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Reinforce Pantyhose Waist

diday | Posted in General Discussion on

Waist elastic can be replaced in a half slip and panties, but has anyone ever tried stitching elastic to the waist of a pair of pantyhose? There is no longer any recovery in the waist of otherwise good pantyhose; they don’t have separate elastic waist, it’s just a foldover self-band. Because of vertical seam on front and back it would be impractical to attempt inserting elastic. Machine stitching elastic to the self-band as with a pair of panties might cut the nylon threads and cause severe runs. On the other hand, at $7-$10 USD a pair this frugal office worker might try it anyway. Any any other suggestions?


  1. sewelegant | | #1

    If you use a stretch or ballpoint needle in the machine it should not tear the nylon.  It separates the yarn so the needle passes through.  Try it, what have you got to lose?

  2. User avater
    JunkQueen | | #2

    When I used to wear panty hose every day and the elastic wore out before the stockings themselves, I just wore a light weight panty girdle over the top of them. It kept them in place and was a lot easier than repairing them for the relatively short life they had left at that point in time. That said, I think the ball point needle suggestion would work just fine.

    P.S. I was/am frugal, also. In fact, as many others before and after me, I used to cut off a stocking leg with a run in it and pair with another of the same ilk. Long skirts also allow you to have runs that don't extend much below the knee that've been repaired with clear nail polish........

  3. Teaf5 | | #3

    So glad that I don't have to wear pantyhose anymore! I learned a lot of thrifty tips in the twenty years I had to wear them--among them was cutting off the ruined single legs of two different pairs and wearing both at once.

    Before wasting any time sewing, check to make sure you still have stretch in the leg sections--there is no good fix for baggy legs!

    The panty part is usually a different knit from the hose, so anything you do at the top is not likely to cause runs; besides, the modern knits--even in the legs-- tend not to run as badly as the old ones did. I've stitched hose in many different ways with regular needles and never caused any runs.

    If you have enough length, you can cut off the original band, fold over the top 1/2" and make a casing for new elastic. You could also fold over the band to make a casing, but it may be uncomfortably bulky.

    Knits do not require hemming or edge finishes, though you may want to use an overcast foot with a wide zigzag to make the cut edge lie flat. Let us know what works--I suspect there are many thrifty folk on this forum.

  4. starzoe | | #4

    Lingerie elastic is available, it is lightweight and is sewn on with two rows of stitching and lies flat. It might be the easiest and neatest way to complete the job.

  5. MaryinColorado | | #5

    Haven't tried this myself, but maybe a flatlock stitch on the serger using a small guage for knits needle and then inserting narrow soft elastic through the stitches?

    I have used the flatlock and then inserted ribbon through it with success. 

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