Styling our favourite fabric: How to wear denim

Denim is a tried, and tested staple that deserves a place in everyone's wardrobe. Stylish, hard-wearing and extremely versatile, it’s a fabric we’ve all fallen in love with, in some shape or form. It comes in so many combinations, from dark acid-wash to light wash, cropped to oversized, there’s a style to suit all.  Whether it’s styling or upcycling, we’ve got all the tips you need, here at White Rose, so you can make the most out of your denim looks.

As the outfit combinations you can achieve with denim are infinite, it would be easy for us to write a thesis on just how fabulous denim is. Don’t worry, we won’t do that, instead we’ll round up some of your most asked questions, as we let you in on all our style secrets.

How to style oversized denim

An oversized denim jacket puts a playful and fun twist on a traditional, or cropped jacket style. It’s a versatile and stylish layer that can be paired with almost anything, regardless of the colour or wash. Placing a casual spin on an outfit, oversized denim is great for throwing on with your spring and summer outfits. This baggy denim style is great for both men and women, but how do you pull the look off?

Pairing your oversized denim jacket with a bright floral dress, or skirt can make for the perfect partnership. Choose a blue, or black jacket to let the print on your dress really pop, you could even drape your jacket over your shoulders for a chic fashion look.

Layering the jacket over a hoodie and jeans makes a great weekend style. Try a black oversized denim  jacket with a grey or white hoodie for a refined, yet casual outfit.

How to wear a denim jacket

A denim jacket is a piece that you can integrate into your wardrobe year after year, it’s an ethically-approved wear, simply down to how many times you can style it. Despite their popularity, there is still some confusion on what to wear with them. The line between casual and formal wear has become much more blurred in recent years, with people even opting to take their denim jackets for an evening out - there are no rules!

Wearing a denim jacket with a midi dress or pleated midi skirt makes a wonderful transitional outfit, that can be transformed with footwear, from sandals in the spring, to pointed boots in the autumn. When it comes to summer it’s time to hit the double denim with daring white jeans, and some colourful, bold accessories.

The beauty of fashion is experimentation, don’t be afraid to throw prints together and complete a look that’s completely personal to you.

Shoes to wear with straight leg jeans

The infusion of the bootcut and skinny jean brings us the universal straight leg jean. Sophisticated and chic, these jeans are totally forgiving on the leg, and can be paired with a plethora of styles. Despite their wearable appeal many ask the question of which shoes are best to complete the look. Ankle boots are the perfect companion for straight leg jeans. They’re sleek and flattering, balancing the wider leg pant to create a more proportioned silhouette.

Trainers also make a casual alternative for a relaxed and confident look, however, we’d suggest opting for a high-waist pair to get your legs an elongated look.

How to wear denim on denim

Wearing head-to-toe denim is certainly becoming a hot trend amongst celebrities and style bloggers alike.

Whether you keep the denim-on-denim look casual with distressed lighter colours, or more formal with dark, tailored wears, don’t be afraid to rock that double denim look.

Pick those alternative shades, the more contrast the better. We love a light chambray denim shirt with black jeans, just as much as we love a white denim skirt with a indigo or black denim jacket.

Don’t forget to balance the look out with a simple, basic t-shirt or neutral accessories, otherwise it can become a little overwhelming.

The upcycled denim edit

As well as styling denim, there are many ways you can make unique pieces, just for you.

Upcycling denim can be easy, when you know how, so follow our simple guides and let the creating begin.

How to distress denim

  1. Select the denim you wish to distress
  2. Mark with pen where you wish to distress (try to avoid seams)
  3. Lay out on a flat work station
  4. Sandpaper the area lightly so the fabric is worn down slightly
  5. Insert cardboard under the area as to avoid cutting other fabric
  6. Cut or scrape horizontal slits in the area you’re distressing
  7. Pull out individual threads with tweezers
  8. Clean area with lint roller
  9. Wash jeans to remove debris and thread
  10.  Showcase your new distressed denim wear

How to fray denim jeans

  1. Take a pair of scissors and cut 5mm below the desired jean length (be sure the cut is as straight as possible)
  2. Take a needle and pull the threads out of the fabric
  3. Wash your jeans on relatively fast spin to encourage the fray
  4. Once dry, apply textile adhesive to transition points to avoid the fabric from separating further and fringes getting thicker through frequent wear

How to paint a denim jacket

  1. Choose the denim jacket you wish to transform
  2. Buy or create your own pattern stencil to add words or symbols
  3. Pick fabric paints in complementing colours
  4. Lay jacket down on a flat, even surface
  5. Place stencil in desired location
  6. Gently pour paint over your stencil
  7. Fill in the stencil with a paint brush
  8. Allow to dry without removing stencil
  9. Paint another layer without removing stencil
  10. Allow 3 hours to dry on flat surface
  11. Once 24 hours have passed remove stencil
  12. Your jacket is now done and ready to wear

 So whether you’re styling our upcycling our favourite fabric, we’ve got plenty of women’s denim pieces, and men’s denim garments that are sure to uplift your staple wardrobe here.

Here’s to making more considerate choices with White Rose Fashion!

To volunteer, donate clothes or just get in touch with the White Rose team, call 01159 472 472 or email!

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