Refreshing an old post with a full tutorial and free mending patch pattern download! Sew on patches for jeans are a must in this house, there isn’t an iron on knee patch strong enough to take the hiking and jumping my son does. We try to spend as much time outside as possible, hiking and exploring, which leads to a lot of laundry and even more mending. This is an easy way to mend jeans by hand with no sewing machine required; while I share a few tools to make it even easier, all you truly need are scraps of denim and hand sewing materials.
Here you can see my husband’s jeans repaired! We will see how the beetle holds up with outdoor use; he typically wears jeans when working outside.
Edit to update, 2 years later with weekly washing/drying this is what the beetle looks like! Fuzzy but holding strong!
I also have since used this silhouette in a different way, check it out here: how to mend a rip in jeans with hand embroidery!
If you like this post, check out these other posts while you’re here!
- How To patch a hole with sashiko stitching
- How to upcycle a tshirt into diy patches
- How to machine applique for beginners
- How to sew knee patches with a free cat template
- How to mend jeans by hand without a patch
I used smaller stitches on this version and I think I’ll try again with big stitches like I did for my kids! I like the layered look though and this was easy to finish in a night.
From the past and a slightly different beetle shape are these super soft jegging/jean hybrids. Once I spotted a growing hole on one leg, I decided it was time to act. I love that these look cute, cover the hole, but also make them more durable overall.
How fun are these pants now! I love the mix of denim shades.
My daughter was super jealous that the “bug pants” weren’t for her – I think I need to put this silhouette on more things soon, not just sew on patches for jeans! I stitched them down over a few afternoons while the kids played in the backyard.I like to think they can feel the love that was sewn into these! It makes me happy that these pants will last at least a few more months, and maybe get passed down to my daughter too. Sashiko stitching is so simple, if you’ve never sewn anything by hand this would be a great first project! You can find a bunch of other sashiko project tutorials in this post.
Pin this tutorial for how to mend jeans by hand with this link or collage image:
How to mend jeans by hand
- I love micro-tip scissors for projects like this
- Fusible web transfer method- here I’m using Thermoweb’s HeatnBond Lite but my favorite is the even thinner & no tracing required FeatherLite Sheets.
- Hand sewing needles
- Cotton floss; here I’m using Sulky Cotton Petites but embroidery floss, pearl cotton, sashiko thread will all work. Amazon – Etsy – Sulky.com
- Denim scraps
- Free PDF pattern for the beetle-sign up for my newsletter and get the free download once you confirm your subscription! If you’re already a subscriber, you can access the pattern with the password in each newsletter, in the resource library.
If it is a larger hole, I’d recommend putting a “backing” knit square on the inside before stitching, just to give it some extra strength, you can see a photo of this option in this similar tutorial.
Step 1- Print the pattern off! Trace it on to the papery side of heat n bond or print it if you’re using the FeatherLite Sheets.
Step 2- Cut roughly around the drawing and follow the package directions to iron it on to the wrong side of the fabric. Repeat for all parts.
Step 3- Cut along the lines, peel off the backing, and follow the directions again to adhere it over the holes. Repeat steps 1 & 2 for the next layer’s pieces.
Step 4- Time to sew! You can go around the edges or do a simple dense, straight stitch like I did here, inspired by sashiko.