How To Make Pants Bigger Around The Waist

Do you want to make pants bigger around the waist without having to go and buy new ones? Well, here is a little article on how you can make pants bigger in the waist really easily.

To make your pants bigger around the waist, just take a pair of scissors and cut out little round holes around the trim on the waist of the pants. This makes it so your pants will fit bigger in the waist because you can tighten them with a small bit of string or elastic ripped from an old pair of underwear.

If you don’t have any old pairs of underwear, just take off one of your socks and tear a piece off of the top part. You can use this as a string or elastic to tighten your pants around the waist.

In this article, I will explain how to make pants bigger around the waist with no reason to go and buy new ones. I will also explain how to keep your pants up with no belt or suspenders.

Can Pants Be Made Bigger Around The Waist?

The answer to this question is YES. Pants can be made larger around the waist with just a few simple alterations and sometimes you don’t even need an alteration! And if you think about it, pants that are too large around the waist wouldn’t just look odd, they would also be very uncomfortable to wear.

When should you make pants bigger around the waist?

You might want to make pants bigger around the waist for one of two reasons. Either your pants are too small or they are too big. If your pants are too small then that’s great, because now you can just make them bigger!

However, if your pants are too big then you will have to take them in around the waist. Make sure that your pants fit comfortably around the waist before cutting them open because it’s going to be difficult to make a pair of pants smaller than they already are.

Which parts of a pant should I increase?

When making larger holes for bigger pants, don’t go too close to the seams or you will ruin the pants. Just cut a few holes around the trim and rip out extra fabric from the inside of the waistband. The waist can be widened by about four inches this way and you should leave enough fabric so that your pants don’t look uneven when they are on.

How To Make Pants Bigger Around the Waist: 10 Ways

Following are the 6 easy ways to increase the size of your pants around the waist, whether you have purchased them or made them yourself.

1) Sew Elastic To The Waist Line

Fashion pants are worn tighter than normal pants, so they will pull down at the waist when you sit or bend over. This can be easily prevented by sewing elastic right along the inside waistband.

Sew the elastic all the way around the waistline from one side to the other, then back again in a loop when you have gone all the way around.

This will keep your pants from falling down and provide a much more comfortable fit.

2) Add A Drawstring

If you don’t want to add any casing/elastic to your waistband, or if you can’t because of how it’s constructed, use a drawstring instead.

There are many different kinds of drawstrings that work perfectly for this purpose like fabric, yarn, elastic cord (that looks like a shoelace), twill tape (that looks like ribbon).

You can even get creative and use two strings sewn together end-to-end to form a loop. The possibilities are endless with this one.

3) Add Buttons To Thicken Your Waistband

If you have a pair of pants that needs thickening, sew on some buttons. If you can’t or don’t want to do it yourself, take your pants to a dry cleaner and they will usually be happy to add them for just a few dollars per button.

I’m still trying to figure out why no designer has come up with this as an original idea yet! To add buttons to pants, simply sew them directly onto the fabric of your waistband.

You may have to take in the waistband slightly to compensate for the thickness of the buttons.

4) Use Extra Fabric For A Tailored Look

You can also use pleats as well as fold-over elastic (FOE) for this purpose if you happen to have either one of those available in the color you need. Look for pants that have these features in the size you need it in, then cut them off and use them on your next pair of pants.

This works great when you are sewing a pair of pants for yourself because you can make sure everything is exactly the way you want it to be!

5) Use Fusible Interfacing To Thicken Your Waistband

Another way to add thickness to the waistband of jeans or dress pants is by using fusible interfacing. The interfacing will not fray when sewn into the seam allowance, so it’s very easy to do.

Just sew along each side with a slightly shorter stitch length than usual (10-12 spi). You don’t even need any pins because the interfacing sticks to the fabric on its own. Just fuse it down with an iron and you’re finished!

6) Add A Darted Waistband

Your pants can also be made bigger around the waist by adding darts. This is great for knits because it’s nearly impossible to sew elastic into a knit waistband without sewing through too many layers of fabric. With the dart, your fabric won’t pull or stretch out of shape like it would if elastic was used instead.

