My pants are falling down!
May 18, 2013 11:45 AM   Subscribe

You know that loop of string on the front of bathing suits and exercise pants? What am I supposed to do with that?
posted by Slarty Bartfast to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (15 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Tie a reliable shoelace knot.
posted by bearwife at 11:48 AM on May 18, 2013 [1 favorite]

shoelace knot is the way to go, anything else becomes too difficult to untie in the future (especially for bathing suits). just untie it before you wash whatever you're wearing.
posted by numberwang at 11:52 AM on May 18, 2013

Tie a knot of some sort and tuck the loops inside the pants/shorts.
posted by michaelh at 11:59 AM on May 18, 2013

I suspect Slarty's string is a continuous loop drawstring as opposed to two loose string ends. For the continuous loop kind, do a slip knot where the no-slipping end of the knot is against the pants fabric. A slip knot will avoid the dreaded "I've overhand-knotted my sweatpants on so tightly that I can't get them off and I have to pee now" problem.

However, since I'm often too clumsy to manage a good slipknot (and I hate closed loop drawstrings) if there's enough slack, I cut the loop and knot the ends: I've gone so far as to restring favorite yoga pants with longer lengths of drawstring to avoid the closed loop.
posted by jamaro at 12:10 PM on May 18, 2013 [1 favorite]

I had this on a pair of lululemon running tights. I cut the loop after reading reviews saying to do so on their site and tied the ends in knots. This makes it so I can tie the waist as tightly as I need, but the knots do not keep the cord from slipping into the waistband when I pull them on. It's frustrating. I am thinking of putting safety pins on the ends.
posted by annabellee at 1:07 PM on May 18, 2013

I use it to play with cats.

This sometimes ends badly.
posted by maryr at 1:09 PM on May 18, 2013 [9 favorites]

If you use a shoelace style knot, use the first half of a surgeon's knot for the first part. In addition to the one cross over and under, do another one, and then finish the knot like normal. Stays together much better, still easy to undo in a pinch.
posted by gjc at 1:27 PM on May 18, 2013 [3 favorites]

I suspect Slarty's string is a continuous loop drawstring as opposed to two loose string ends.

This is exactly correct. I always assumed you were to leave it in the loop and there was some trick to it, but is it intended to be cut? The problem is the worst when it's a nylon string that doesn't hold a knot well.

I think the slip knot link above is confusing and difficult and doesn't really solve the problem.

I suspect cutting the string is the best solution, but I feel like there must be a smarter way.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 3:55 PM on May 18, 2013

is it intended to be cut?

The goal of the closed loop drawstring is to prevent losing one end of the drawstring down the hole into the pant's waistband. The loop style isn't meant to be cut (they rarely come with enough spare length) but cutting it is often the imperfect solution to the problem.

On hiking pants, closed loop drawstrings are usually threaded through a spring loaded two hole cord lock, but you could use a single hole cord lock to cinch up a closed loop drawstring while still retaining the loop assuming you find a cord lock with a hole big enough to accomodate 2x the diameter of your pant's cord.
posted by jamaro at 4:22 PM on May 18, 2013 [1 favorite]

I was going to suggest jamaro's solution, but in order to do so, I would've had to use askme to figure out what those things are called!
posted by rtha at 4:37 PM on May 18, 2013

If it's nylon, you can always cut it, thread it through the two hole cord lock, and then melt the ends back together with a match or candle. (Pro tip, if it has a sharp, annoying edge after you melt it, file it down with a nail file.)
posted by anaelith at 5:39 PM on May 18, 2013

I remove it if there's already elastic in the waistband, because I have hips to keep my shorts up. YHMV.
posted by The corpse in the library at 5:40 PM on May 18, 2013

Tying a slipknot is really not an complicated task, and it will in fact keep your pants from falling down.
posted by wreckingball at 12:16 AM on May 19, 2013

With closed loop, I pull the loop out as far as it can go, then pull it to the sides with both hands at the same time to divide it into two smaller loops, and tie them in a shoelace knot. Usually works just fine, so long a there is enough slack in the cord.
posted by caution live frogs at 7:32 AM on May 19, 2013

On that one pair of running pants that don't have any pockets I often tie my house key onto the drawstring then tuck it into the waistband.

Otherwise I usually do caution live frogs' method. It does need there to be enough slack in the drawstring to form two tieable loops, though.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 9:16 AM on May 19, 2013

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