Denim Repair | 9 and 17 Years of Wear

I have had a few requests over the last few months for repair information and how-to’s. Who better to ask about repairs than Osaka’s own Mr. Narita from Brown Tabby. This post will be an intro to appreciation of repair and reusing old fabric to turn your jeans into something more personal.

Wearing the same pair of jeans for 1 to 3 years is pretty typical nowadays, especially with the current global interest in high quality denim jeans. However consumer behavior doesn’t change all that much even for jeans that cost in excess of 200USD. People like to fade their jeans, but few understand how to repair their own jeans. Over the next week or so, I will be going over how to do just that, simply, and cheaply. No special equipment required.

But first, onto the aesthetic appeal of damage, and repair. Let’s appreciate and respect what we have-

Denim Repairs 1

This first pair is Narita-san’s pair of Warehouse jeans. 9 years of wear and tear. Well-worn and the repairs are impressive. The backside and front-side patching breaks up the indigo and adds more texture to the fade. The puckered patches have their own unique wiskering. The best way of going about repairing jeans at this age is using vintage fabric, to maintain a faded look. This also saves money and wastes less if vintage fabric scraps are used.

Denim Repairs 2

Denim Repairs

This second pair of Warehouse is a masterpiece of 17 years of wear. An unforgettable amount of texture and contrasting colors. If these jeans could talk…

Denim Repairs 3

Even the reverse side is something remarkable. The patching and stitching has so much character, and they are a very true representation of their wearer. Narita-san is an interesting character.
Denim Repairs 4

A stitched-portrait of his daughter on the knee shows his loving side, and also his sense of humor. A mix of machine and hand stitching add so much detail to the fade of the denim.

Denim Repairs 5

The depth and amount of stitching, the variety of vintage fabric used for patches: these jeans are coveted by their owner.  The love and care for these jeans is a reflection of character. It shows his admiration and respect for things, and not to waste. I respect this mindset, we can all learn something from repairing our own clothing and not just tossing or storing it. This is the appeal of boro, having the skills to make something beautiful, unintentionally and naturally.

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