I love cycling, but I hate sewing. And since my favorite shorts seem to have been born with a hole in the crotch (seriously, who sews their cycling bib shorts together through the crotch? And why?), I’ve had to take up needle and thread in order to salvage them for another season. Luckily for you, this method works on just about any pair of lycra cycling shorts—and if you follow these steps carefully, your fix will be perfect too! I am happy to explain you how to sew a hole in your lycra cycling shorts.
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Step-by-step guide how to sew a hole in your lycra cycling shorts
Get your lycra shorts and turn them inside out.
Get your lycra cycling shorts and turn them inside out. Make sure they are clean and dry, as you don’t want to sew with a sweaty garment.
Mark the dimensions of the hole on some paper.
You need to cut a patch that is slightly smaller than the hole so that it fits snugly. You should be able to trace the pattern onto paper.
Mark the dimensions of the hole on some paper (with a ruler, if possible). Mark where you would like your patch to go, then draw a line around the hole, marking where to cut.
Cut a larger piece of paper and draw around the marked paper.
- Cut a larger piece of paper and draw around the marked paper.
- Make sure to cut out the hole.
It’s important that you make your patch slightly larger than the hole. This way it covers any gaps and makes for a better repair job.
Cut out your pattern and pin it in place.
First, cut out your pattern and pin it in place. Make sure to:
- line up the seams of your pattern properly. This way you can cut out all of the same fabric at once;
- make sure you have enough fabric to make a patch (you’ll need more than just a square);
- give yourself an extra inch or so around the edges of your pattern because mistakes happen!
Stitch around the edge, leaving about an inch and a half to turn your work inside out
Next, stitch around the edge of your patch, leaving about an inch and a half gap on one side. You’ll need this opening so that you can turn your work inside out. The gap should be big enough to fit your finger through it when you’re done stitching, but not large enough for anything else to get through (that would defeat the purpose!). Use either a straight stitch or zigzag stitch for this step; I prefer using a zigzag stitch because it’s faster.
Once all four sides have been sewn closed except for the one inch-and-a-half hole at one end (which will become our opening), flip over your shorts so that they’re right side up again. Then push some stuffing into each side of them until they are nice and puffy! If you don’t want stuffing in there then feel free to skip this step altogether. Just make sure that whatever material you use, it has nothing sharp sticking out from anywhere before putting on those lycra cycling shorts again!
Turn the patch right side out through the hole you left.
Now that you’ve turned your patch right side out through the hole in your shorts, it’s time to sew it on. You can use a sewing machine for this step if you’re feeling ambitious. Or simply hand-sew it with a needle and thread.
Poke holes into the Lycra on either side of where you want to sew. Use a small seam ripper or nail clippers if they’re available. Otherwise, make do with whatever sharp object is handy (a knife should work). Thread your needle with strong thread—it’ll need to withstand some friction with cycling shorts! Sew through both layers of fabric at once. First pass through one side of the Lycra where it meets flesh. Then back through another part of flesh again before completing each stitch by pulling all ends together firmly but not too tightly.
Press your patch flat, making sure to fold in that inch and a half opening.
Now, let’s get to the actual sewing. After you’ve pressed your patch flat and folded in that inch-and-a-half opening (if you haven’t already), it’s time to stitch your patch on.
To start off: place your shorts on a flat surface with the right side facing up. Line up the edge of your patch along one side seam of your shorts so that it goes from bottom hem all the way up to about two inches above where you want it to end (you can always trim excess later). Then, pin through both layers of fabric at each corner—make sure that there is plenty of fabric overlapping so that when you begin sewing, all four corners will be held together tightly by their stitching lines.
Now sew along those pinned lines using a straight stitch length between 1mm and 2mm; for thicker fabrics such as lycra cycling shorts or neoprene wetsuits, go ahead and use something like a 3mm needle instead if needed!
Baste (hand stitch) the edges of the hole back together by hand.
Hand basting is a great way to hold things together temporarily while you are sewing. It can be done using a needle and thread or by hand with a small stitch. Hand basting can be done by hand or machine, but we recommend the latter if you’ve never done it before, as it’s easier to control.
Turn your shorts right side out and position the patch over the hole so that it is lined up properly.
Turn your shorts right-side out and position the patch over the hole so that it is lined up properly.
Pin all layers of the shorts together along the edges of your patch to hold it in place when you sew it on.
- Pin all layers of the shorts together along the edges of your patch to hold it in place when you sew it on.
- Pinning will also help you keep track of where you are sewing, and may be necessary if there are very few layers between the patch and your skin (i.e., not much lycra). You may need to remove pins as you sew, but try to keep them in place for as long as possible so that they don’t get caught in your machine’s gears or pull out while stitching.
Remove pins as you sew along each edge of the patch
Now that you have your patch in place, remove the pins as you sew along each edge of the patch. As you go over each seam, make sure to go over each seam at least three times to make sure it’s strong enough.
Sewing lycra can be tricky
Sewing lycra can be tricky. But with good tools and a little patience, you can fix your favorite cycling shorts at home.
First thing’s first: You’ll need a good sewing machine that holds its tension well. When I was learning how to sew as a kid (before I got my first sewing machine), my mother would use an old-school Singer that had been passed down from her mother. It wasn’t very user-friendly; there were no settings for stitch length or width — it just did what it did. There was one trick we learned about this kind of machine that made us fall in love with it. If we wanted our stitches to be tighter together, we would pull the thread harder as it came out of the needle and guide it back into place through the eye of the needle rather than letting go entirely, which would give us a looser stitch than desired. You should try this out when sewing with Lycra or other stretchy fabrics. Otherwise, you may find yourself tearing holes in your fabric instead of fixing them!
Next up: thread strength! The thread needs to be strong enough so that when holding your fabric tight while sewing around small areas like hems and seams without ripping apart at any point during pressing down on either side while making sure everything stays aligned properly throughout every step before starting another loop around evenly spaced points along another row – without ever breaking off mid-stitch while trying again later when time allows
Conclusion sew a hole in your lycra cycling shorts
Hopefully, this article has given you some ideas on how to fix your ripped cycling shorts. If you are still not sure how to get started or have more questions about the process. Feel free to email me. I would love to help you out to sew that hole in your lycra cycling shorts!