So you’ve got a gorgeous new pair of cut-off shorts (or maybe you hacked them off yourself, or used our expert denim cut-off service) but they’re just not quite distressed enough for you? There are several easy ways you can make your brand new shorts look extremely well-worn, from physical abuse to bleach and beyond. Check out a few of our favorites below.
1. Sandpaper, scissors & razors. Tools like scissors, X-Acto knives, sandpaper, cheese graters, and other potentially abrasive objects are amazing tools for making your jeans look vintage. When using these items, be sure to slip a piece of cardboard or a protective layer inside the pocket and the actual jean, so you are only distressing one surface as a time.
Distress where it’s natural! You’ll see natural wear and tear in places like pocket tops, hems, and anywhere whiskers form (usually around the crotch and the top of the thigh). We recommend starting out by cutting some light slashes, and then sanding and tearing at the fibers surrounding the cut/hem/etc.
How far you go with this is entirely up to you.
2. Bleach & dye.
Another great way to achieve a vintage look is to include a few inconspicuous splatters of bleach, or use a desaturated dye in colors like peach, brown, or even pale yellow. You can check out our bleaching tutorial here. Fabric dye instructions range from product to product, but you’ll get better results if the fibers are 100% cotton.
3. Let the elements do the work.
This is probably one of our favorites. It takes time and patience, and also willingness to accept whatever random things may happen to your jeans. Tie them to your fire escape, pin them to your roof, hang them out your window, or find some other place where they can be stationary in the elements of nature. Running water, summer storms, intense wind, and even wild animals will all contribute to the worn in look of your denim.
+ Distress jeans that are 100% cotton sans-stretch fibers, or else you risk some major shape change after you’ve made your scissor holes & razor marks.
+ Get creative! Cut a slash in the thigh of your shorts and pull the pocket through, or cut out a design in the back pocket and reinforce with stitching. The possibilities are endless.
+ Safety first! Always use the proper precautions when using power tools, chemical dyes, etc. Read the warnings on all packages and wear goggles/gloves if necessary.
Don’t forget, if you need help making your favorite jeans into perfect cut-offs, you can use our expert denim cut-off service.
—Michelle Christina Larsen
Tags: cut off shorts, denim cut off shorts, Denim Repair, denim shorts, Denim Therapy, destroyed denim, distress denim, distressing denim with sandpaper, how to distress denim, shredded denim, summer denim trends
When you take in your jeans to get hemmed (for instance, via our Denim Therapy expert hemming service!) be sure to bring a pair of shoes with you to wear when getting measured. Before your jeans go under the knife you’ll want to make sure the shoes you measure with are the shoes you’re planning to pair with the jeans (or at the least, a similar heel/lack of heel). This will take the guess work out of figuring out the measurement you’ll be happiest with.
Remember, for all your hemming needs, whether it’s a re-size or a repair, check out Denim Therapy’s expert hemming service.
Tags: Denim Therapy, denim tips, find your hem length, hem your denim, hem your jeans, hemming denim, how to hem jeans, perfect hem length, repair jeans
It’s been a while since we waxed denim-addict on ya, so today we’re brushing up on the best ways to wash and care for your jeans. Whether you spilled a glass of wine, got a regular old grass stain or just caught a whiff of your beloved unique-as-a-snowflake raw denim creation, we’ve got the remedy you need below.
General Spot treatment
For those paranoid of losing any indigo hue while spot treating, a combination of white vinegar and water can be sponged over the stain and left for up to 3 hours. Rinse and let air dry. If your jeans are pre-washed or don’t risk dye-loss, spray some OxiClean on the stain and let it sit overnight. Rinse in the morning, and let air dry.
If someone blew out the birthday candles all over your jeans, you can remove very easily, even if it’s dried and crusty. Lay them over a towel, and put a brown paper bag over the wax stain. Press over the brown paper with your iron and watch as the wax is lifted right out of the fibers and into the paper. Depending on the volume of wax, you may need more brown paper — and it may take a few intervals of pressing, but it’ll come out.
Note: You may find this process oddly satisfying. Don’t be surprised if you purposely spill wax all over your jeans in the future, just for fun.
Stinky raw denim
Repeat after us: When raw denim stinks, you no longer the cool guy in raw jeans. You’re the stinky guy in stinky jeans. To remedy this, you have two basic options. One is to turn them inside-out and hand wash them with a gentle laundry soap of white vinegar/water combo, and hang to dry. Another is to put them in a freezer bag and let them sit in the freezer over night. You’ll have to decide which you prefer, depending on your own personal level of stink.
