How to Remove Studs & Rivets From Jeans

by Melissa J. Bell

Rivets and studs can become damaged and may need removal.

blue jeans image by Albert Lozano from

Rivets and studs are a type of metal fastening used in many different projects, such as joining pieces of metal. Due to their strength, rivets and studs also are used to fasten layers of denim in high-stress areas of a denim garment that may be too thick for simple thread to handle. These fastenings usually are placed on pocket corners and waistband seams, but also can hold together other seams. If a rivet or stud becomes damaged and needs replacing, or if you dislike the original placement, you may need to remove them from your pair of jeans.

Items you will need

  • Jeans
  • Chisel
  • Mallet
  • Scissors
  • Drill
Step 1

Lay the pair of jeans out on a table, with the back side of the rivet or the front side of the stud you need to remove facing upward. Pull the fabric slightly away from the rivet or stud, then wedge a chisel underneath it.

Step 2

Tap the chisel handle gently with a mallet. If the rivet or stud does not begin to loosen, tap again more firmly.

Step 3

Grasp the top side of the rivet or stud with your pliers. If you needed to remove studs only, pull on the stud until it separates from the fabric. If it does not separate, you may need to clip the fabric carefully around the stud with a pair of scissors until you can work the stud out of the jeans. Skip the following steps if you do not need to remove rivets.

Step 4

Pull on the top side of the rivet with the pliers until it separates from the back side.

Step 5

Pull both pieces of the rivet out of the fabric. If they do not come away cleanly, fit a drill with a bit that is slightly smaller than the rivet shaft. Drill straight through the top of the rivet, until the pieces come apart.


  • "Fugitive Denim;" Rachel Louise Snyder; 2008.
  • "Basic Bench-Metal Practice and Precision;" Joseph William Giachino and John Louis Feirer; 1943.
  • "Metalworking Handbook: Principles and Procedures;" Jeannette T. Adams; 1976.

Photo Credits

About the Author

A writer with a Bachelor of Science in English and secondary education, but also an interest in all things beautiful, Melissa J. Bell has handed out beauty and fashion advice since she could talk -- and for the last six years, write for online publications like Daily Glow and SheBudgets.