alt=

How to machine dye old jeans with Dylon

With the shops closed and the majority of us spending most of our time at home, now is a good time to go through your wardrobe.

Perhaps you need to do a purge of things that don’t fit or no longer suit your lifestyle.

Put what you don’t want into a bag for the charity shops as they’ll be in need of donations when they re-open.

Alternatively, you can take your old clothes to a clothes bank if there’s one in your local area or cut up old/stained clothing to make into dusters.

If you have an item you like but you want to breathe new life into it, why not try an upcycle? Fabric paint, dye, embroidery, zips, and studs can all inject new life into an old item.

alt=<jeans>

I’m going to share one of my favourite upcycling methods and show how machine dye transformed these vintage jeans.

When I first bought these jeans, I really liked the fit of them but I wasn’t crazy about the colour. (I took before pics but for the life of me, I can’t find them!)

alt=<dyed jeans>
Bored in the house and I’m in the house bored

I was at a Tola Vintage kilo sale when I spotted these Levis 511 jeans. They are a slim fit but not skinny and low rise.

What I liked most about them was how thick and hardwearing the denim is. PS, I spilled water on them in the pic above, hence the weird discolouration!

I wore them a few times but I found it hard to match the weird grey/white colour and so they soon were left in a drawer.

Browsing in Hickeys one day, I saw some navy Dylon dye and I decided it was time to dye the jeans.

The process was really simple. I’d hand-dyed things before which can get messy but this was machine dye so I just had to pop the jeans into the wash with the dye capsule and run a cycle on 30C or 40C.

Then I had to wash them again with detergent on the same cycle and wait for them to dry.

The jeans emerged a gorgeous dark navy with the stitching remaining white. I hadn’t planned this but I really liked the effect.

alt=<levis 511 jeans>
Levis 511 dyed jeans

However, the brown Levis patch on the back did dye which I was hoping it wouldn’t.

I don’t know if there’s a way around this but if there is, let me know!

Since I dyed the jeans, I’ve worn them much more frequently and found it easier to match them with outfits. The colour has also remained strong with numerous washes almost two years on.

This dye will remain on anything it stains, some got onto a towel I was using and it is still there to this day! So wear rubber gloves and old clothes and follow instructions carefully!

alt=<levis-jeans>
Levis tab

The colour of the dye on the box didn’t look that dark but it came out a deep navy blue which was exactly what I wanted. As far as I can remember the shade I picked was called navy blue.

Dylon also have a dye especially for faded jeans which I may use to revive old pairs in the future.

alt=<levis-jeans>
Levis 511 jeans

It’s important to remember that every fabric is different and dye results will depend on the permeability of the fabric and type of fabric. And some fabrics can’t be dyed, so check before you break open the dye.

The weight of the fabric and the amount of synthetic fibres will affect the final result, synthetic mixes will come out lighter.

From a sustainability point of view, obviously the dye residue will go into the water and there’s a good bit of washing involved but it’s probably still more sustainable than going out and buying a brand new item.

Machine-dying a few items with one capsule is probably the most sustainable way of doing it.

alt=<levis>
Stitching on the back pocket

If you want to avoid artificial dyes, you can experiment with natural dyes, such as fruits and vegetables. Check out Moya (Environmental Eadai) on Instagram or Aisling Duffy Designs for natural dye inspiration.

Hope you all enjoyed this upcycling post and let me know if you decide to try machine dyes.

alt=<levis-511>
My dyed Levis 511s

As for what else I’m wearing in the outfit above, it’s all vintage or thrifted except for my sunglasses. My boots were about €22 from a charity shop, shirt was about €6 from a charity shop (both River Island).

The jeans and my leather waiscoat were sold by kilo so I can’t remember what I paid but whole outfit is probably only about €55.

Thanks for reading and be sure to check out the competition I’m running on my Instagram and Facebook pages at the moment.

Edel

 

alt=

Why I didn’t buy any new clothes for my holiday

Nothing makes me happier than a new item of clothing.

