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Discussion Starter #1
So I am going to dress as a scarecrow this year. I picked up a real old farmers scythe from the flea market and I have a GrimStitchFactory mask. I cannot find overalls used anywhere, I have been looking for 6 weeks. I am going to be forced to go to a Tractor Supply store this weekend and buy some, I am small at 30" in the waist. Once I have them what would you guys recommend doing to them? Rip them or brush them against concrete to rough them up? Bleach ? Dark tea stains? I need some ideas because I only have about 3 weeks before a work party.
 

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Typical Ghoul Next Door
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I did a quick aging on one of my costumes a while back that was pretty nifty...

First, wash it, dry it and then ball it up so it gets super wrinkly and the washing takes out all the fabric finishers/coatings.

I got one of these drill bit attachments used for stripping paint to do some overall passes to fray the fabric. Test it out to get the hang of it on areas like the pant cuffs and knees first as those are commonly very worn in a really old pair of pants but use a light touch. I would put either foam noodles or cardboard tube/rolled cardboard inside the legs/body area to help see the areas better and hold them away from the sides/back as you're working on it.

Also get some sandpaper for finer fraying around edges. I wrap the sandpaper around a sponge for better grip, but they also make sandpaper blocks that are a bit more $.

The drill tool/sandpaper needs to be done with a very light hand, and take breaks to check overall effect. You can always go back and take it down more, but you can't put fix too much wear if you go too hard on the fabric.

It would be super easy to go too far if you're using the drill attachment, so if you aren't working with really thick fabric, likely recommend using sandpaper only to make sure you have better control.

Next part, paints. I do aging using three types of coloring depending. Almost black (like a really dark brown black), medium brown or green depending on exposure and either white paint or bleach. If the fabric is medium or dark colored, I use bleach, if it's light I generally use only darker colors, but hit it with a misting of bleach in the high traffic areas. I use a combo of spray bottles with diluted paint/water and mist areas like the main torso and knees and waist, and then I may dunk the end cuffs into a darker water/paint mix. I use acrylic paint mixed with water. I do all this out in the grass, and have a hose handy as it sometimes looks nice to wet down areas and then pour diluted paint or dip ends into it and watch the paint "bloom" up the fabric.

I may finish with a finger/brush spatter and using just slightly diluted paint at that point. Especially if I'm doing any blood spatter.

Finally I'll take a diluted water/bleach mix and go back into some of the areas and mist them to see if they lighten/fade out more to simulate sun/weather exposure or wear patterns. Usually around the knees, waist, seat (and arms/cuff if there are any).

I'll let it dry outside, and then re wash it, and let it air dry and assess if it needs anything else.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
On the flannel shirts I got at Goodwill, I dipped them in a bucket of light bleach and then went back and let them soak in a bucket of dark tea. Now for the last 4 weeks they have been baking in the sun hanging off the back porch. Those look epic right now.
 

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Typical Ghoul Next Door
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For that look, the only thing I'd add to my original advice above is to maybe wash it with some bleach during the washing cycle. But only if the overalls you get are REALLY dark and you think it won't work at all (but even dark overalls likely would be fine if you run them through the wash a few times on hot, maybe with a small amount of bleach). Just remember that bleach and color strippers can have really dramatic results if you're not careful.

Bleach advice that sounds decent: If you’ve tried washing your jeans in hot water to not avail, you can lighten them using bleach. This is done by adding 1/2 cup of bleach to your washing machine load, placing the jeans inside and allowing them to soak for about 20 minutes. Next, go ahead and drain the water from your washing machine. When you are finished, re-wash your jeans using cold water (no bleach this time). You may then dry your jeans and check the color. Hopefully, they’ll come out nice and light. It’s important to make sure the bleach is thoroughly mixed into the water before adding your jeans. If pure, undiluted bleach reaches your jeans, it’s likely to cause permanent damage rather than a lighter tone. This problem is easily avoided, however, as long as you dilute your bleach in water before placing the jeans inside.

Alternatively, RIT makes a color stripper/remover that might be a bit safer to the fabric, but I haven't ever used it before.
Good tutorial here. Seems like this may work for you as you can do it in a bathtub and could use the RIT in a bucket with a sponge and rub it over the areas you'd like to fade (unless you'd just like it overall lighter, in which case I'd just follow instructions to do the whole thing).

After you get it faded the way you want, distress it lightly with the sandpaper/drill bit attachment (whatever works for you if you want some distressing) then you can then use the acrylic paints (I'd do a red for blood, and maybe a dark brown for general age/stains around the cuffs and a few splatters).

I'd likely get the acrylic paint mixed up in some separate spray bottles, diluted enough to be able to spray, get the whole thing damp (dip it in water then wring out so it's still wet but not dripping) then use the color sprays to add in the blood/staining. The fabric being damp when adding the color will help it to spread and look more realistic after it dries. Take some breaks, step back and see how it's looking and keep building up until it looks nice enough. Then let it dry completely (give it a day or two, then see if you like it or it needs another round. Should be safe to wash on gentle going forward at that point and light tumble dry. Colors might fade out over time, but acrylic paints should have decent staying power through many washes.
 

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if they are denim overalls like Jasons in Friday prt 2 its easy, you start by washing them with alot of fabric softener, after that wash them with bleach in the machine a few times.
Put them in the dryer with some new tennis balls or those plastic dryer balls on the hottest settting.

That will fade the fabric and loosen the fibres. For the actual weathering use 100-150 grit sandpaper on the knees,chest,seams/cuffs.
For bigger rips and holes you can use a serrated steak knife, and then a wirebrush to fray the edges.
When your happy with the damage, wash it again with softener to fray all your weathering
 

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black light queen
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don't know if you'll have enough time, but burying them in dirt does wonders as well ... don't leave them too long or they'll disintegrate ... been there, done that :-( D'OH!

you can experiment with some of the excellent suggestions above ... more than one way to skin a cat

amk
 
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