How To Make Running Shorts

Running shorts are a crucial part of any runner’s wardrobe. They provide the freedom of movement and comfort necessary for a great workout. While there are countless options available for purchase, making your own running shorts can be a fun and rewarding project. Today, I’ll guide you through the process of making your own running shorts, adding personal touches and commentary along the way.

Gathering Materials

Before we get started, let’s gather the materials we’ll need:

  1. Fabric: Look for a lightweight and breathable fabric, such as moisture-wicking polyester or nylon.
  2. Elastic: Choose elastic that is comfortable and securely holds the shorts in place.
  3. Thread: Select a matching thread color for a clean and professional finish.
  4. Scissors: A good pair of fabric scissors is essential for cutting the fabric accurately.
  5. Sewing machine: While hand sewing is an option, a sewing machine will make the process faster and more efficient.
  6. Measuring tape: Accurate measurements are crucial for a well-fitting pair of running shorts.
  7. Optional: Trimming, drawstring, or other embellishments to add a personal touch to your shorts.

Pattern and Cutting

Once you have all the necessary materials, it’s time to create a pattern. You can either use an existing pattern or create your own by tracing a pair of well-fitting shorts. Make sure to add seam allowances for sewing.

Next, place your fabric on a flat surface and pin the pattern to it. Take your time to align the fabric properly, ensuring that the grainline is parallel to the selvage. Carefully cut around the pattern, following the lines.


With the fabric pieces cut out, it’s time to start sewing. Begin by sewing the inseam of the shorts. Pin the front and back pieces together, right sides facing, and sew along the inseam using a straight stitch. Finish the raw edges with a serger or zigzag stitch to prevent fraying.

Next, fold over the waistband and sew a straight stitch along the top, leaving a small opening to insert the elastic. Measure the elastic around your waist to ensure a comfortable fit, then thread it through the waistband using a safety pin. Once the elastic is in place, sew the waistband closed and secure the ends of the elastic together.

Lastly, hem the bottom of the shorts by folding the raw edge over twice and sewing a straight stitch. This will give your shorts a neat and finished appearance.

Personal Touches

Now that you have the basic running shorts complete, it’s time to add some personal touches. You can choose to add decorative trims, such as reflective strips for increased visibility during night runs or a contrasting color for a unique look.

If you prefer a drawstring closure, create two small buttonholes on the front of the waistband and thread a drawstring through them. This will allow you to adjust the waistband to your desired tightness.


Making your own running shorts can be a fun and rewarding project. By choosing your fabric, perfecting the fit, and adding personalized touches, you’ll have a pair of shorts that are uniquely yours. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced sewer, this DIY project is a great way to showcase your creativity and achieve a comfortable and stylish workout gear. So grab your materials and get ready to hit the pavement in your very own handmade running shorts!