Feb 16, 2013

Are There Any Good Sources for Affordable Selvedge or Raw Denim Jeans?

created at: 02/19/2013

Though the quality and integrity of handmade selvedge jeans made of raw denim is apparent to anyone who actually owns a pair, their steep initial investment price can hold many of us back. Including...me. I've got my eyes on a few different styles from a variety of makers, but that initial $250-350 can bea pretty big bullet to bite, especially when I have at least one pair of jeans that I like, which, though they're not gonna last much more than a few years, aren't worn out yet. 

Thankfully, there are a few affordable options, or, at least more affordable, available right now.  Grant Harris writes for Primer, one of my favorite men's blogs:

Ahh, the great denim dilemma. Where to find high quality selvedge/raw/dry– the stuff that feels like cardboard at first but will wear in and mold to your body quite nicely over time–at bargain prices.... In that case you may find it difficult to find a good pair made of the best denim (usually from Japan) at less than $250. Many options go for over $300 and [some] will run you over $500.  Fear not my friend.  There are plenty of options for the sub $250 market and we’re here to explore them. 

Grant then provides five non-paycheck-busting options, several of which are sub-$100. Check it out at Primer - Style Q&A: Affordable Raw or Selvedge Jeans 

And then, once you've snagged a pair, be sure you know what you should never do to good jeans

[Top image: Rawrdenim





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Anonymous on Apr 06, 2016:

Prison Blues jeans. USA made supporting inmates learning job skills. Best jeans I've found as a guy who works in a weld shop and cuts trees as a hobby. Check them out.

Luke on Feb 26, 2013:

I just recently jumped on the raw denim bandwagon and have had two pairs of Levi's 501 Shrink-to-fit jeans in the last two years. I must say I've been IMMENSELY satisfied. My thighs and calves have gotten thick while my waist has slimmed due to a daily bicycle commute. Until I found shrink-to-fit, I thought they didn't make pants for people my shape. They're classy enough to wear with a blazer or a t-shirt.

Follow the sizing guide on their website to get a good fit. Take a tepid bath with your jeans on and a few hours later you'll have a pair to wear every day. Subscribe to Levi's email newsletter and you'll find they're often on sale 30-40% off with free shipping. 

I plan on buying a new pair every year or two. $25-50/year in pants sounds like a great deal to me!