The darts are very easy to do as well; just mark them (I use chalk), then stitch along one side first, pivot, then stitch across the bottom to make a triangle on each side of the seam allowance for about ½ inch long. Then cut them out and finish the rest of the seam as usual.

7) Add Gores To A Plain Pants Hem

If you don’t like darts, you can use gores instead (if your pants are already gathered at the waist). Just cut out some triangles that will fit along the edge of the hemline and sew them on instead. Then finish the hem as usual.

You’ll want to mark where to put your gores so they look even when finished. If you aren’t sure how to do it yourself, follow these easy directions.

  1. Fold the bottom up ½ inch, then another ½ inch.
  2. Draw a line from where you’re going to place your first gore to where your last one will be.
  3. Use a ruler to connect these points with a straight line and cut along it so all of your gores are exactly the same size and evenly spaced apart on each side.

Don’t worry if they aren’t perfect because you’ll be trimming the excess off in the end anyway. And that’s how to make pants bigger around the waist!

8) Use Elastic For An Instant Fit Makeover

No matter what kind of pants you have, small around the waist or just not fitting quite right for one reason or another, using elastic is always an option.

It’s great because all you need to do is sew some on using a zigzag or stretch stitch and you’re finished!

This works great for pants that fit well around the hips and legs, but just need a little more room around the waist. To figure out how much elastic to use, just measure your favorite pair of pants and add about 4 inches so they’ll overlap. You can also shorten pants by adding an elastic panel at the hemline instead.

This is especially nice if the legs are very wide because it will make them more slimming as well as comfortable to wear longer. If you don’t want to deal with sewing in any kind of elastic yourself, most dry cleaners offer this service for only a few dollars per inch of elastic used.

9) Add A Gathered Waist Band For Comfort

I used to have a pair of pants that just didn’t fit around the waist no matter what. They were perfect everywhere else but I couldn’t wear them because it was very uncomfortable. Eventually, I just cut off the elastic waistband and made my own gathered band instead. It turned out great!

For this, you can either sew in some new elastic yourself or take your garment to a dry cleaner who will be happy to do it for you. All you need to do is measure your favorite pair of pants and add about 3-4 inches so they overlap when finished (don’t use more than 5 inches though).

Then all you need to do is finish the hemline like usual (or you can make a band with bias tape for a nice decorative touch).

10) Use Elastic Tape To Make Pants Bigger Around The Waist

You can also use elastic tape for an instant fix if you don’t want to do any sewing at all. Just cut strips long enough so they overlap by about 3 inches when finished (don’t add more than 5 inches though). Then tack them together on one end with needle and thread so they form a circle.

Now sew around that circle with a zigzag stitch to keep the elastic together. Once your waistband is finished, make sure you tack it down onto the pants so it won’t move out of place or slide around on you.

How to Make Jeans Pants Waist Bigger

If you’ve ever looked for denim jeans to fit with the waist too tight what you can do is very simple. Turn your pants inside out and sew 2-3 stitches with needle and thread over each side of the waistband right where it’s too tight on your hips.

Then cut with scissors right next to those stitches so they’ll be hidden by the side seams. If you make a very small line of stitches like this, the hole will be practically invisible and won’t tear bigger.

This trick also works great if your waistband is too big; just sew some stitches right in the middle to take it up a notch and you’ll look like a million bucks!

Things To Remember While Making Pants Bigger Around The Waist
Be sure to choose a stretch fabric that you’re comfortable with. This is especially important when it comes to knits because the waistband will stretch out in no time if it’s made of cheap fabric.

If you want to make pants bigger around the waist but use less fabric, try adding gores instead (if your pants are breezy and flared already). Just cut out some triangles that will fit along the edge of the hemline and sew them on instead. Then finish the hem as usual.

When you’re taking your pants to a dry cleaner to have the waistband replaced, try also getting your hems done at the same time. It’s better for them if they don’t have so many different kinds of work to do at once, plus it saves time and money on gas since you can just go right there.

