Kintsugi jeans repair

These well-loved jeans were bought as an investment purchase a few years ago and have inevitably over time become worn through across the knee. In this era of disposable fashion and with increasing awareness of the real cost in human and environmental terms of the fashion industry, I am learning how to make repairs. It feels good to know that there is still life and value in these jeans, to save them from the rubbish heap (or from the endless re-selling of second-hand clothes in the less developed world) and to buck the fast fashion trend of always wanting what is new. The good old-fashioned, thrifty art of repair has become a revolutionary act!

This jeans repair was inspired by the Japanese ceramic art form / philosophy of kintsugi, in which broken pots are mended with lacquer overlaid with gold leaf. Kintsugi is about finding beauty in broken things. The damage to the item is accepted as part of its history, part of what makes the object beautiful, rather than something which should be discarded or disguised. Often the gold can add more beauty to the object than it had originally.

My kintsugi jeans use gold thread, satin stitched over the hole and over the weaker spots in the remaining fabric, framed by the patch on the reverse which holds it all together.


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