Home » How to tailor your own jeans and trousers almost as good as that cantankerous, sagely man down your local alteration service

How to tailor your own jeans and trousers almost as good as that cantankerous, sagely man down your local alteration service

Let’s face it: Unless you’re Logan Roy, there’s no way you can afford to get all your jeans and trousers cut to fit your specific measurements. That’s why so many men are self tailoring jeans and trousers. And while it might seem like a pretty daunting task at first, DIY tailoring isn’t exactly rocket science. In fact, it’s actually a lot simpler than you’d think.

While you can obviously get stuff that fits great off the rack, unsurprisingly, no two men have exactly the same proportions. Some dudes might have a slim waist and short legs, while others might have the same waist size but looong legs. If you’re happy with just settling, then, well, that’s totally fine. But if you want something that’s a little more you, here’s a guide on how to tailor your jeans and trousers like a boss.

Percival Linen Tailored Trousers

What is the best way to tailor your jeans and trousers?

Before we get started, one of the first things that we’d strongly suggest is to try everything out on an old pair before you work on the actual pair that you plan on wearing. Just like cleaning your suede shoes or learning to tie your tie, practice makes perfect. So, stop what you’re doing, venture into the hidden depths of your wardrobe, and dig out those tan chinos that haven’t seen the light of day since the end of the Mayan calendar in 2012.

Arket Regular Cotton Chinos


There are four main ways that you can tailor your own pants. The first, and probably one of the most popular adjustments, is hemming. Sometimes, off the rack jeans and trousers can be a little too long, which might break up the style’s overall silhouette. The fabric can bunch up at the top of your sneakers. Or in the worst case scenario, you could actually step on the hem and trip. A nightmare! So unless you’re actually going for that early 2000s skater look (a mood), taking up the hem is a good idea.

To start, measure the amount that you want to remove and pin it into place (make sure you do this separately for both legs as they might vary in length). Fold your pants inside-out and trim this off with a pair of sharp scissors (or dressmaking shears, if you have a pair). Double turn the hem, stitch it into place, and you’re good to go.

Carhartt WIP Collins Pant


From our experience, tapering is the second most common alteration. When you have a pair of jeans or trousers that are a little too wide, you can tailor them so that they fit a little slimmer. This is particularly useful with suit pants or those made from flowy fabrics. The first thing that you need to do is turn them inside-out. Slip them on, and pull and pinch the fabric around the inner calf and ankle area that you want to narrow down.