What do you do with a pair of jeans that has a rather large hole? Refashioning or repurposing springs immediately to mind - salvage the unholy parts, and make them into something else. But that's not the only option. No matter how big the hole, it is possible to prolong the life of jeans by repairing them.
I recently discovered a rather large hole in a pair of my gardening jeans. Who knows how long I had been walking around with them like this! I wasn't prepared to relegate any of my everyday jeans to be worn in the garden, so fixing the hole was my only option.
As they're only worn in the garden, I wasn't too fussed about what the end result would look like. All I needed was the hole fixed up. There are several ways to repair jeans, but I chose to darn this pair by hand. Here's how I did it.
- Cut a scrap of sturdy fabric, larger than the hole. I used denim from a pair of jeans I'd previously cut into.
- Turn the jeans inside out.
- Pin the scrap of fabric to the inside of the jeans.
- Turn jeans right side out.
- Tack (baste) the scrap of fabric in place. Use large hand stitches.
- Remove pins.
- Choose a large, strong needle. Miss Sews-it-all has an informative post on needles for hand sewing.
- Thread needle with strong, double thread.
- Cut off any excess fraying. You could cut off the long, loose threads, but I chose to leave them.
- Choose whether to sew the long or the short side first. I chose the long side, but looking at the photo now, I'm wondering if the short side might have been a better option.
- Sew lines of stitching in the direction you chose, going up and down the length of the hole.
- Change directions and sew lines across and back.
Make the stitching as small as possible. The thick fabric and the largish needle will limit the size of the stitches.
Go up and down, and across and back, as many times as is required to both darn the hole and to get the look you are after.
- Turn jeans inside out.
- Trim excess fabric around the darning.
As these are gardening jeans, stained with dirt and paint, I didn't worry too much about the finished look. They're functional again and that's all I care about.
However, while writing this post, I started thinking about whether I'd wear darned jeans as good jeans.
There was a stage when ripped jeans became fashionable. Is this still the case? People were paying big money to wear designer jeans that came with ready made rips and tears.
If jeans with 4" rips are trendy, perhaps I would be able to get away with darned jeans. I'd have to put more thought into the colour of the patch as well as the thread colour, however.
As I mentioned earlier in the post, there's more than one way to mend holes in jeans. Here's a few links you may find helpful...
- DIY Sashiko Denim Repair (Boro)
- Fixing Jeans with Sashiko
- Mend Holes in Jeans 3 Ways
- Mending Jeans
- Knee Patches Tutorial
- Holy Jeans
- 3 Ways to Mend Holes in Jeans
- Mend Your Jeans
What do you do with your jeans once they've seen better days?
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