How to Make the Perfect Frayed Denim Jacket in 3 Steps

denim jacket 2 How to Make the Perfect Frayed Denim Jacket in 3 StepsPhoto: Style Du Monde

When it comes to denim this fall, the more ripped, frayed, or generally distressed the fabric, the better. So while the denim jacket has been around since forever, according to the street-style crowd, there’s a new way to wear it: with a rough, frayed, collarless neckline.

Hemming your denim the traditional way is so 2014, and there’s an easy way to update last year’s jean jacket into something totally trend-led. In fact, turning your denim jacket into a collarless style involves so little effort—just hack away at it with a pair of scissors, and finish off the job with sandpaper.

Whether you’re snipping a fitted, boxy, dark, or acid-washed denim jacket, the key is to make sure the newly cut neckline follows the natural collar. Also, to make sure the distressed look appears intentional, it’s always safer to use the sandpaper liberally (i.e. over-fray rather than under-fray the fabric).

Before you hack away at your favorite jean jacket, learn how to do it the right way in this super-quick, three-step tutorial. It’s nearly impossible to mess up this DIY, but if you don’t want to invest big on the project, try it on this $32.90 boxy style from Forever 21.

You’ll need: 

  • Denim jacket
  • Sharp fabric scissors
  • Sandpaper blocks of varying levels of coarseness

Step one: Cut in an even line by directly following the seam of your collar with a pair of scissors. Use sharp fabric scissors to cut the stitching that connects the collar to the neck of the jacket.

Step two: Fray the edge by rubbing a sandpaper block along the neckline where the collar used to sit. You may need to experiment with different pieces of sandpaper to find the right level of coarseness. It may take several minutes to get the fabric as distressed as you’d like. Remember that the edge will continue to fray as the jacket is worn and washed.

Step three: Repeat the process on other edges, such as the jacket’s waist hem and cuffs, if you want a particularly distressed look.

MORE: How to DIY a Denim Jacket Covered in Patches