Monday, September 9, 2013

Legging DIY - Bleach Pen Tribal Print and Knee Patches!

Last week I mentioned that I have been updating some of the kids' hand-me-downs.  These leggings are one of the projects that I did over the weekend.  I started out with a black pair of leggings that were in the back of the closet.  I didn't love the fit on Pearl as they were a little baggy for a basic pair of leggings.  I decided to update them into something more fun. I chose to make them unisex so Axel can also wear them down the road.
I started by drawing my print with a bleach pen.  I put pieces of thick paper inside the legs so it didn't bleed through.  I drew on the front side, waited just a few minutes, and threw them in the washing machine and dryer.  After they were completely dry (and nap time rolled around) I drew on the back side.  Then I washed and dried them again.  I chose to draw just simple shapes and didn't try to make it perfect because I wanted the final result to look hand done.  It's also really hard to keep your work perfect with a bleach pen so I wouldn't recommend trying.
View 1 - leggings before. View 2 - after drawing with bleach on the front side.
For the next step I picked out a fabric with similar stretch to the legging material.  I tried the leggings on Pearl to determine the location of her knees.  Then I cut ovals out in the fabric for knee patches.  I pinned them in place and sewed them on with a zigzag stitch.  The zigzag will allow the patched area to stretch correctly as she moves and also helps keep the unfinished edge clean.
Adding knee patches is especially great for crawling babies as it adds durability to the knees and keeps the pants from wearing out.  I plan to add patches to a bunch of Axel's handed down jeans once he starts crawling.  So many of Pearl's pants wore out during her crawling stage.
Let me know if you try it!  If you have any questions, please ask.


  1. This is such a great idea and I love what you did with them! Thanks for sharing :)

  2. Knee patches are so smart! And so cute with the matching headband!

  3. Whenever I have a baby I just want you to make all their clothes okay? Seriously so cute and creative!

  4. So adorable. I love the matching headband to boot!

  5. Such a great idea! I never thought to try to bring new life to hand-me-downs! Now I want to dig through little man's closet, but I will have to wait until the morning when he is awake.

  6. these are so cute! now i need to hurry and buy a bleach pen.

  7. This is the coolest DIY ever! I had no idea bleach pens even existed. Pearl just gets cuter and cuter.


  8. I love this! Our daughter mainly wears her older brother's pants (which are often faded blue baby sweats), and this is the perfect DIY to spice them up a bit. The patches are great, too. Excellent idea!


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