Whether it’s the high street, a charity shop or a vintage kilo sale, I’ll be there, purse in hand, seeking the dopamine hit that comes with the latest purchase.

However, I have often bought items on impulse that didn’t really fit or suit me or didn’t match anything in my wardrobe. And this often happens when it comes to buying summer or holiday clothes.

These unworn items gather dust in bags, with me occasionally trying them on and discarding them in a huff and eventually they end up in the charity shop (usually when I move house because I’m quite the hoarder).

While going through my summer wardrobe, I realised I had quite a lot of things from the year before that I had not worn or only worn a few times.

For instance, I had two swimsuits and a bikini barely worn and shorts and a skirt that I hadn’t worn as they were *ahem* a little snug.

I have put on weight over the past year and a half and while I’m still relatively slim, I was hanging onto clothes that didn’t fit in the hopes I could somehow squeeze into them later in the year.

This is a toxic trap because I ended up feeling miserable every time I tried on something that didn’t fit.

While I ordered a couple of things online for holidays, nothing was quite right and I ended up returning everything. I was also short on cash prior to going away so I couldn’t afford lots of new things.

Eventually, I decided to just bring all my summer clothes and resolved to bring anything I didn’t wear to the charity shop on my return.

Here’s a taste of what I wore to Barcelona and how I created a capsule wardrobe with the clothes and shoes I already had.

alt=<levis=t-shirt>
Wearing a men’s t-shirt from Bershka and cut-off shorts

On our visit to Park Guell, I wore a casual and comfy outfit as there was a lot of walking uphill involved.

I also wore these shorts on our first full day in Barcelona, with a Guns N Roses tee.

They are one of my favourite items in my wardrobe but they are almost threadbare and I needed to get them patched before holidays.

I recommend altering or fixing your clothes before buying new ones but I may have to say adios to these shorts soon.

For nights out, I had packed a couple of options, including my black leather skirt.

This was €5 from Betty Bojangles which sells secondhand and vintage clothing in Smithfield and I absolutely love the fit and mock croc finish.

I paired it with my Shein green sequin top for dinner on our first night and wore it with my Topshop floral bodysuit for drinks with friends.

alt=
Excuse the lighting and setting!
alt=<black-skirt-floral-bodysuit>
Black skirt with floral Topshop bodysuit

For our trip to the Bunkers del Carmel, which is a popular spot on the city limits where people gather to enjoy the view, I wore a summery blue and white dress which I found in a charity shop for €4 during the heatwave.

alt=<blue-and-white-dress>
Blue and white dress

It was the hottest day when we went to the Basilica Sagrada Familia (that big ol’ church) and I somewhat foolishly chose a crop top and high waisted skirt.

I know you aren’t meant to wear “revealing” clothing to sacred places and I was told to pull the top down on the way in but as it was the end of the trip, I was running out of outfits.

This top from Penneys and the blue a-line skirt was bought in sale from Stradivarius.

I did (unintentionally) wear cross earrings, which I feel made up for my otherwise poor outfit choice!

I choose this light floral H&M dress for strolling on the Rambla de Catalunya and admiring Casa Battlo.

alt=
Floral H&M dress

To complete my wardrobe, I brought two bags, a crossbody and a rucksack, as well as several necklaces, earrings and four pairs of shoes.

When I came home, I immediately took the clothes I hadn’t worn to the charity shop- they were all too small anyway!

I think that if you’re struggling to let go of unworn/old clothes, giving yourself an ultimatum such as wearing them by a certain date can work.

I’m very glad that I didn’t buy any new swimwear as we ended up only going to the beach once for a stroll on our final day. We had attempted to go another day but got caught in a giant thunderstorm! So I actually didn’t get to wear my bikini or swimsuits at all!

Hope you all enjoyed this post and leave me a comment and let me know your thoughts on buying clothes “just for holidays”.

And in case you’re wondering, I did treat myself to some new purchases in BCN – look out for an outfit post coming soon!

I will be writing an in-depth post on Barcelona so keep your eyes peeled for that.

