customizing with oliver + s: playtime leggings as playground shorts

Why does this little girl look so devious? I can tell she’s up to no good.




Ah ha! She’s got a secret! Under that cute little 2+ 2 pleated skirt she’s got a secret weapon: her playground shorts!




Recently S decided that she prefers to wear some sort of shorts under her skirts. I think it’s because she doesn’t need to worry about flashing anyone her underpants at recess or when they sit on the floor in the classroom. She really likes this style of shorts; they’re basically skinny knit shorts like bike shorts that don’t add bulk and can be worn under pretty much anything.


Oliver + S Playtime Leggings as shorts


To make these, I used the Playtime Leggings and cut the legs so she would have a 2 1/2″ inseam when the shorts were hemmed. I didn’t need to do anything else to the pattern, and they sew up ridiculously quickly. Since all her school shorts are navy, I guess she doesn’t need much variation, but she could have them in a wide variety of colors to be worn under every color skirt!

Here’s the Playtime Leggings pattern piece that I altered, so you can see how easy it is:




Simple, right?


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  1. Bronwyn

    Love this! I purchased the pattern earlier this month! Knowing how to do this makes the purchase even sweeter! Thanks for the tip Liesl!

  2. Nancy Axmacher (Mimmy Sews)

    Thanks so much for the pattern. So practical!!

  3. Tamara

    Oh Liesl! You are like our sewing genie! We have been asking for leggings for ages and you just go that one step further! You are amazing!

  4. Juliet

    Excellent? I need some of those!

  5. I’ve been trying to reverse-engineer some twill uniform skirts with attached knit shorts and adjustable waist for their “casual uniform” days, but for under the plaid jumper of dd’s “dress” uniform, these work perfectly. Thanks Liesl!

  6. Penny

    Great idea to do this. Is that a 2.5″ “finished” length? (would then add to length when cutting for the hem??) Thank you

  7. Hi Penny. Yes, as you can see in the last photo, I added the hem in addition to measuring 2.5″ for the inseam. But you can make them as long or short as you like!

  8. Erica

    I’m attempting this customisation for some gymnastics shorts, with smaller inseam of about 1inch. Would it be beneficial to ‘square off’ the pattern at the hem, so when folded up it is closer to the width of the pattern it is folding up to meet, or is this just not necessary because of the stretchy knit material?

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