Pama T-Shirt Underwear

Does anyone else have an aversion to the word ‘panties’? I just don’t like saying it or typing it. . . hence the word ‘underwear’ being used throughout this post even though I’m really talking about panties. Anyways. . .

I have been wanting to try my hand at making t-shirt underwear for a very long time – ever since I discovered the notion of t-shirt surgery. It seems that every event and every cause uses t-shirt to raise money or to reward your participation. This leads to an overflowing t-shirt drawer and I sometimes have a hard time parting with the shirts. Why not turn them into something else useful, right? This particular t-shirt came from a clothing swap in downtown Austin. What can I say, I really like pomegranate juice. Turns out the t-shirt was a bit too small (note foreshadowing here), so I decided to turn it into underwear. The fabric is very soft, after all.

Here is my first attempt at making undies and using fold over elastic (FOE). The FOE has two sides, a shiny side and a matte side. I decided to use the shiny side since the printing on the t-shirt was silver. Pretty fun. I used the PAMA logo as the front of the underwear. Cute, right?

T-Shirt Underwear

But my favorite part is the tree as the back. Super cute. I used Angry Chicken’s FOE tutorial and I’d say it was pretty easy to use. Much easier than creating casing and threading elastic through. Making skirts would be a dream with this stuff. Not to mention, it’s pretty cheap and comes in a ton of different colors and styles.

T-Shirt Underwear

I didn’t use a pattern, I just traced some underwear that I have that fits me well, and this is what came back and bit me in the butt (ha). The underwear is too small. I mean, I should have figured, the shirt was too small after all. I didn’t account for the fact that t-shirt material doesn’t stretch as much as the underwear I was tracing. So here’s what I’m going to do (hoping this isn’t too weird). The first person to comment telling me that they wear an XS size of underwear can have these! Try not to expect too much when you receive them, as this was my first attempt at making underwear and it is apparent especially in the areas where the FOE overlaps, but they are adorable.

Who’s going to be first? 🙂


  1. Posted April 14, 2010 at 9:29 am | Permalink | Reply

    you are SO talented…the love the underwear and i too hate calling them panties..ha!

    oh, how i wish i was an XS!

  2. Posted April 14, 2010 at 1:23 pm | Permalink | Reply

    me me me me me! oh, wait…

  3. stevie lindsey
    Posted April 14, 2010 at 4:26 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I was so sad when I saw two people had already commented! Me!Me! Sx! Sx! Sx!

    I adore them!

    • Elizabeth
      Posted April 14, 2010 at 9:32 pm | Permalink | Reply

      It’s yours Stevie!

  4. stevie lindsey
    Posted April 14, 2010 at 4:27 pm | Permalink | Reply

    oh my goodness…

    *Xs! Xs! Xs!

  5. Rachael B
    Posted April 14, 2010 at 8:55 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Well, I am not an xs, but I have always been hesitant (though curious) about making my own undies…something about old worn-out fabric??? Like you, I also have an over abundance of tshirts! I swear I got rid of tons just a year ago! I remember that organization you made baby hats out of old tshirts for awhile back…do they still need that sort of thing? I always feel bad just throwing them away. They usually end up in my rag pile, which really is way too big.

    • Elizabeth
      Posted April 14, 2010 at 9:32 pm | Permalink | Reply

      This fabric wasn’t really worn out, per say, the shirt was just too small! Perfectly soft for undies. As far as I know the hats for Haiti thing isn’t going on any more, but there are a lot of other uses for t-shirts. Do a quick search on google for t-shirt surgery, you’ll find a ton of ideas!

  6. Posted April 15, 2010 at 5:04 pm | Permalink | Reply

    these are too cute! i too am not an xs, and congrats to stevie for getting them! 😉 gonna have to try this with my many many shirts that no longer fit [thanks to having 3 babies in the last 4 years. :(] just had to say that i also hate the word panties. makes me cringe!

  7. Posted April 15, 2010 at 10:00 pm | Permalink | Reply

    LOVE those!! they are so cute! i want to try it. i am def not an extra small so i appreciate you explaining that i need to trace ones that are not very stretchy…im gonna try it!! love them, love them, love them!

  8. katie t
    Posted April 15, 2010 at 10:07 pm | Permalink | Reply

    ok, so there’s no possible way i could fit into those, but i’m so glad to hear someone else cannot stand the P word!! i’m not weird!!

    well…not for that reason anyway. :o)

  9. Rosie
    Posted April 16, 2010 at 4:04 am | Permalink | Reply

    I have an aversion to the word panties too. Not used much here, but there is a telly ad on atm moment that has it and it makes my skin crawl. Sorry to say I don’t like the word diaper either, but I know nappy is used differently there to here, but I still prefer it. I used FOE to try and make some nappy covers and failed dismally. I have I think about 100 metres of the stuff, that will probably never get used. Maybe I should try making undies too. Or just give it away to people who will use it to make undies.

    • Elizabeth
      Posted April 16, 2010 at 8:25 am | Permalink | Reply

      Oh certainly try using it again! You could use it for quick skirts as well as underwear! It gets easier the more you use it!

  10. Posted April 20, 2010 at 10:13 am | Permalink | Reply

    I would have never ever thought that anybody would come up with the idea of making their own underwear and actually following through with it. Well, you did it, Congratulations!
    I love the design.

  11. Posted May 13, 2010 at 9:54 pm | Permalink | Reply

    too cool! i used to make my own undies; back before i had a dryer, it was easier to make a new pair than to do the laundry!
    but even then, i never used t-shirts; good thing i just got a ton of them given to me for other things.

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