Turn these babies inside-out, throw them in the washer, and hang them to dry. Bada-bing!
Got questions about caring for your jeans? Shoot us an email at email@example.com
Tags: best way to wash jeans, denim care, how to care for jeans, how to wash jeans, laundering denim, raw denim, raw jeans, remove stains from jeans, remove wax from jeans
We’re a little bitter that we should be thinking about sandals and open-toe shoes at this point, and we’re writing about boots… but mother nature has her own plans. Thus, we’re bringing you a little tip on how to tuck your jeans into boots (especially the non-skinny kind), thank to She Knows.com. Check it out, and be sure to let us know what other denim perils you are facing this week.
“First, you’ll want to find a pair of boots that hit right below your knees or a bit higher. They should also be a little loose on your legs, in order to leave room for your pants to be tucked in.
As far as jeans go, opt for a pair that has some flare. Make sure they’re snug on your thighs and fitted at the knees though. Otherwise, they’ll get all bunched up and baggy when you try to tuck them in, which definitely isn’t a good look.
Last but not least, grab some thin, high socks (or trouser socks) to slide over your pants to hold that fold in place. You’ll see what we mean shortly — don’t fret!” (read the full instructions at She Knows.com)
Tags: denim tips, how to cuff your jeans, how to tuck in your jeans, How To Tuck Your Jeans Into Boots, how to wear denim, how to wear jeans, wearing jeans in the rain
Spring is coming, which means it’s almost ankle-baring season! We can’t stress how important it is to have the perfect cuff at the bottom of your jeans. We even made a denim-cuffing video for you a few years back. But we could all brush up a bit on this warm weather skill, so we’re looking to Madewell to set the record straight.
“There’s an art to this relaxed cuff thing, so we asked our denim team to explain how to get our roll on, so to speak.
1. Start with gently wrinkled denim, which holds its shape better than an ironed-flat pair. (It’s the same idea as unwashed, next-day hair being better at holding a curl.)
2. Depending on how much skin you’d like to show, fold the jeans up once, approximately two inches. Make sure this cuff is a bit larger than your ideal final roll—the extra fabric keeps the look loose, rather than starched and precise (à la Happy Days).
3. For your last and final move, gently roll the jeans another time and—attention, please—lightly tug the cuff downward. This creates an anchor effect so that the jeans hang stylishly straight. Done and done.” (Source)
Tags: cuff your jeans, cuffing denim, how to cuff denim, Madewell, Spring Denim, Spring Jeans, spring style, styling tips
Whether you call it snow day camouflage, winter whites, or the ski bunny uniform: wearing white in the winter is a chic statement for sure. But how to mix things up and add some edge? We love this styling tip: Layer some white deconstructed denim jeans over a pair of pop color or patterned leggings. Aside from keeping you warm, this will add some serious depth to your look.
FRAME Denim Le Color Rip Skinny Jeans + Topshop Dark Floral Velvet Leggings
Of course, if you don’t want holes in your jeans but inconveniently find them there, we can repair them for you.
Tags: deconstructed denim, destroyed denim, patterned leggings, printed leggings, ripped jeans, skinny jeans, wear white in winter, white jeans
Refinery29 has a fantastic outfit guide this morning, detailing a few ways you can look totally chic and not freeze to death. We showed you which jeans to wear, now take it a step further by copying some of these below zero-ready looks!
“We walked inside 20 minutes ago, and we still can’t feel our fingers and toes. Our hot coffees are now iced coffees. There are icicles hanging from our heads where there should be hair. We know you feel us — it’s effin’ COLD out there. Like, can’t-feel-your-face, walk-backwards-to-avoid-the-wind cold…” (Read more)
Image via Refinery29.
Tags: buy jeans online, denim coat, polar vortex, Refinery29, Style Guide, what to wear, winter coat, winter fashion
Need to remove the odor from a pair of jeans so you can rock them at all of your holiday gatherings this year? Yeah, that’s right, we know you’re going to wear your favorite pair to literally every social function you’re invited to. Don’t let the stank ruin your festive swagger! While you’re buzzing about doing last minute holiday tasks,dampen your jeans in water. Then, hang them out on the laundry line and let the fresh air penetrate them. Spritz them a few times with Febreeze, and bring them inside at the end of the day.
Don’t have a laundry line? Put them on a pant hanger (clipped, not folded) and find a trusty non-sappy tree branch to hang them from. Presto. Just be sure to check the weather first!
Tags: denim tip, how to care for jeans, how to wash denim, how to wash jeans, remove odor from denim, remove odor from fabric, remove odor from jeans