by Laura E. Alvarez
“Emerging in the 15th century as a reaction to the prevailing aesthetic of lavishness, ornamentation, and rich materials, wabi-sabi is the art of finding beauty in imperfection and profundity in earthiness, of revering authenticity above all.” Read more here in this great article about wabi-sabi. The idea of wabi-sabi is so close to Byron and my heart that we almost put it in the name of our blog.
I care just as much about showing you how to patch your jeans as I care about showing you the beauty in imperfection as a way of life. With each patch, as I lovingly choose a different shade of gray, blue or white thread the jeans become more and more beautiful. This particular pair uses scraps from his younger son’s ripped up jeans that were all but destroyed scrambling down a rock in Joshua Tree over a year ago. That’s the darker bits you see above.
These are what is left of the younger son’s jeans after snatching away many pieces for patches.First, I cut out a nice little piece from the sacrificial jeans that will cover the rip with a bit of extra space around it.
Next, I turn the jeans I am going to repair inside out. I pin the little scrap which is indeed a patch to the inside of the jeans, covering the rip.I zigzag around the patch, letting the zig zag stitch go back and forth partly on the patch, partly on the jeans. This is really a fun part.I turn the jeans back right side out and zig zag over the rip in whatever way makes sense. The goal is to have the rip closed.
And lastly, I admire the new patch, as it has once again changed this pair of jeans, furthering it as an artwork and example of wabi-sabi.
All denim by Levi’s.