stretchy pocket maternity pants tutorial

Welcome to belly + baby! This is the first post in our weekly maternity series. I gave you a little preview of these pants last week, and here’s the tutorial! This is a great way to have elastic pants that don’t look like elastic pants. By replacing the front pockets with elastic, you’ll have plenty of stretch for a growing belly, but also enough structure to keep you feeling put-together. 

I love that these pants still have the details like belt loops, a button and a zipper. I don’t like feeling like I’m in my pajamas when I’m out and about. (Maybe that’s just me?) 
These pants only took a few minutes to complete and they are so comfy. Here’s how to make yourself a pair!


*1 pair of regular pants
*1/4 yard knit ribbing

Turn your pants inside out. We’re going to cut the back of the pocket entirely out and replace it with knit.

Wherever you cut, make sure you leave a seam allowance of at least 1/4″  

 *Pay special attention to metal features that might get in your way later. Leave extra seam allowance so you can dodge them with your machine.

 Use your cut out pocket as a template for the new pocket piece you’ll be inserting. My pocket is a hack-job, so even out the edges and add enough around the edges for seam allowance. Cut two rectangles from your ribbing fabric. Make sure the stretch is going horizontally. Sew the two pieces together at the top, turn right side out and press.

 We’re going to match one edge of the ribbing to the edge of the pants, where the pocket used to be.

 Pin it on.

 And sew it up. Your pants will look like this:

 Repeat on the other side.

 Then, sew the bottom edge of the pocket. 

 Repeat on the other side of the pants and you’re done! 

Now you have two new useable and stretchable pockets! 
Check out today’s other belly + baby posts by Jess and Shauna

It’s maternity bottoms day…Shauna at Shwin & Shwin is sharing a full-panel maternity pants tutorial and Jess at Craftiness is not Optional is showing off her DIY maternity skirts! 

belly + baby will be back next Monday!


  1. says

    What a great idea! The only maternity jeans I ever liked were the ones I cut on the side seams and added elastic – I never thought to use the front pockets!

  2. says

    Kate – this is AWESOME!!! Seriously, I am pretty sure this is genius. I am kicking myself for not thinking of something like this when I was pregnant. Keeping cute looking jeans, still having a button closure, I just love it!

  3. says

    I’m pinning this for “later” if pregnant again… and I’m the same way…. what the heck is up with those maternity pants that come up to your ribs… NO WAY!

  4. says

    That is so simple and wonderful. I bet pregnant moms feel so much better being able to wear regular pants instead of the maternity ones that never seem to fit right. Great job!

  5. says

    such a fantastic idea! if i ever happen to find myself pregnant again, i’m TOTALLY doing this. genius!

  6. says

    oh this is so great! I am 9 wks pregnant and I am so excited that I found this post! I will for sure be doing this to my pants. Even after the pregnancy, I can wear them and it won’t matter if I gain a few lbs on vacation or if I eat a big lunch, they’ll fit perfect! Thank you. If you get the chance pass by my sewing and fashion blog. Fashion design student & fashion lover here;)


  7. says

    thank you! I just added these to a pair of old jeans and voila! They fit AND are comfortable. Awesome. (16 wks along)

  8. says

    this is the best idea i’ve ever seen, i think you need to patent it before all the big stores steal your idea!!

  9. says

    Great tutorial. I have been looking for something like this. Has anyone tried to use wide elastic rather than the knit ribbing? If so, were you pleased with the results?

  10. says

    Great tutorial! It is nice that you are sharing about what you did with your own design of your clothes collection most especially with your maternity pants and this was very great and amazing. Thanks for sharing this and keep on posting.

  11. says

    Thank you thank you! I love this tutorial! Have been struggling to find jeans that fit, and don’t want to spend a fortune on something I’ll wear only for 2 months!

  12. says

    such a great idea! i’m expecting my first little one and i’m at the point where my pants just aren’t fitting anymore. i’ve got to try this! :)