Don't be scared! Distressing your jeans is wayyyyyy easier than you think! I adapted this DIY from a tutorial I watched on freepeople.com over a year ago. I had to adjust a few things because they had a lot of hardware that I definitely did NOT have.
So here we go!
What you'll need:
1. Old jeans (this works best with denim that does NOT have stretch, it'll work with stretch jeans but sometimes it doesn't come out looking as naturally worn.)
2. Straight razor
3. Sand paper (I subbed this for a nail file...works perfectly!)
4. Card stock
To figure out where the middle of your knee would be (where jeans get naturally worn in) take the bottom of your denim and fold it until it meets the crotch area (sorry there is no better way to say that, believe me I tried...)
Make a small mark with your chalk at the fold.
Make another small mark on the opposite seam.
Draw a dotted line to connect your marks so you know where you will cut.
Repeat on the opposite leg.
Slide your card stock down the pant leg so it's in between the front and back fabric. This is so you won't cut through to the back of the jeans.
Now the fun part!
VERY CAREFULLY! Start right in front of the seam and cut a straight line stopping right before the seam on the opposite side. This will be your longest cut.
Oh hey there card stock!
Add additional cuts, moving away from the first cut on the top and the bottom, making the next cut slightly smaller than the previous. You can stagger your cuts, do half a cut on one, whatever you choose. Try not to make it look too uniform because it will look unnatural.
You'll end with your cuts making an oval shape (you know...kind of like your knee.)
With your nail file (or sand paper) add fraying to the cuts.
Now, we're going to add some distressing other places. Just having ripped knees is fine if that's what you want, but to get a more worn-over-time look add distressing to places that would actually have been worn in.
First, front pockets.
Pop back in that card stock and make some small cuts around the seam of the pocket. Where your hand would go and wear it out over time.
Go at it with the nail file just like the knee rips.
Do the same on the other pocket, maybe add a little distress to the coin pocket too.
Next, back pockets.
Seriously, don't forget the card stock.
Add cuts at the top seams (just like the front pockets) and maybe one or two at the bottom.
Last, down at the ankle seams where the fabric may have been rubbing on your shoes.
So now we've made all our desired cuts and frays!
Next thing, throw those puppies in the washer and dryer! This will bring out even more of the frays and if you aren't working with black denim like I am, some of the little white fibers as well.
Drum roll please...
Let us know if you try out any of our DIYs! Just snap a pic and tag us on Instagram @wedressalright
// Porter //