As you might know, I have a soft spot for vintage Levi’s 501 jeans. Believe me, they’re seriously the best jeans ever made. Short in summer, long in winter - I could wear them all day every day.
It has become tradition that I purchase every summer about two vintage Levi’s shorts at my favorite shop in Amsterdam - a vintage store called Episode at the Waterlooplein. It’s also known as the Levi’s 501 heaven. This year was no different, besides the cool project I had in mind: turning one shorts into my own homemade patched denim shorts.
Patched denim - fashion repeats itself once again. We're going back to the 80s, the decade in which fashion was big, bright and loud. For example, a patched denim jacket would be combined with an oversized shirt, trousers and accessories in all colors of the rainbow, styled off with a big (and I mean really big) hairdo. Ask your mom if you don’t believe me.
So, how to patch your denim like a pro?
1. It’s sensible first to get some inspiration. Make for example a mood board on Interest. In that way, you get an idea of the possibilities and the kind of patches that you like.2. Once you’ve done this, you can go look in (online) shops for iron-on patches. I purchased my patches at LikePatches via Etsy (link) - definitely recommend it! Their supply is very large and not very pricey.
3. Once you’ve made a selection of the patches you want to purchase, you want to make sure that the patches look good together on your denim. In order to check that, you can make a photo of your garment (front and back). Open it in Word/Pages. Save the images of the patches on your computer. Open them in the same document. Now you can play around with the patches and place them in the locations you think are nice.
4. If you're contented with the result, you can order them. If not, ad or lose some patches until you are contented.
5. Once the patches have arrived, all you need to do is iron them on. Grab a piece of paper, an ironing board and an iron. Turn your iron on (the highest heat setting). Place the patch (one at a time) on the desired position, put the piece of paper over it (so you won’t scorch your patch) and apply heat, by firmly pressing the iron onto the paper. Let it cool off. Check if the patch is attached completely. If not, re-apply heat for a few more seconds. Repeat this step until all the patches are attached to your garment.
Easy as that! Now you have your homemade patched denim garment. Enjoy!