Thanks for reading,  if you would like to follow me on social media,  check out my InstagramTwitter and Facebook page.

Edel

 

 

 

ALT=

Wardrobe Transitions – Spring to Summer

Is your wardrobe overflowing but you still find yourself wearing the same jeans and jumper combos over and over again?

It’s said we wear 20% of our wardrobe 80% of the time and I’m definitely guilty of  this. At work, I’m usually wearing a pair of black jeans or black leather trousers and a blouse and at the weekend, I’m in blue jeans and a jumper or my PJ’s…

I have so many other items in my wardrobe that don’t get rotated often so on Easter Sunday I decided to wear something slightly different.

The weather was nice and I found a pair of Levi’s cut-off’s I’d bought for €2 in a charity shop over winter.

I rummaged around for a pair of black tights and added my Guns ‘n’ Roses band t-shirt, River Island boots and my satin blue bomber jacket.

Voila, I had a really cute outfit which didn’t suit the occasion theme whatsoever but at least it wasn’t a jumper and jeans!

alt=

A brown belt, simple black choker and my pretty floral bag from Spitalfields Market completed the look.

I liked this outfit so much that I wore it again the next day with runners when I was at the National Botanic Gardens.

alt=

Not only do I wear the same clothes over and over (#outfitrepeater) but I also tend to use the same handbag even though I own approximately 20 bags.

Although I really just want to be Stormzy’s mum and have 100 bags… (Stormzy fans will know what I’m on about!)

Shoes are the same, I own a crazy amount of shoes and boots, yet I’m always in one of two pairs of runners. My boots looked way better with this outfit and suited the outfit “theme” more.

Was there ever a less Easter-y outfit?!

ALT=

It got me thinking how many other items are in my wardrobe that I could wear more often? At this time of the year, it’s a good idea to reassess what’s in your wardrobe.

These are some my favourite items for this time of the year.

1. Leather jacket

Stylish, practical and a plain black one is always fashionable. My one is floral and loud however…

alt=

2. Ghillie shoes or loafers

Time to let your feet breathe. I was bravely wearing loafers in January like an idiot yet I have barely worn them outside the office in the past few months.

 

3. A gilet

You can begin retiring your bulkier jackets and use gilets to stay cosy during the chilly spring evenings.

4. White jeans

White jeans are the ultimate summery look and although they’re a pain in the arse to keep clean, they are a really simple wardrobe update.

 

5. Patterned trousers or jeans

Leave your blue and black jeans aside and try a patterned pair or a different colour for a change.

 

6. Shorts or skirts with black tights

It’s definitely mild enough to get your cute shorts and skirts out of the wardrobe and dress them up with boots or go casual with your favourite runners.

7. Printed playsuit or jumpsuit 

These are a perfect alternative to your jeans, you can wear tights with a playsuit until it gets properly warm.

 

8. Camisoles over a plain white long sleeve top. 

This is one of my favourite outfit looks and recently I’ve been layering dressy tops that I used to keep for nights out over a white top for a cute casual look at home or at work.

9. Suede jacket

If you don’t have a leather jacket, a suede jacket is perfect for a spring/summer evening cover-up. I love this brown fringe one from Tola Vintage, great for festivals.

I’ve decided to add a total at the end of my outfit posts to let you know exactly how much my thrifty outfits really cost.

This one was a little more expensive as the boots are real leather but overall it is still quite good value.

Outfit Cost

Belt- Charity shop €1.

Shorts- Charity shop €2.

Jacket- Gifted from @bomberjacketgirls.

Boots- €45 on sale from €90 River Island.

Choker- €3.50 for set of two in Penneys.

Tights- €2 Penneys.

Bag- £12/€14 Spitalfields Market.

T-shirt- £15/€18 Missguided.

Total= €85.50.

PS- the jacket was a gift but I’m not being paid to promote it.

Hope you guys liked this look and the tips on transitional dressing. Leave me a comment below and let me know.

Thanks for reading as always and click the links to check out my InstagramTwitter and Facebook page here.

Edel