The Best Summer Accessory Your Family Can Make Themselves – Sit-Upons

Posted on: July 19th, 2012 by



Years ago, before my boys came along, I was a Girl Scout leader. I loved it and one of the best projects we ever made was sit-upons. We took them to campfires, campouts, to almost all of our adventures. So this summer, when my boys started their own summer adventures, I thought what better project than this to kick off our summer. I love that my boys can express their creativity through their decorating. They burn off some energy tearing up newspaper and stuffing the sit-upons. It’s just an all around great project and summer accessory. Enjoy our steps for making a sit-upon below.


What You Will Need to Make a Sit-Upon

  • Shorts/Cut offs (1 for each sit-upon)
  • Sewing Machine Needles for denim if you are using that. (Buy extras, my machine broke a few going through the waistband)
  • Fabric markers/paints
  • Needle for hand sewing
  • Thread for machine and hand sewing
  • Stuffing (Newspaper, mismatched socks, old underwear)
  • Rope/yarn for straps (optional)


How to Make a Sit-Upon

  1. Choose a pair of shorts or turn pants into cut offs. Jeans work better because they can absorb more moisture and take more wear and tear.
  2. Decorate the shorts with fabric markers and paints.

    Decorating his sit-upon. |Photo Credit Jersey Family Fun

  3. Turn the shorts inside out and sew across the waistband. Then, sew one pant leg closed across the bottom.
  4. Leave the other leg open for stuffing the sit-upon.
  5. Turn the shorts right side out and stuff with newspaper. Padding will eventually flatten out so feel free to overstuff.
  6. Hand sew the last leg closed sealing in the newspaper.


That’s it! Now your kids have a great cushion for campfires, concerts in the park, and other summer fun.


Other Ideas for Your Sit-Upon

  • Use a fancy rope or create your own to make shoulder straps for carrying your sit-upon. Just feed the strap through the belt loops. In our case, I braided yarn to create a rope. I fed the rope through twice. The sit-upon will hang low or high depending on how your child puts his/her arms through the rope.

I braided yarn to create rope shoulder straps. It’s doubled up to create longer or shorter straps. |Photo Credit Jersey Family Fun


  • If the zipper-fly is large enough for you to get your hands through you can change the stuffing as needed through that opening.
  • Kids can use the pockets to carry items.


How do you like the ones my boys made?


My boys sit-upons :-) |Photo Credit Jersey Family Fun


We’d love to see ones we inspire you to make.  Tell us about them below or share pictures with us on our Facebook wall.

Posted in: All, Arts & Crafts, Fun at Home, Outdoor Activities in New Jersey

Jennifer Auer is the hyperlocal mom blogger who runs Jersey Family Fun. From New Jersey, this mom of 3 boys just can’t sit still! Her husband likes to say she’s a work-at-home mom who never stays home. Jennifer started traveling as a child and hasn’t stopped since. Instead of letting her husband and boys slow her down, she brings them along! Did you know that boys behave better when they are out exploring? As her boys transition from tweens to teens there’s still so many places she wants to discover with them both across the U.S. and internationally. She has been a Jersey Girl for 20+ years, and a Jersey Mom for 8+ years and a New Jersey mom blogger for 10 years, although she'd much rather be referred to as an influencer or just by name. She has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a focus on Entrepreneurship from Bryant University in Rhode Island.

2 thoughts on “The Best Summer Accessory Your Family Can Make Themselves – Sit-Upons

  1. Nancy Vecchione says:

    I laughed when I saw this, then I realized that situpons vary from troop to troop! Or maybe state to state since I lived in NJ when I was a scout.

    Ours were woven strips of folded newspaper about 2.5 inches across, woven almost like those pot holder loops were. Then we covered it with some oilcloth and whipstitched the edges. Perfectly waterproof! Light weight. But yours has the added advantage of having a way to carry it.

  2. Mychal B says:

    I made sit-upons as a Girl Scout but they never looks that cool. We made them out of plastic tablecloths (the heavy kind with the fabric backing) and they were boring rectangles. Yours are MUCH more fun.

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