Recycled Jeans turned Denim Jacket

My friend Audrey over at Skirt Fixation made an incredible denim quilt that she posted the other day, out of upcycled jeans. When I read she made it for a refashioners challenge (which is right up my alley), I knew I couldn’t resist making something to enter myself (although that quilt is pretty hard to top)! The contest is over on  After taking all of the jeans out of my upcycle pile (doesn’t everyone have one of those?!), I decided to make a Denim Jacket for my Falafel girl.

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

I have always wanted to make one of these! Of course, when I started looking, I could not find a pattern to use. So, my next thought was “what pattern do I own, that is close enough so I can adapt it into a jean jacket?”.

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

I fell back on one of my favorite patterns, the Bookworm Button Up (affiliate link). You can see other Bookworm Button Ups I have made here and here and here.

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

I used it as a base, and then made some obvious changes. I shortened it, and extended each of the front pieces instead of adding plackets, and I broke the back up into sections (and took out the pleat).

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

The most fun I had was in embellishing it! For the back, I used the same method I used here with water soluble fabric (affiliate link). I think it adds a little whimsy, at the same time it uses up a bunch of scraps.

  Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

A friend had made me those wool felt feathers, a few years ago, and I have been holding on to them to use on the right project. I think they are perfect for this!

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

For the hem, I unpicked a wasitband on one of the old jeans I had, and used it, as is (just upside down).

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

I left the distressed spots that were part of the jeans. For some pieces, I actually turned them inside out for some color variation.

Upcycled Jeans turned into a Denim Jacket

I had so much fun with this one, and the best part is, it used up some jeans (and scraps) that were taking up space!

Upcycled Jeans turned into Jean jacket

AND my girl now has a snazzy new jean jacket to go with her sassy new haircut!


What have YOU upcycled today?

16 thoughts on “Recycled Jeans turned Denim Jacket

  1. I love the jean jacket but man that haircut is super cute on your girl. What a brave change for her from long hair. Please let her know those out in cyber land think she looks amazing.

    1. Thank you Michelle! I will tell her. She is loving this new look. She is a tween now in intermediate school, so this was her “I’m grown up” change.

  2. A couple of years ago, I made an old-jeans jacket for a toddler friend. It was so fun that I made one for myself, too, but I guess I never took pictures. I went a little overboard with the machine embroidery, with a giant butterfly on the back and tulips and chrysanthemums on the front. But it’s a good weight, and I loved puzzling it out from what I had on hand.

  3. Thanks for the mention of my quilt! I had so much fun working with old jeans too. But I definitely think your project took more thought and talent!

  4. love this jacket… especially the waistband you re-used as the hem. 🙂 I saw some jackets that had similar backs on them in an upscale clothing store recently, so you are seriously on trend! Great job, as usual!

  5. Always nice to use up the things in the refashion pile. You did a great job! She looks terrific and…. her hair looks super cute too! Hmmm or whatever tweens like to be called today. Sorry, my kids are having kids. Way to go mom! Hopefully when she is older she will still want you to be doing refashion/sewing for her. I hopped over from Refashion Co-op to see the back of the jacket!

  6. That is a great jacket; really fun use of a bunch of piles of upcycle-ables (I’ve got a similar pile threatening to take over that I need to work on!). And her hair looks awesome! It really puts the spotlight on her beautiful face. She looks so grown up!

Comments are closed.