Around age three, my kids started coming home from preschool with holes in the knees of their pants. I have not idea how it happens, but almost every single pair of pants that the boys have worn over the last couple years have ended up with at least one, and sometimes two knee tears. And now with Plum still crawling, I’ve got holes in all three kids’ pants! In the past, I’ve just let them be and them cut the pants completely off at the knee to be worn as shorts in the summer, but since summer is still a couple months away, I thought it was time for me to start repairing and reinforcing the knees of some of their pants. I don’t love the look of knee patches, unless they were part of the original design of the pants. So, I am patching from the inside, with easy DIY knee patches.
You’ll need some fabric and thread that pretty closely match the original pant color, unless you want a statement, which could be a fun design element. I also used a gluestick rather than pins to hold the patch in place while stitching, so you may want to grab one of those too.
Read on for a full step-by-step to patch from the inside!
1) Use a pair of sharp snips to carefully open the out seam of the pants along the knee portion. Give yourself several inches to work with, I opened these up at least 8, 12 would make things even easier.
2) Turn the pants inside out and locate the hole or worn area3) If you have an actual hole, line the edges up as well as you can, and lay all of the loose threads into the middle so they’ll be sewn into the patch. Glue a piece of reinforcement fabric over the whole area, almost from seam to seam and at least 1/2″ above and below the hole or worn area. The idea is that this patch with be sewn to both the strong and weak areas of the existing pant, and be the new strength to prevent additional wear.4) With the pants still inside out, flip the patch side down, and lower the presser food onto the right side of the pant knee area. Adjust your machine to a wide zig-zag stitch, and make sure that the only fabric beneath the presser foot is the patch area. 5)Keeping the knee area flat, stitch with a zig zag forward and backward along the patch area. Take care to stitch high above and below as well as side to side of the existing hole or worn area. This will bind the stronger fabric to the patch as well as the weaker.6) When the patch area is well sewn, turn the pants over, still inside out, and stitch a straight stitch along the out seam to close it. 7) Turn the pants right side out and admire your reinforced and patched knees. Then get excited for summer when you can cut them off again!