Tuesday, April 20, 2010

distressed lace diy

hello my friends!
I thought I'd share an awesome little technique with you that is just beautiful if you find the right fabrics!
It involves sewing together several layers of fabric (2-7 layers), and then shearing the layers to create a sort of distressed effect. It works great with a solid fabric over a patterned one, so that when you cut the top layer, you reveal the colours underneath. You can even get fancy and stitch in shapes such as circles for a rose effect.

Anyways, here's my version. I used an Italian blue gray suiting wool over a creamy embroidered lace. I also used a white piece of silk organza under the lace (which you can barely see in the photos) to stabilize it for sewing.
This technique would definitely look awesome with denim, or any woven fabric that gets nice and fluffly and ragged when you cut it.

Sew through all your layers in lines going on the bias, or diagonally across your fabric piece. The lines can be anywhere from a 1/4" to 1" apart. You can also sew wavy lines, or in simple shapes.
I did straight lines 1/2" apart.

Cut through the top layer only, between each line of stitching. Rub the cut edges to make them fray, or throw it in the dryer with a brush to really make the edges fluff up.

Sew your pieces together and make sure to press the seams open.

I cut out some of the flowers in the lace and stitched them on top to bring out the colour of the lace underneath. Just make tiny stitches all around the flower to keep it in place.

Voila! Happy sewing!


  1. What a wonderful tutorial! Loooove the colour and fabric choices for this project - thank you for sharing!

  2. O wow. that is gnarly..... OK so My fingers are all thumbs but I will TOTALY give this a try...

  3. This turned out very beautiful. I am currently taking sewing classes right now, so I might actually have to try this trick out. :)

  4. Wow, this is beautiful! totally love it

  5. WOW. great job! i like how you posted the process work and the finished product. its absolutely beautiful - you're so talented - i wish i could do that!!!

  6. so great!