Jeans have come a long way. Traditionally created in the 1870s (!) by Levi Strauss as a pair of sturdy workwear trousers, they have gone through numerous adaptions and reinventions in the past 140 years. For example, blue jeans were a sign of rebellion in the 50’s. The 60’s saw many more women wearing jeans, preferring flares and adorned with embellishments to reflect the hippy era. Despite the changes, one thing has remained the same throughout the decades, the jean is a sartorial staple.
The down side of denim is that they are pretty water intensive, the average pair takes roughly 3400 litres of water to make. It is also pretty difficult to find a good dependable pair. For these reason, I am very particular with my jeans. I personally have not been fortunate with secondhand jeans (they are always a strange fit on me) but as a long-lasting staple piece that I will probably wear for about 70% of the year, I feel a little more justified in buying a new pair.
At the moment, I am really loving the straight-leg jeans. I have one pair, which I found a couple of years ago at Tommy Hilfiger. They are slightly cropped (so I try to remember shave my legs one in a while) and look great with trainers, boots and smart shoes. I try not to wash them often at all (to both protect the denim and prevent microplastics) really only if I have spilled something on them which will not wipe off and even then on a very cool wash (30 degrees max). I look for a really good quality denim. I try to look for 100% organic cotton, and make sure they feel long-lasting, none of that stretchy material. I am sure you do not need me to tell you how to get the most out of your denim but here are a few tips have found really help I will try to post them on my Instagram too:
- Wear with trainers and embrace the sock; we are no longer living in the days of trainer socks (eughh) so take pride in your socks! I love a novelty sock (avocado, cats, nipples- throw em my way!) or a good old school sports sock.
- The French tuck. This is a look I cannot get enough off at the moment (and Anna told me was called the French tuck because she’s sophisticated and up-to-date). For those who don’t know, tuck in the front of your t-shirt and leave the back untucked, and voila ( I know groundbreaking but give it a go).
- The bottom-hider. I have rather a large rump, something I am very proud of but something that does not always look fab in my big old “mom jeans”. To combat this, i wear a shirt or t-shirt tucked in with a cardigan creating quite a nice layered effect. This helps me avoid the long-bottom look I sometimes get in high-waited jeans.
- Balance the outfit. If your jeans are stonewashed and generally look a bit more casual and you want to wear them to something a bit more formal, balance them out with a nice top or jumper or a fancy pair of mules. I love wearing my jeans with a cropped high neck jumper to work.
- Buckle up. Wearing a belt can break up your outfit and give your jeans a much more styled look, give it a go!