I know, I know, July Pinterest project is 17 days late. Better late than never though, right? Colored jeans are all the rage these days and there’s been a lot of pinning of DIY colored jeans so I decided to try it out.
I had one pair of jeans that I was thisclose to donating. They were about 5 years old and the knees were so worn out that they were white (the picture makes them look better than they actually did!). It’s just really hard to find good jeans that fit when your short. So, I decided not to thrown them out and to bleach them and dye them.
But, I also had found a perfectly fitting pair of white jeans at a thrift store that I was gonna try it out on too. That was a once in a lifetime experience, finding a perfect fitting pair of jeans at a thrift store. Does. Not. Happen.
I got to work. Now, I hate bleach. This was the first time I had ever used it and it will probably be my last. I simply bleached the jeans in a 3:1 ratio of water and bleach. I think mine was 12 cups water and 4 cups bleach. After two hours nothing happened. So I poured about 3 more cups of bleach into the bucket and instantly started seeing results. This part is totally a trial and error depending on the darkness of the pants you’re bleaching.
Occasionally I stirred the whole mixture with a wooden spoon that I threw away (don’t use your stirring utensil again, trash it!) once I was done. Just to make sure it was bleaching nice and even.
Now, from here is where I started with the white jeans, because those didn’t need to be bleached. I tried out a few different brands/types of dye.
First, I tried dying the purple jeans with powdered Tulip Dye in a bucket and letting them soak. It came out totally uneven though. So the second time around, I used iDye (a new product on the market) in the washing machine. This worked perfectly. It was SO easy and they came out perfectly even and vibrant.
The wine colored ones I used liquid Rit Dye in the washing machine. The color came out very well but the process was too tedious for me. You had to boil water, soak the dye, add salt, let it sit and strategically pour it into the detergent drawer. Also, the color looks nothing like the sample below, it came out more pink.
For all dye jobs I simply followed the instructions on the packages.
I attempted a teal color with the jeans I bleached. Well, after I bleached them I guess I was a little excited.
I didn’t inspect them and just went ahead and dyed them. Turns out, there were dark magenta marks all over the back of the jeans. As if I marker went through the wash with them. You couldn’t see them when the jeans were dark blue but they were totally noticeable in the teal color. So that’s when I re-dyed them the wine color.
The end result was a nice rich purple color and a kind of blah pinkish color. And, as you’ll see in the photo, the pink ones totally lost their elasticity and the button burnt right off of them from the bleach.
So, in the end I donated the pink pair. Maybe they’ll fit someone else who knows how to replace the button? The purple though, I love them!
Maybe if I luck out and find another pair of white jeans I’ll dye them the teal color!
Here was the cost break down:
Jeans: $0 (had them)
White Jeans: $7.99 (thrift store)
Total cost of 4 packs of dye: $9.56 (I used coupons)
Total = $20.04/ $10.02 per pair of jeans. But I only really got one pair out of it, 20 bucks though, still a bargain. And if I had to do it again I’m a pro now so I wouldn’t bust through four packs of dye!
Good luck if you try it out. The best part (obviously) was the outcome, a little tedious playing the waiting game. I’ve never watched the washing machine so much in my life before!
Heather @ Like A Cup Of Tea says
After using IDye did you notice anything left behind in your washer? I’ve been wanting to try this.
Lindsey T says
No, nothing left over. I washed a load of old rags right after so that if there was any color left it only got on the rags, not a load of clothes. But, there was no evidence of any dye.
I love love love the purple ones! I never thought of doing that…
Lindsey T says
Thanks, I’m pretty fond of them too. Try it!!
Claire Trembath says
Hi, do you know what material were the white jeans? Were they 100% cotton?
Hi Claire! Yes, they were 100% cotton!
This is an amazing blog and i like this jeans colour.