Distressed jeans have always been in fashion, however recently I have seen the 'ripped-at-the-knee' jean trend everywhere! It is the perfect transition piece for the cooler autumn months which creates an effortless look with a grungy edge. I had an old pair of black jeans lying around that I got from Big W for around $15 so I thought I would have a go at distressing them myself. I am really happy with the end results and I think everyone should give this a go if you have a pair of jeans that you never wear or even if you go to an op shop and pick up some really cheap jeans, you can diy them and achieve the exact same results as ripped jeans bought in store for a fraction of the price! This is a fun little project that literally takes 5 minutes to do and is sooo easy, so what are you waiting for?
Firstly you will need to try on your jeans and using the chalk mark out where you want the rips to go. I used a light coloured chalk because it is really easy to see on the black denim, draws on well and can easily wash out if you make a mistake. However if you don't have any chalk handy you could use a fabric pencil or marker. Where you choose to make the rips is completely up to you, but I found making my rips mid-knee worked really well to achieve the ripped knee look.
Next take off your jeans, and if you used chalk be careful when removing them so you don't smudge your marks. Then pinch up the fabric where you want to make your rips making sure that the front and back sides of the jeans are separate so you don't end up cutting a hole on both sides of the jeans. Make a small snip where you have made the mark. I used scissors that were slightly blunt rather than sharp scissors to avoid a super clean and perfectly straight cut.
Once you have made the first incision you can slide your scissors in the hole to follow the mark you made. My rips ended about 1.5-2 cms from the side seams.
In order to distress the rips you have just made, pull and tug at the loose threads around the edges of the rips. You can also use the scissors to make tiny snips around the edges or use the small bumpy side of a grater and grate around the rips to further distress the jeans or if you find that your cuts ended up too clean. However I found just using my fingers worked fine.
Next I put the jeans back on and bent my knees to rip the slits even more, over time the rips may open up more and become more distressed, but it's all good as a little wear and tear is all a part of the look! Finally put them through the washing machine to get rid of any chalk marks that might still be on the jeans and this also helps to fray the rips even more.