How to Fray Fabric: Easy Ways Of Fraying Fabric

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Frayed fabric edges have that little character signature that says, “I’m shabby but can be ever so chic!” This tutorial will teach you 5 methods of how to fray your own fabric for a trendy and edgy style. 

The whole idea behind using frayed fabrics in fashion is an oxymoron: how could something be both ‘shady’ AND stylish? It’s all about learning when and where each type should come into play on garments–and then letting it hang loose!    

Fraying Fabric

A frayed edge finish is a great way to add some extra style points and make your clothes really pop. 

Think about what you can do with old garments, from updating an outfit all together or just reusing pieces in new ways by sewing them up yourself!

There are many other great ways to use a frayed edge. Such as:

  • Table linen – The more you use your table linen, the better it will look. You can have a frayed edge for added style and convenience!
  • Quilts – Quilts are a great way to show off personality and style. They come in all different shapes, sizes, and colors–you can even make your own with modern quilting techniques!
  • Scarves – Scarves are perfect for a quick run-up, and they come in all sorts of styles.
  • Jackets – Adding interest to the edge of a jacket or cape can be done in many ways. For example, adding tassels and pockets is not only fashionable but practical too!
  • Jeans – Fashion is all about mixing and matching, but sometimes it’s time for a complete overhaul. Jeans – Upgrading those denim pants to shorts or skirts in need of some new length? If so you must have heard that these are the best!

How To Fray Fabric

Types Of Fabric To Fray

When learning how to fray fabric, it is important that you choose the right material. Most fabrics will start fraying if not neatened but some are more susceptible than others. 

Natural fibers like cotton or linen have a tendency of doing so easily because they’re soft and fluffy in nature which makes them prone to tiny threads popping off from their surface when stressed too much.

This doesn’t happen with other types as much unless someone intentionally tries pulling at those areas intentionally such as denim jeans due to their tight weave design causing stress on specific spots all over where there’s no stretch whatsoever!

Methods of Fraying Fabrics

 Fraying the hems of your jeans can be really fun, but it’s important that you find a method for fraying with good results and an end result. 

There are many different types of edges out there – some look great in an old-fashioned way while others prefer more modern styles like shabby chic or Fringe style fashion trends!

Frayed seams range from very choppy (if done poorly) to displaying soft fringe patterns on each individual threadbare jean hemline as seen below:

  1. Using Pinking Shears
  2. Seam Ripper
  3. Chopping and Washing
  4. Tearing
  5. Trims and Applique

How To Fray Fabric Using Pinking Shears

Using an instrument called pinking shears, you can create that delicate but nonetheless stunning frayed edge on your wedding dress. 

These scissors work by cutting zigzag lines across the fabric and leaving it so there’s just enough unraveling for style points without being too overwhelming or loose looking in any way

How To Fray Fabric Using Seam Ripper

A seam ripper is a great tool for those looking to give their jeans an interesting and unique look. It requires some patience, but it’s worth all of the work!

Stitch Across the Top

To stop fraying, start by deciding where you want the stitching to occur. 

A simple machine line of either small straight stitches or a narrow zigzag will set your margin for repair and make an invisible line on which fabric glue can be applied along with matching thread so that there is no gap when it comes time to mend any future tears in garment materials due from wear-and-tear over time.

While these methods may seem like good ideas at first glance they all have drawbacks worth considering before committing yourself:  First off sewing through cloth leaves more bulk than just using normal running stitch – this makes clothes look lumpy instead of lacy; secondly using heavy-duty glues often takes longer (or fails altogether) if used improperly

Cut Vertically and Fray

Once the stitch line is in place, gently comb or tease out any loose threads from the fabric up to it. 

You can achieve this frayed look with a needle and seam ripper for pulling strands of thread; go bold by using a wire brush as well! It’s also helpful if you make some vertical cuts along lengthwise sewn areas before rifling through the opposite side (to avoid tangles).

How To Fray Fabric Using Chopping & Washing

Chopping is a technique that can be used to create interesting and creative garments. It’s especially appealing for the adventurous seamstress who isn’t afraid of getting their hands dirty or wearing out fast. 

The next time you’re in need of something unique, give this one-time process from start to finish! Just make sure not to wash your clothes with anything else because all those threads will go everywhere (and maybe even leak through).

How To Fray Fabric Using Tearing

Tearing fabric will also result in a frayed edge. Snip at the point you decide to tear and then pull on it, giving your torn edges an even more worn look!

How To Fray Fabric Using Trims & Applique

Frayed fabric is often seen as old-fashioned, but it’s not if you have the know-how. Make trims with fraying by cutting strips of cloth in two opposite directions and binding them together at one end before sewing up each side like so:

With this technique, any shape can be sewn onto a surface – whether it is appliqueing on some patches for clothing or making ruffles out of serviettes!


Fraying fabric edges can be the perfect way to add some extra creative shine to your garment. It’s always wise to make sure that this technique works well with both style and fabric before you go ahead and use it, but if everything looks right after a little trial and error then that shabby chic masterpiece will really stand out!


Robert Patricia

Robert Patricia is a data analytic and content creator. He has worked extensively with large data sets to glean insights for both public and private sector clients. He has used this knowledge to create compelling content for brands across the internet. Albert also enjoys creating content for websites and social media. He is an expert at creating catchy headlines and understands how to capture the attention of readers.

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