Insulin Pump Shorts




This is one of my favorite projects so far. I know, I know – I keep promising not all my projects will be pump cases, and they won’t be. This was just an easy project and I’m so happy with how it turned out! These shorts have a cuff with pockets for my pump. I made a pair to wear as pj’s (a little late for 4th of the July, which was my original intent). They’re surprisingly comfortable, and the extra pocket has proven to be SUPER useful for things like a little extra cash/cards/anything small that you need a pocket for.

It also works wonderfully to wear under skirts/dresses. It makes accessing my pump a whole lot less awkward than hitching up my skirt to my hip. Adding lace makes it feel like slightly fancy, and like a slip.

NOTE: This project and others may be viewed on my blog: Diabetic Hacker. Why visit my blog and venture away from the very awesome Instructable website? I offer competitions and giveaways from time to time where you can win your very own personalized project (or win a super awesome gift for somebody you know)!

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Step 1: Materials and Tools

  • 1-2 yards of fabric (Optional: coordinating accent fabric)Honestly, 1 yard of fabric would be solidly sufficient, but I always like to have extra to work with
  • Elastic
  • Snaps or Hook and Loops (Velcro)
  • Freezer Paper or Pattern Paper or Newspaper – really any paper large enough to draw the pattern on

Tools and Equipment

  • Serger (not TOTALLY necessary, but way easier)
  • Sewing Machine
  • Scissors
  • Pins
  • Markers
  • Tool to attach Snaps (if using snaps as as the fasteners)

Step 2: Make Pattern

Make a pattern for front and back as described in this blog: How to Make Custom Tap Pants on the freezer paper (or whatever other paper you may be using to create the pattern) If making the lace trimmed shorts, I recommend shortening the length of your shorts pattern, we will be adding the trim to make it about 2.5 inches to 3 inches longer.

Step 3: Cut Out the Fabric Pieces

Pajama Shorts (Red/Blue shorts)

  • Cut two of each (front and back) out of your fabric.
  • Cut two 7″ x length of the bottom of the front pieces (blue bottom strips).
  • Cut two 7″ x length of the bottom of the back pieces (blue bottom strips).

Lace Shorts (Red/White floral pattern with black lace)

  • Cut two of each (front and back) out of your fabric.
  • Cut four 4″ x length of the bottom of the back pieces.
  • Cut two 4″ x 6″ piecesCut two 4″ x (length of the bottom of the front piece – 5″).
  • Cut 2 pieces of lace the same length as the front pieces, and 2 pieces of lace the same length as the back pieces.

Step 4: Make the Cuffs

Pajama Shorts (Red/Blue shorts)

  • Fold the 7″ strips from step 2 in half lengthwise and press with an iron
  • If you want to add a patch or some sort of embellishment to the pocket, now is the time:I simply traced the pattern on the fabric and zig-zag stitched around the edges – attaching on opposite edges of the front cuffs
  • On the 7″ strips that are the length of the front, measure 6″ in from the edge (opposite edge on each strip) and cut to the pressed crease

  • Serge the edge that will open to form the pocket, zig-zag stitch the edge of the cut to the bottom

Lace Shorts (Red/white floral with black lace)

  • Serge one of the 4″ edges of the 4″ x 6″ pieces, and then serge the other 4″ x 6″ piece’s opposite 4″ edge

Step 5: Add Snaps (or Whatever Fastener)

Add Snaps (or hooks and loops) to serged edge and the corresponding locations on the piece below it.

Step 6: Assemble Cuffs and Pieces

PJ Shorts (red/blue)

  • Serge/Stitch the cuffs (that are folded in half) to their corresponding front/back pieces

Lace Shorts (red/white floral with black lace)

  • Sandwich the long cuff of the front piece, lace, and the 6″ and shorter strip together and serge
  • Press open. Zig-zag the piece opposite the snaps to the base
  • Serge/Stitch the cuffs (that are folded in half) to their corresponding front/back pieces

Step 7: Assemble Shorts

  • Serge/Stitch the short edges of the fronts to the short edges of the backs (you should now have two pieces)
  • Line up the two pieces, so that there is a large “U” and serge/stitch the U
  • Serge/Stitch the outer edges. You should now have most of your shorts done!

Step 8: Add Elastic

  • Make the elastic band. The original blog suggests using fold-over elastic. I used the cheap, wide elastic strips and I feel it turned out well. Size the elastic around your waist (or where you want it to sit) by wrapping the elastic around yourself and cutting it out with about 1.5″ overlap.
  • Stitch the overlapped pieces to each other. You should now have an elastic ring.
  • Center the overlapped section of the band with the seam connecting the two front sections and pin.
  • Zig-zag stitch the elastic band to the shorts. Pull the elastic as you stitch so that it matches the shorts. I went around the circumference twice for security.

Step 9: Enjoy!

You’re done! Enjoy!

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    9 Discussions


    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    It is super sticky and you replace it every three days. I work our with mine, shower and swim occasionally. Occasionally it gets a little loose around the edges but I have yet to have one fall off. Super easy to load, draw up insulin in a large capacity syringe, "inject" into the pod, then synchronize with the pdm control. Takes all of two or three minutes to put a new pod on.
    I was a three year vet of wearing the minimed pumps and have been on omnipods for almost four years now. It would take some major awesome advances on minimed's part to ever get me to switch back. The best benefit I found to switching was no stupid canulla tube to get snagged on door knobs and drawer pulls and yank out your insert. Which was a frequent occurrence for me.


    Reply 4 years ago

    Agreed. Only notable drawbacks to the omnipod I can think of: you can't take it hot tubbing (temp has to stay around body temp), and you have to lug around a kit, which I think most diabetics are used to doing pre-pump any way.


    Reply 4 years ago

    I have to say from personal experience that for me (and many people) that the omnipod is better than that system. But for some it might not be. The main thing for me is it's tubeless. Hate dem tubes.

    Honestly, I mostly do what my insurance will allow - which was a huge battle just to get my pump. I'm not complaining though, could certainly be worse!

    diy tech

    4 years ago

    nicely done. great instructable. keep them coming

    1 reply

    4 years ago

    very nice. I used to have that pump system. Some custom clothes like that would have made it way better. But now I have the OmniPod.