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Frayed jeans are everywhere. Unlike how they were when I was 15 (ugly cut up backs of pants, anyone?), frayed jeans are way more chic today. Whether it’s the high-low hem, slightly flared, straight-leg, or skinny, they all hit at the ankle, thus making you look fashion forward instead of grungy and in a desperate need for a shopping trip.
We all know by now that, if I don’t to, I won’t spend a lot of money on something. So, after Pinterest got me into this frayed hem look, I decided to just DIY. Instead of spending $90+ on yet another pair of jeans, I made my own. I bought these bad boys from Costco on a whim for only $20 (okay, I guess I did buy yet another pair of jeans – but not specifically for this purpose, I swear!). And, like it happens with every pair of my jeans, they were waaaaay too long on me. It felt like a win win.
Better length of pants + new style = happy project. Not into DIY’s, but love the look? Try these three super cute designs.
Click on the photo for easy shopping!
Step 1: Gather your Supplies
You’ll need: fabric scissors, pins, your jeans, and sandpaper (optional).
Step 2: Try on your Jeans
Put your jeans on and decide what length you’ll prefer. Some like it a little higher, while others like it grazing the ankle. Just remember not to go too high – unless you’re making capris.
Step 3: Pin it
Pin where you’ll cut for your desired length. If you’re going for the high-low look, the back of your pants should hit the lowest desired length. So, if you’re the ankle-grazing type, make the back of the pants (the longest part) hit the ankles and cut the front 2 cm higher.
The high-low only really looks good on skinnier types of jeans and not a flared jean. I had bought a straight legged jean with what seemed to be a very slight flare so I stuck with the same length.
Step 4: Cut in
Cut where you’ve marked, taking care to cut in a straight line. No worries if you slide a little off track – because you’ll be distressing the bottoms, it won’t be as noticeable.
If you’re going the high-low, cut along the seam to the highest point. Then across (which would be the front of the jeans) and down, again, leaving the full back part of the jean in tact. Then, cut the 2 cm below your new hem.
Step 5: Try on One. More. Time.
Just to make sure that they are short enough for you and look even. You can easily take off a slight amount if visibly uneven. Just make sure you take into account any taken off the front for the high-low look.
Step 6: Fray!
Rub your jeans together to create the distressed look, and pull out any threads you can get your hands on.
For a slightly more distressed look (what I was going for and in the final picture), grab a piece of sandpaper and gently rub the bottom, pulling out threads and leaving to hang as you go.
That’s it. You’re ready to wear your new jeans and dive into the new trend without spending tons of $$$. I didn’t think I’d like these jeans as much as I do, now. I wear them with everything in the spring and summer months for a fresh take on the old jean.
Michelle is an avid traveler, a great ranter, a lover of all things nature and beautiful. You can find her out of the city limits taking in everything that Earth has to offer. When she’s not dressed down in yoga pants and a t-shirt, you can find her piecing together the perfect outfit to show off in the busy streets with friends – careful to state that she is not a hipster. Her favourite city is Paris, with a yearning for its breathtaking streets, architecture, and fashion so strong that she repeatedly finds herself walking along the cobbled lanes and sitting down in the Tuileries with a cafe au lait, scribbling furiously in a Christian Lacroix notebook.
View all posts by Michelle Lee-Ann