Every year, I go through the same pattern with jeans: I find a pair in the fall that I’m in love with, wear them practically every day, and by spring, the bottoms are frayed, they’re thinning, or they have a belt loop missing. I hate throwing away jeans. It is physically painful for me to get rid of this semi-expensive pant pattern that I made or that I spent a week-long quest looking for (because who finds a perfect-fitting pair of jeans the first time shopping).
Every year, I go through the same process of upcycling crafting: fabric scraps get turned into quilts or tag-blankets for babies, paper gets modge-podged onto a canvas with watercolors, and I crochet Christmas ornaments. But what about those pants? I’m left with a pile of jeans to feel sad about. Even my nicest jean jacket, that I’ve had for forever, seems to judge me because I haven’t worn it in about three years (the sleeves got too short), but I won’t donate it because it matched with all my outfits (do as I say, not as I do).
Well, there’s no more sadness when you look at your own pile of “unwearable” jeans. You can use these upcycling ideas for jeans to keep using them this summer! There are, of course, the classic jean skirt tutorial on the list, but there are a lot of new and exciting ways to revamp old jeans without breaking the budget. You can get a pair of “bleached” and stressed denim (learn how to stress denim here)without paying an insane amount of money, and without the harsh chemicals that break down the quality of the fabric. A durable dorm room cushion made out of denim will be great for your college student out of their old jeans or the ones that need to be discarded. Whatever you make, it will last long because of the strong material that you’re making it with. I, personally, will be attacking my long-loved-but-yet-to-be-lost jean jacket and making it into a vest.