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How to patch your down jacket

Textile waste is a huge problem both internationally and within Australia. As a country us Aussies purchase an average of 27 kg of new clothing and dispose of an average of 23 kgs of clothing to landfill each year! According to PlanetArk, this makes us the second highest consumer of textiles in the world following the US. To flatten the curve its time to learn some new skills, to make do and mend.

Top Tip: Before you start check that your jacket isn’t covered under warranty by emailing us at warranties@rhythm.net.au. Our customer service team can guide you through the best options for you.

Step One:

Clean the area that needs to be patched using isopropyl alcohol and a clean cotton rag, lightly dab around the entire area to make sure it is completely free of dirt. Allow the area to dry completely.

Step Three:

Apply jacket repair tape Select a reliable outerwear repair tape (eg. Tenacious Tape) and carefully cut out a piece to cover the hole. Note that the patch should be larger than the hole in the jacket by at least 12mm (1/2") on all sides. Doublecheck the size and positioning of the tape before removing the backing and then press the tape onto the home with even pressure, working outward from the middle to eliminate air bubbles.

Step Five:

If you have access to a sewing machine, we recommend a straight stitch; if you are sewing by hand, we recommend a running backstitch. Once the patch is secure, remove all the pins and you’re all set.  

Step Two:

Remove any loose feathers Wrap a piece of masking tape (sticky side out) around your fingers and gently tap the torn area to remove any loose down feathers and give yourself a clean workspace.

Step Four:

Measure and cut the outer layer of Technical Fabric You can generally find ripstop fabric like Cordura at most fabric stores, and specialty retailers online should offer swatches of waterproof of fabrics like Gore-Tex. Measure out an area that covers the entire tape application. Note that the fabric should be larger than the initial tape by at least 25mm (1”) on all sides. Line up the patch where it should go, turn under each side of the patch about 9 1/2mm (3/8”) to strengthen the sewing area, and pin in place

Tips, Tricks and Links

Top Tip: Mend your jacket as soon as possible to minimize the loss of down feathers

Not confident with your sewing skills? 

This tutorial explains the step by step process of backstitching by hand! If you're nervous to start, we suggest having a quick practice on a scrap piece of fabric before mending your jacket.


Find out more about the fight against textile waste here.

Make do and mend articles and blog posts:

- Burton: DIY- How To Patch A Down Jacket At Home (Note: The information and steps listed in this blog post were taken from here)

- Patagonia: Product Care and Repair