Painted denim is a great option for spring, and if you weren’t totally on board with the idea before, I’m sure Blake Lively’s painted jean look changed your mind. You can buy the exact jeans that Lively wore, but it’ll cost you — around $495 to be exact. You can also easily (and cheaply) DIY painted floral jeans, if you don’t exactly have that kind of cash to be dropping on a pair of jeans, hand-painted or not.
You can throw together this fun fashion craft for about $25. You’ll spend the most money on the jeans, but I picked up a pair from the thrift store for $4.99. Score! So, snag a pair of pants and get yourself some fabric paint and you’re well on your way to getting this DIY started.
Of course, you can be as creative as you’d like with this, since you'll literally be painting freehand. If you want to recreate Lively’s exact look and put cherry blossoms on your jeans, go for it! I opted to paint daisies all over mine because I’ve fallen super hard for this ‘70s trend. It's OK if you're not the next Monet. I'm certainly not, so if I can do this, so can you.
So, let’s get started, shall we?
- A pair of jeans
- Fabric paint in whatever colors you want (I used Tulip brand glacier white, lime, sunshine yellow, and golden tan)
- Scrap piece of cardboard
- Paper (for printing your design on)
1. Make A Stencil
Print out a picture of your design. Then, cut the design out, and, using tape, place the design on your pants. You can play around with the placement until you find something you’re happy with. It’s good to have a plan before you ever start painting.
Now that you have your design planned out, practice painting before you ever start working on your jeans. Jeans are a pretty unforgiving surface, so you want to have plenty of practice before you actually get started.
3. Set Up Your Space
Lay down your newspaper to get your workstation all set up and ready for paint. Also, be sure to wear clothes that you won’t mind getting paint on!
4. Paint Away
Before you begin to paint, slide your piece of cardboard in the leg of your jeans. This gives you a flat surface to work on and helps keep the paint from seeping through to the other side. And now, you’re all set to start painting! It took me about three coats to get the paint as opaque as I have it here.
5. Let It Dry
Allow the front to dry for about 24 hours before you add any designs to the back.
Wait 72 hours after you’re done painting, then turn your pants inside out and throw them in the wash to really help the paint set into the fabric.
After the dryer, they’re ready to wear! I took mine for a little test drive at a nearby playground.
Now, you have your very own (super cheap) pair of hand-painted jeans. And they were hand-painted by you, which makes it that much more fun. Go out and work your floral jeans that are so on-trend, you flower child, you!
Images: Dario Ortega