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Molly Longest / Her Campus

Why You Shouldn’t Toss Your Denim

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at GWU chapter.

It’s easy to get tired of your clothing. It’s easy to just throw it away and never think about it again. What’s not so easy is the time it takes for this material to leave the environment. With all of the waste our earth is gradually accumulating, it’s important to try and limit the amount you contribute. This can all begin with the choice to be sustainable with your fashion; something as little as keeping that pair of old jeans and turning it into something new and inventive.


I can almost guarantee that most people have a pair of jeans sitting in the back of their closet that haven’t been touched in months. You may think they’re too boring to wear with all of the new exciting trends being introduced daily, or maybe you just simply forgot about them. If you’re feeling inspired, I encourage you to take that pair of jeans out of your closet and give them a makeover. From painting or patchwork to bleaching or dying, you can turn a pair of jeans into the newest statement piece in your wardrobe. Not only does it reflect positively on our environment, but it also gives you a chance to experiment with your artistic side.


Here are some methods of turning your denim into your newest favorite piece…


If you have some paints lying around your dorm/house, adding your favorite designs, colors, or patterns onto your jeans can make it all the more exciting. Nothing has to be perfect or intricate; it can be as simple as this striped pattern or a little pop of color.

Bleach/Splatter Paint

Bleaching your denim is an easy way of adding something new. You can splatter it or paint it gently to give it a fun, creative effect.


Writing on denim is a fun way of showing some of yourself in your clothing. You can write your thoughts, feelings, or specific words that mean something to you. You can even write the first words that pop into your head. It can be neat, messy, simple, or extravagant. No matter what, it gives a new and interesting look to your denim.

Tye Dye

I’m sure most people tye-dyed when they were little. It was a fun and easy way to be creative with your clothing. Nowadays, this has become a trend that many people can enjoy. Adding it to your denim will give it a vibrant and exciting look.


Adding patchwork to denim is a simple, but always a creative way of spicing up your jeans. You can sew it or iron it on, depending on your own preference.

Photo Prints

Out of these methods, this one is a little more complex. But if you are up for a challenge, placing photo prints on your jeans is a unique and inventive way of designing denim. You can paste on just about anything you please, which allows you to express some of yourself in the clothing you wear. Here is a linked tutorial if you’re feeling inspired: https://www.google.com/amp/s/m.wikihow.com/Transfer-Photographs-to-Fabric%3famp=1

If you’re thinking about tossing that old pair of jeans in your closet, I encourage you to think twice. Doing something as simple as turning your denim into something new promotes a future of sustainability and inventiveness. Not only does it limit your waste contribution, but it gives you a chance to express your creativity and spice up your wardrobe.

Claire is a freshman at the George Washington University Colombian College of Arts and Sciences and a journalism minor. From Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, she loves being at the beach, doing art, and anything related to fashion design.
Sarah is a junior at The George Washington University School of Business, studying Finance and Sports Management, with a minor in Spanish. She previously worked at the Her Campus Media headquarters in Boston as a Product and Operations intern. She is a dedicated Boston sports fan, loves to travel, and pets every dog she sees.