type of fabric you are using. If you are working with a heavy-weight fabric (such as denim) then it is best to use a heavier-duty sewing machine.

If your leggings are made from a lighter-weight fabric (such as spandex) then you can use a smaller more portable sewing machine.

You just have to make sure that the stitching will not be able to be seen from the outside of the legging.

You should know that stitching leggings require a sewing machine with a zigzag stitch. Also… it would be better if you had some experience in using a sewing machine. It’s not really complicated but it’s much easier if you’ve used one before.

To stitch your leggings… start by picking the spot where you want to place the first stitch. Also… choose thread colors that match your leggings. At this point… do a test run on some scrap fabric so that you won’t have any problems once you start sewing on your leggings.

Can You Hem Gym Leggings?

The answer is yes… you can hem your gym leggings. You might have to do some research to find out how much and what type of stitching will be used… but you can definitely do it yourself. However… you still have to make sure that the leggings are not see-through.


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Step 1: Measure your leggings. You want to measure from the waistband down to the spot where you would like to have your new hem. Also… make sure that your measurements are consistent. If they are not consistent then the leggings will not look as good once finished being hemmed because one leg will be longer than the other one.

Step 2: Decide on a stitch pattern for your new hem. There are several different stitches that could be used for this project. It all depends on how thick of a thread you are using and how sturdy you want your hem to be. I would recommend using a sewing machine for this step because it will be quicker and take less room than hand sewing the leggings back together with a needle and thread.

Step 3:  Sewing the hems back in place is going to be the hard part of this project. You’re not only doing a straight stitch… you’re also going to be zigzagging the fabric. A zigzag stitch is much better for hems than a basic straight stitch because it grips the fabric more… which will make it so that your leggings don’t get any runs when you wear them.

As with the original hem… start about 1/4″ from the edge and sew down for about an inch… then stop. Then go back up to where you left off and continue sewing over your zigzag stitch line until you get to the bottom of your pants leg. Backstitch (sew backward) at the beginning and end of your stitching to make sure that it doesn’t come apart while you’re wearing them or washing them.

Trim all of your loose threads… and then try on your leggings! If they fit correctly… then you did it! If they are too big or too small… go back and try again to choose different settings on the machine.

Trying to hem your own gym leggings can be easy if you follow some simple rules. If you’re not sure how there’s no need to worry. You can make a mistake… but the worst possible outcome is that you’ll have to throw it out and buy a new pair. Nobody will know and you’ll save yourself some money.

You may want to avoid using this method on expensive leggings because it might not work very well. The materials may be too thick or sturdy for this method to work effectively enough for your needs. Make sure these are your last resort before throwing them out entirely.

Can Workout Leggings Be Tailored?

Anyone with a pair of workout leggings knows how hard it can be to get them to fit right. They are often form-fitting and not very forgiving… which is precisely why they look so cute…but not always great for fitting in those areas you wish they would.

Tailoring workout leggings can make them work for your body type instead of against it.

So yes… you can tailor your workout leggings. The great thing about this fabric is that it is a very stretchy material… which means that if you don’t like the way a pair fits in the waist… you can have them taken in without having to worry about making a seamstress take the fabric in too much. You will not lose any of the stretchiness and they will feel just as comfortable as before.

Tailoring Your Workout Leggings

You can turn any pair of workout leggings into a great pair of pants by taking them to a tailor. It’s actually quite easy. Just find someone who specializes in working with stretch fabrics and they should be able to take them in for you right there in their shop. You might have to wait while they work on them… but it shouldn’t be longer than an hour or so.

Tailored workout leggings will make you look like an athlete and help you feel more confident while working out. You can wear them with a tank top or t-shirt and a sports bra. They will be the right length to keep your legs warm during the cool autumn weather and they can also double as casual pants.

In summary… So… you’ve bought a pair of leggings that are too big and you want to make them fit. Can they be taken in? or… how do you size down in leggings? The short answer is yes. There are many ways to do it without sewing. They can be cut to make them shorter if needed.

Or you can use pockets to make the leggings smaller. If that isn’t enough… then all you have to do is hem gym leggings when you get home from the store and they’ll be the perfect length.

You may also be interested in. Do Leggings Make You Look Slimmer?Do Leggings Go with Dresses? and How Do Athleta Leggings Fit?