I’ll be the first to admit that jean shopping gets a bit stressful; my own recent shopping experience searching for the perfect fit inspired me to put together this shopping checklist.
Now let’s speak another truth; gentlemen our denim is far better than what ladies have to choose from right now. It’s strong’, it’s raw, and it’s meant to get dirty. It even has some decent stretch for an alluring posterior. Now for a quick crash course in denim fabrication…. here we go:
•Sledge– this kind of denim is pretty old school and if you can find it, snap it up. Sledge refers to the fabric “self-edge” where the garment is cut up to the natural finished edge of the material it’s coming from. This is not only a trademark for quality dungarees, but from a technical standpoint, it ensures your jeans are cut properly. The only disadvantage to this bad boy; no stretch. It’s old school denim because it’s made from one continual cotton thread on a shuttle-and-pass style loom (think grandma-style weaving loom).
When these looms were eventually replaced with projectile looms, we saw the birth of thread blends cotton/elastin (there’s your stretch). A good rule of thumb for stretch denim is 2% stretch ratio. Anything more than that you’ll risk leaving the store with a “jegging”
•Raw– raw denim is simple denim that has been dyed but not washed. So, make sure you’ve got a bit of extra length on them because those beauties are going to shrink.
There are two types of dying: indigo dye and sulphur dye. Indigo, all depending on how many dips are involved gives a light to intense blue-black. Sulphur dying gives you your colours. Be careful when you wash an indigo dye denim garment, it will stain your clothing.
Tip: White jeans are totally acceptable in summer. Pair them with a denim or chambray shirt in the hot months.
DEVIL’S IN THE DETAILS:
Keep the traffic to a minimum; whiskers are for cats not gentlemen. Whiskers are the lines across the lap of your of your jeans, kind of near the zip. Unless they’re naturally worn in, they’ll make your crotch look weird. Dude, just pass. If it’s not an option, make sure they’re slight.
THE PERFECT FIT:
Just because you’re bigger doesn’t mean you need wider jeans. Don’t be afraid to wear a slimmer jean. Reducing some of the bulk fabric with a well-tailored trouser, even if it’s a jean, produces a longer, leaner silhouette that is more chic and less frumpy. Take note slim dudes; wider jeans only make you look skinnier. Complement your frame with something that fits you well.
This will sound weird, but trust me it’s the truth; the only way to take care of your denim is to not take care of your denim. For the love of all that is good in this world, DO NOT let your girlfriend put your jeans in the washer and dryer on a regular basis. Just let your denim hang out, water and agitation of detergent abrasives deteriorates the fiber.
Air them out if they need it, or stick them in the freezer over night to diminish any unpleasant odour. I do my denim twice a month at most, and for denim purists that’s really pushing it. Allow them to get dirty, and when you absolutely have to, turn them inside out, gentle hand wash and hang them to dry.
That’s it for now, take a deep breath, stick to the checklist and remember it’s just jeans. If they make you feel good (and your butt look good), then that’s the pair for you.