DIY denim

Bonjour and welcome to my first fashion revolution post this week! If you want a few ideas on how to get involved with Fashion Revolution I posted a blog post a few weeks ago on how to take action on the things that matter, including fash rev. Remember to follow my twitter because I will no doubt be updating you all on everything Fashion Revolution over there.

sustainable fashion requires us to re imagine our relationship to our clothing. We need to be able to leave behind craving for new and more items, and instead invest in fewer high quality pieces that are timeless. That doesn’t mean that our wardrobe’s can’t evolve as our tastes do, but we need to allow this to happen as a process of natural attrition rather than one with the mindset of ‘I need a new top I’m going to go out and buy one’. When garments do wear out or go out of style, we need to look at these as items of use and value, rather than something to be discarded. Obsolete clothing can be recycled into new garments that fit with current tastes. Worn clothing can be cut down for patchwork, or re purposed (maybe an old T-shirt could become a bag or be used as a dishcloth rather than being discarded).

If you didn’t want to give your clothes to a charity shop, sell them on depop or repair them if they need repairing, inventing new ways to give your clothes a second chance in your wardrobe is just as sustainable – and you know where the new garment ends up. Ultimately, a sustainable wardrobe is one that puts garments to good use and then re imagines their working life. Rethinking your clothes is a great way to get hands on and creative with what you wear. I think at any age the idea of reinventing the clothes you already wear is fun, it doesn’t have to cost a lot and you may feel like you’ve got a new piece in your wardrobe.

It’s often true that what you buy in the shops is just a building block for something even better, especially when it comes to denim. You may think that your pair of denim jeans are looking a bit drab yet they can easily be brought back to life with some DIY. It extends the garment’s lifespan and you can create some unique items for your wardrobe. DIY isn’t quite your thing? If those are your thoughts then don’t worry because I have some super easy ways in which you can update your denim

Although this DIY is following the ‘trends’ and may not be necessarily in for the long haul, fraying your denim jeans at the bottom is such a simple way to update your jeans without spending a penny. It is super easy to do as well, just take a pair of scissors and cut the jeans at the bottom without catching the hem. When they are in need of their next wash (you may be a little underwhelmed with the fraying before you do wash them) put them in the washing machine and voila! You have a pair of newly frayed jeans.

Alternatively, if you weren’t brave enough to take scissors to your jeans (perhaps they’re too short and you’ve outgrown them) another way to fray the hem is to turn the hem of your jeans inside out and use the end of a safety pin to slightly pull one of the stitches away from the denim and use a small pair of scissors to snip it. You can then start unravelling the seam from the inside, using the scissors to snip the seams away as you pull them away. If you have an unpicker that will make the job a whole lot easier but if not then don’t worry! Scissors or a safety pin will work just fine.

If you have a sewing machine to hand, why not create your own embroidered patches? I attempted doing free embroidery when I made my denim jacket but the effect is super slick and kewl. You can take off the needle foot on the machine to allow you to sew pretty much in any direction you like, changing the stitch length (I keep the stitch on the basic straight stitch). You may want a template to base your embroidery off of or you can leave it up to where the machine takes you and do it free hand!

Either way the result is something personal to you without spending lots on buying a more expensive pair of jeans that can only be worn with a limited number of outfits. This can be done on
basically any piece of clothing. If you didn’t have a sewing machine and really wanted to embroider then there is nothing stopping you from getting a needle and thread and sewing a few little embroidered motifs on a top or jeans.

Another way in which you can DIY your jeans is dip dying them as I saw on Tolly’s blog; a great idea and something that you won’t be able to find in shops – it doesn’t cost a fortune as well. If you wanted to be more eco-friendly you could opt for dying with natural dyed, when I made a childs fox toy for my textiles project last year I dyed with onions (I needed a lotttt and it stunk the catering room) but the effect was great and if you’re patient enough natural dyes are a fantastic way to dye your clothes.

Do you have any DIY denim ideas or creative ideas to reinvent the clothes you already own? Let me know in the comments as I would love to know! Remember to get involved with Fashion Revolution this week and be a Fashion Revolutionary (I’d love to read any posts you’ve written so link me up)!

Eleanor //  


  1. Eleanor Pritchard 24th April 2017 at 4:17 pm

    Thank you so much! My jeans are from Zara but they're about 2 years old, you may be able to get a pair similar on depop 🙂 xx

  2. Edie 24th April 2017 at 5:02 pm

    Loved this – your writing is beautiful and the jeans turned out so well! I'm so excited to see the rest of your posts <3

    Edie x

  3. Lucy Alice 25th April 2017 at 5:32 pm

    I try my best to not throw any items of clothing away, I usually try to sell them on Depop or just hand them to a charity shop. I also buy loads from charity shops, some of my favourite wardrobe pieces are from there!

    Lucy | Forever September

  4. Cília CC 25th April 2017 at 10:55 pm

    I love to reutilisize the old clothes! Mostly I cut my old jeans to make short pants, and then I decorate it, but I really want to do a nice pair of ripped jeans or embroid them!

  5. Corinne & Kirsty 26th April 2017 at 7:34 pm

    Aww this is such a great idea! I love DIY! You can do so many things and turn a super basic pair of jeans in something unique and amazing! thanks for sharing! xx corinne

  6. BasicallyCharlie 26th April 2017 at 7:35 pm

    Omg I know this isn't the point of the post but those vans! I love them! x

  7. Eleanor Pritchard 27th April 2017 at 7:55 pm

    Thank you so much Edie! I only have like three posts for fashion revolution week, ya know exams and stuff kinda getting in the way x

  8. Eleanor Pritchard 27th April 2017 at 7:55 pm

    Thank you so much! They turned out a lot better than I expected x

  9. Eleanor Pritchard 27th April 2017 at 7:56 pm

    Charity shops are a great place to buy from if you don't have the budget for more expensive ethical brands! x

  10. Eleanor Pritchard 27th April 2017 at 7:57 pm

    I never thought of making shorts from old jeans before but I just might! Thank you for the idea 🙂

  11. Eleanor Pritchard 27th April 2017 at 7:58 pm

    Same here! They are definitely unique and that is what I love about them xx

  12. Eleanor Pritchard 27th April 2017 at 7:58 pm

    haha I love them too! They've finally been worn in so I don't get blisters every time I wear them x

  13. Lokyee 29th April 2017 at 10:36 am

    Ah the jeans look so good I'm gonna try this tomorrow hehe x

  14. Eleanor Pritchard 7th May 2017 at 5:46 am

    Ooh let me know how it goes! Would love to see the outcome 🙂 x


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