folded, raw, selvedge denim

folded, broken in, worn, selvedge denim

This is the exact same pair of jeans. I made these three years ago this January. While I don’t wear them everyday, and almost never wear them during the warmer months in Tennessee (June – October), these are my main go-to pair of jeans. The denim, which is a 12.5 oz, 100% cotton, blue line selvedge denim from Cone Mills, was very stiff and unforgiving┬áto begin with, but once it broke in, transformed into an amazingly soft and comfortable fabric.

raw selvedge denim front

worn, broken in, selvedge denim front

I love seeing the progression from “clean slate” unwashed raw denim to something more personal that reflects a little bit about who I am. Denim and other indigo dyed fabrics are special in this regard. When cared for properly, they take on a life of their own and become more beautiful over time.

raw, selvedge denim back

worn, broken in selvedge denim back

One of my goals with learning how to make clothing is to try and create garments that last. I am much more interested in “timeless” (at least in my lifetime) menswear basics than I am fashion trends. While some may argue that raw denim has been in the spotlight for the last decade or so, I’d point out that this denim was woven on antique looms that date back to the 1940’s, in a plant that started operations in 1905 in North Carolina, long before the current trend started.

For me, the focus is on a quality American made fabric in its purist form, and a garment made in a way that stands up to the test of time, rather than any trend or particular movement (i.e. heritage) in the fashion industry.

selvedge denim coin pocket

broken in, worn, selvedge denim coin pocket

So far I haven’t had to make any repairs, but may need to reinforce the edge of the front pockets where contact with my wedding ring and keys are starting to fray the pocket lining. Hopefully these have a few more years of service in them.

Here is to a new year, and to making things with a purpose.