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How to make yarn from your old jeans

Learn how to turn your old jeans into Yarn

Facts & handy tips

In this video we will show you how to turn your old jeans into a continuous strand of chunky denim yarn to knit or crochet with!

Want to make more denim projects? Check out our upcycled yarn, Billie Jean, made from upcycled pre-consumer denim waste.

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Step By Step

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This how-to will show you how to take an old pair of jeans and turn them into a continuos strand of denim yarn! All you need is an old pair of jeans and a pair of sharp scissors. Let's get started!

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Grab your old pair of jeans and lay them out. To start, we are going to cut straight across the jean leg, just below the back pocket. Do the same for both sides. The top part of the jeans where the waist is will not be used for this how-to.

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To begin with, go to the bottom of your jean leg where the hem is, and cut the hem off, as it is too bulky to knit or crochet with!

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To maximise the yarn that you can get out of your jean legs, you are going to cut lengths that are 90 degrees to the length of the jean leg. But you do not cut right across! Stop approximately 2 fingers width from the inside leg seam. You can cut the strips to whatever width you want! Here, we have cut them between 1-1.5cm. The strips can be cut by eye, as it doesn't have to be very accurate.

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Keep repeating this cut along the leg! Here is an image of this stage completed. Here you can see that it looks like a fun fringed piece!

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We will now show you how you make these fringes into a continuos length of yarn. Pick up one end of the trouser leg. You can see that you have lots of loops. Start on the first loop.

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Cut one end of the loop so that it turns the loop into a length of denim yarn. The image on the left illustrates this.

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Here is the start of the continuos denim yarn.

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Turn your trouser leg around so that the the new tail that you created is closest to you. Here you can see the cuts you have made on each side, and the part in the middle that is uncut!

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What you will do now is make a series of diagonal cuts that will join the strips together, turning the fringes into continuos yarn. The image to the left illustrates the first diagonal cut.

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Here is how it looks when the first strip has been cut fully. And by magic, you have a continuos strand! Repeat this diagonal cut all the way along the jean leg.

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Once you are done, you can roll it up into a lovely ball to stop it getting knotted! Now it's time to get crafty! Have fun with your DIY ball of denim yarn!

This is how you do it

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