Also, if you need to take pants in but don’t want a whole new waistband sewn on, try this: just put a pocket inside the pants and sew it right onto where it needs to be taken in. This way you can unbutton the pocket and lift up the flap whenever you need more room around your hips.

How to Keep Pants Up Without Belts?

Belts are the most popular of all the ways of keeping your pants up. However, wearing them can sometimes be uncomfortable and they might also damage your clothes at one time or another. Here are some tips for keeping your pants up without belts that will make you wonder why you ever used belted trousers in the first place.

  1. The extra wide belt loop method

This is the classic style that has been used for a very long time and it’s still going strong today. It requires you to create a large enough gap between two adjacent belt loops so that your trousers can be fed through them both at once, thus avoiding any need for belts.

  1. The twist tie method

Twist ties work really well to keep your pants up and they are very easy to get hold of. You will need about four or five ties for this, although I would recommend that you use colored twist ties so that if someone sees them poking out then it’s less obvious than with white ones. Thread the belt through one tie then feed it back into itself, feeding the belt through all of the loops of your trousers.

  1. The sock loop method

keep your trousers up all day long and you can do it really quickly. You need to cut about an inch off the top of a sock (a tube sock works best for this) and feed your belt through both sides of it. If you don’t have any old socks then you could try using suspenders instead, but buckles look less conspicuous than clips or hooks.

  1. The hidden string method

This one takes just seconds to set up and works well if you’re wearing jeans that are very tight around the legs. Just thread some string between the waistband lining at one side then tie it in a knot that’s hidden away inside your pants..

  1. The pencil method

This is a good one for wearing with a waistcoat, because it’s fast and easy to set up. Just thread a pencil through the waistband lining of your pants at each side. The line where the pencil meets will be lower than the front or back of your pants so they won’t stick out when you bend over at all..

  1. The belt loop method

This is a really simple way to keep your pants up and obviously takes no time at all to do. You just thread a tie between two adjacent belt loops and have it pointing downwards..

  1. The button hole method

Many people don’t realize that high waisted trousers often have button holes in them, especially if they are from military surplus stores. If you thread a tie through a button hole and tie it off with a knot then you can use your pants as normal.

  1. The trouser clip method

There are several types of clips available for this, but they all work in much the same way as suspenders do. To do this with your pants, you clip one end with each hand then pull until they are at the desired tightness.

  1. The elastic tab method

This also makes use of an old trick that was used by women to keep socks up during World War One when nylon or silk stockings were difficult to come by. Follow these steps to set it up:

Cut two small slits in your waistband lining and thread a long strip of elastic through each one.

Tie the ends of each strip together with a strong knot to hold them securely in place. Then just wear your pants as normal.

  1. The pin and thread method

For those who don’t mind making a bit of a mess, this is another good one because it’s simple and effective without any reliance on other items such as pencils or ties.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I make pants bigger around the waist if I don’t have a sewing machine?

Yes, it’s actually very easy and you can do it in no time by hand with needle and thread; all you need to know is how to sew a straight stitch.

How do I make elastic waist pants fit better?

If your elastic waist pants are too tight all you need to do is sew over the band (the same way you would if they were too loose around the waist). Then cut off or fold down the excess fabric.

How can I make my pants bigger without having them taken in?

This depends on how much bigger you want your pants to be. If you just need a little extra room then try adding in gores, an elastic waistband, or a band with bias tape for a decorative touch.
If you’re looking for more than just a couple inches though, take them to the dry cleaners and have the waistband replaced instead.

Is it better to have pants that are too tight or too loose around the waist?

For overall health, it’s best if your pants fit properly around your hips without being too tight or too loose, plus this will greatly improve your appearance no matter what type of style you’re going for (if they are too tight).


So, if you’re looking to raise the stakes on your wardrobe game then try putting any of these awesome hacks into effect today. Your new pants will fit better than ever and you’ll look like a million bucks.

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