DIY Distressed Jeans How-to
My style of dressing is mostly laid back. I like being comfortable, and I don’t like to think about my outfit too hard, or too seriously, but I like to have some fun with it as well. I like denim. I wear a lot of denim shorts, convert old jeans to cutoffs, and don a pair of distressed jeans from time to time.
When I look at jeans at the stores, I often check out the distressed denims, and I’ve bought some that were treated to give them a lived-in feel, with a few slightly frayed spots here and there. I refuse to buy ones at the mall that are, like, super ripped and frayed though. The prices seem ridiculous to me. Maybe because I’m a DIY girl and can do that to my own jeans at home. It’s not an exact science and it can be a pretty fun activity, so if you wanna put some rips, holes, etc to one of your jeans, here’s a DIY distressed jeans how-to.
Read on for the steps!
The first step is to think of how you want the denim to look like. If you don’t know, look up some photos online. Do you wanna simple rips on the knees? Give it spots of acid washed color? A hole on the back? Whatever it may be, determine what you want the finished product to be. If you found inspirational photos on the internet, save that photo and use it as a sort of guide.
The next thing to do is gather materials. For making slashes, rips, and holes, you can use a sharp, large cutter,the type used for craft projects. You can also use a steak knife. For unraveling the threads in the denim, you can use a thread picker/seam ripper, or if you don’t have that, a needle or pin. Get a chopping board from your kitchen to lay the denim on while cutting it. And bleach from the laundry area if you plan to discolor or give a faint acid washed-effect to some areas. Lastly, if you want to give certain areas a more worn, faded look, get some sheets of sandpaper.
Before doing any cutting, put on the jeans, and using a marker or drawing chalk,mark the areas where you’d like to place the holes or other distressed effects. Then do the following steps:
1. Place the jeans on the chopping board, and lightly make horizontal slashes on the areas you’ve marked. Remember not too press the cutter down too hard to to avoid cutting the other side, and if you’re making slashes near or on the thigh part, move the pockets out of the way so you don’t cut them.
2. There should be some little white threads hanging out of those slashes. Pull on them to start loosening them.Then use a seam ripper to pick at the holes you’ve cut. If you want the horizontal white threads hanging frayed at the holes you’ve made, just let the white threads be. If you want more bared holes without much of the white thread hanging, pull them out.
3. For additional distressed effects, you can rub some areas down with sandpaper to wear out the denim in those spots, making the denim look paler and more worn-in on those areas. If you plan to give your denims an acid-washed spin, place them in a pail of water diluted with bleach and leave them there overnight.
4. Put the jeans in the washing machine. This helps makes the rips and frays look more natural. If you’ve bleached them, of course you’ll also need to do put them in the wash after letting it soak overnight.
And voila, you’ve got your DIY distressed jeans. If you’re doing this for the first time, best start with an old pair to see how it goes. I also like doing this process when turning my jeans into cutoffs to give them an even more distressed look.
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