What can you make with jeans that are out-of-style, ripped beyond repair or painted? What can you make with the inseams, waistbands and other components even after you use up the flat panels of fabric? In this episode, we’ll explore the ways people have been creatively recycling denim jean fabric for thousands of years, and get project ideas you can make today.
You can listen to my podcast episode on denim jeans recycling in this YouTube video. It originally aired in July 2018.
Where to Donate Jeans
How to Update, Repair and Make Your Own Jeans
How to Shorten Jeans and Keep the Original Hem
Sew Your Own Custom Ginger Jeans with Closet Case Patterns
Trashmagination Projects Made from Recycled Denim Jeans
Upholstered Dining Room Chair
Denim Recycling Projects that I Want to Make
- Beads from rolled denim jean scraps by Harmony Lawrence
- Coil basket from denim jean inseams
- Coil necklace from denim jean inseams inspired by LoveandDream
- Whale toy designed by Finnish artist Valaan Villapaita – combines blue and gray denim
- Lunch or Snack bag which reuses the leg of the jeans with minimal sewing and closes with a belt
- Denim quilts – Check out the Trashmagination Pinterest board for recycled denim jeans to see all the denim quilts I want to make.
Artists Who Make Items from Recycled Denim Jeans
Jean Shin made an installation called Alterations from blue jean legs stiffened with wax She also did a recent installation where she made sandbags from jeans called Levee.
Yarn Made from Recycled Denim Jeans
- BettaKnit Love My Jeans yarn from Italy
- Venne Eco Jeans yarn from the Netherlands
- Wol zo Eerlijk from the Netherlands
- Wool and the Gang from the United Kingdom
Other Resources Mentioned in this Podcast Episode
- My Summer Job Sorting Textiles
- Home Insulation made from recycled denim jeans
- What is Japanese boro?
- Sri Threads – specializes in boro pieces
- Script for this podcast episode about denim jeans recycling (not a transcript but gives the main ideas)
- The Trashmagination podcast theme music is Kitchen from the Marian Circle Drum Brigade.