I have been wanting to find some kick crop (a.k.a. cropped flare) jeans since last spring. I love my skinny jeans, but I also love the idea of some raw-hem cropped flares that are a little looser. I tried Banana Republic’s Cropped Girlfriend jeans which fit really well and looked great on me, but were just too long. On a person with longer legs they would be absolutely perfect loose/slightly flared crops, but on me they just looked like straight-cut raw-hem jeans. Not what I was going for.
Then I requested some cropped flares or kick crops from Stitch Fix. They sent me a pair in my most recent Fix that had great details like a button fly and raw hem, and they did have a nice feel and stretch, but I just didn’t feel like they were very flattering on me (see photo below).
They just give me too much width at the hips in my opinion.
So I was about to give up, but then I decided to cut off an old pair of Gap bootcut jeans. These jeans are an old favorite of mine, purchased back around the year 2002. Yep, that old. Anyway, I have always liked the way they fit, but I quit wearing them a few years ago because they’re bootcut. I know most stylists and fashion magazines have been saying bootcut is still an option, but they just feel dowdy to me at the moment.
Here’s how the cut-off Gap bootcut jeans turned out:
Pretty good if I do say so myself! I am particularly thrilled because this is not my first attempt at cutting off jeans…. In fact, I’ve tried it a few times before with an old favorite pair of straight-cut Levi’s from around the same era (early 2000’s) and they did not turn out very well. Part of the problem was that I cut them off a bit too high. The other problem is the waist is a little higher and the knees and cuffs are about the same width, so they don’t have a great shape for cropped jeans. These good ‘ole bootcut Gap jeans worked perfectly, though.
Here’s what I did to cut them off:
- Put the jeans on.
- Roll up (cuff) the bottom of the jeans and then see how the length looks in a full-length mirror. Adjust the cuff as necessary.
- Cut a little slit or hole at the bottom of the fold/rolled part to mark the length you want to achieve. Repeat this on the other leg.
- Take the jeans off lay them on a flat surface and, using the little cuts you made, cut the jeans straight across.
- Put the jeans back on and check the length. If it looks good, you’re done!
- **To make them perfect, you’ll want to wash and dry them to make your frayed edge softer.
I had NOT yet washed and dried them in the photos here, so they’re not fraying all that much. I can’t wait to see how much better the edges look once they’re frayed a little more. I did pull a few threads to start making the edges a little stringy. I made sure to cut off the long strings — I prefer just short ones all around.
All in all, they turned out much better than I had expected. I would definitely do this again if I had a similar pair of old jeans.
For those of you who prefer new jeans in this style, though, I rounded up a few options, including the really cute Banana Republic ones I was too short-legged for.
Have you had good luck cropping your own jeans? My luck has mostly been bad, but this time it turned out really good. If you have any tried-and-true tips for cutting off your old jeans, please share!