Your favourite jeans have a rip, your winter jumper is pilling and your most loyal blouse is missing a button. No reason to panic and say a premature goodbye, because it is not so difficult to repair your clothes yourself. This doesn’t just mean we can keep enjoying our favourite pieces for longer, it also does the environment a favour.

Whether merino, cashmere or new wool – as high-quality as wool is, it does tend to suffer from pilling. Pilling occurs through friction when wearing and leads to small, unsightly tangles. If pilling occurs, it doesn’t have to be shaved off right away. It is sometimes enough to give the item of clothing a comb with a pilling comb. To remove more stubborn pills, you can either use a professional fabric shaver or a simple wet razor. If you gently stretch out the material and glide carefully over the surface, the pills are removed gently and safely. But bear in mind that the pills should never be plucked by hand, as this can cause threads to come loose by mistake.


A hole does not automatically mean the end of your favourite piece of clothing. Darning and patching make more sense today than ever before. To give it a go, all you need is yarn in the same colour as the fabric and a darning or sewing needle. Firstly knot the lower end of the yarn and then sew all the way around the hole stitch by stitch, staying as close to the edges of the hole as possible. Then insert the needle with the yarn where the thread and fabric are not yet joined and start sewing from one side of the hole to the other. Finally, tie off the thread using a loop. You can also use a darning egg, a sewing machine and various tutorials for support.


Besides holes, loose buttons are also very easy to fix. For this, take a thread in a similar colour, double it up and tie a knot at the end. After the first stitch, pick up the button. Sew on the button with three or four stitches. Then wrap the thread around the threads between the button and fabric several times. Finally, pull the thread through the back of the fabric and cut it off short.


Sometimes you have a piece that still fits well but it is missing something that you can’t put your finger on. Sometimes it’s the faded colour, sometimes its an irreversible stain. Dyeing in another or, in the case of a stain, a darker colour can give a piece of clothing a whole new lease of life. But be warned, not every material is suitable for dyeing. Cotton, linen, cellulose and viscose work best. However, wool and silk can also be dyed. All synthetic fibres, on the other hand, remain impervious and resistant to colour. Unfortunately this is usually also true for seams and zips. You can carry out the dyeing process wither in the washing machine or by hand. Afterwards, you should use dyeing salt so that there is no loss of colour or discolouration when you wash the item next.


If trouser legs are too long or you want to turn a midi skirt into a mini skirt, you can easily shorten them and redo the hem for an almost invisible finish. You don’t need a sewing machine, all you need is safety pins, a sewing needle, yarn in the same colour as the item and a good eye. With the item inside out, turn up the hem until you have reached the desired length and secure in place with safety pins. Thread the yarn through the needle and tie a simple knot – not doubled. Now turn the hem section down slightly again towards the outside and make an approx. 0.5 cm stitch, first in the hem allowance and then with a spacing of 0.5–1 cm into just one thread of the fabric so that it is not visible from the right side. Continue alternating between the hem allowance and the fabric with this spacing. This is called a blind stitch because it is not visible from the outside. Continue until you are back to where you started, tie off the thread and cut off any excess. Your new, shortened version of your old favourite is now ready to wear.