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Hello! I'm Suzannah, a serious DIYer. Follow along with my DIY fixer upper house renovations, sewing and crafty projects, real food recipes, and de-stressing goals. I'm a recovering former vegan and vegetarian, now healing with a nutrient-dense mostly Paleo diet, and love at-home CrossFit and yoga workouts. I'm also the author of DIY Wardrobe Makeovers!

New mom to baby Otto born April 2018!

Feeling very thrifty and crafty: jeans-mending and destroying

I repair jeans. I don't rip them. And yet--I'm feeling very crafty and thrifty with this project that went outside my comfort zone!

This project was close to the cheapest I've ever done, but is so trend-inspired I'm surprised it took me this long to try it.

Now, let me sound like a grandpa for a moment (or like Danny in this Mindy Project episode--"Did you know people are buying jeans with holes already ripped in them?") and say that I am not a big ripped jeans wearer, not because I don't think they look okay on other people, but because a) I do kind of feel like a grandpa and not like buying things that will already make my knees feel cold, and b) I can't wear them to work on Fridays. That's like their one dress code policy--no ripped clothing. And I don't wear jeans in the summer, and wouldn't want holes in my clothes when it's too cold out, so my window for wearing torn jeans is limited to moderate weather weekends.

So, I've never invested in a pair, and since perfecting my essential jeans-mending method a few years back, I've always repaired holes when they pop up. (I modified it here for jeans knees.)

But, I recently came across the perfect pair to try out a DIY distressing method on! I still don't feel right buying ripped jeans, but I might not mind making my own. But this particular pair needed some repair first.

First some ripped jeans inspiration...


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Hm. Note to self. Next time I wear ripped jeans, animal print or pointy toed shoes are a must. ;)

Inspired, but still never buying or wearing ripped jeans


But still a DIYer at heart, I wasn't opposed to distressing my own. So when the opportunity struck, I figured I ought to try it out! I bought these jeans for $0.50 at an estate sale. Weird, right? They were on the table with the rest of the jeans, which were all $1, but when I asked about the massive rip in the crotch, they took the price down to $0.50. (It's shocking how cheap stuff is at estate sales sometimes.)

So I tried the basic jeans-distressing method!
It's funny, when you Google "how to distress jeans" almost all the posts are exactly the same method. Sand, cut two horizontal lines, pick the blue threads between the cuts. Here's a good photo tutorial.

Seems ironic, but here's what I did!

And this pair with the big crotch hole was perfect for my original jeans-mending tutorial. Here it is, with the follow-up!


ESSENTIAL jeans-mending method

Jeans-mending method: holes in knees

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