Getting To Work: Jeans Jeans and Jeans

There isn’t much that’s bad about having a big closet.  I do, as does Mrs. RCS, but the problem is that with so much real estate, there’s room to ‘fill’.

On the subject of jeans, it’s definitely possible to have too many (see below), but it’s also inconvenient to have just one or two pairs.  I’m not one of those guys who can wear the same pair of jeans for a year or so without washing.  I have friends.  I’m social.  I live in the South, where 95 degree humid days don’t play well with denim.  There should be a variety, which I’m currently missing.  I like a couple pairs of dark, selvedge ‘dress’ jeans, a couple pairs of 501s that go with loafers, and a longer pair for boots, then maybe a couple pairs of fillers.  Not too many, not too few…just right.

I usually do a purge a year, and I recently went through my jeans.  I was surprised at how the stockpile had, well, started to pile up:

Most of these jeans are essentially new.  As in ‘never worn’ new.  I have a few that are in the rotation, but need to reassess.  Most of these jeans I find on sale or use some sort of store credit, and when they come, they get added to the stack.  That stack that has the ‘yeah, I’ll get to it’ mental sign.  At this point, the stack is too big.  Time to get to work.

Here are the details on the stack(s): On the left, I’ve got a some Naked and Famous selvedge, Telleson X Huckberry selvedge, Locksicker selvedge, and a pair of raw Levis 501 STF jeans.

Here on the right are the more ‘washed’ look.  I’ve got a couple pairs of 501s, and some J. Crew jeans.

I’d also like to focus on some processes that prevent, or at least minimize, bleeding denim.  I get it, but it’s annoying.  It’s what I call a ‘magazine look’.  The dark denim looks great in a magazine, but it doesn’t translate to real life.  That indigo bleeds onto everything.  There are a couple processes I’m going to use to get the desired results.

First, ACL’s Michael Williams’ process he did for Mr. Porter:


I’ll also be using the TBTYH Levi’s STF process.  I’ve done this a couple times, and feel comfortable with this.  Here are the details on a pair I did a while back:

I’ll keep you in the loop as to how it goes.  The reality is that I look at most of these as a sunk cost.  If I screw them up, no big deal, since they have been sitting in a stack for so long.  Any other secrets I should know about?  Let’s hear it…



  1. WS
    07/29/2016 / 9:17 AM

    You touched on it. Biggest frustration in the denim world is having the loafer pile and the boot pile. No way around it.

  2. WGU
    07/29/2016 / 11:21 AM

    Pretty good article. After being a loyalist to them for years, I quit buying 501’s a little over a year ago due to the quality slip Levi’s began to make. I haven’t tried the STF 501’s. With your pairs, is the quality better?

    I now have a few pairs of Raleigh Denim and they’ve definitely earned a lifetime customer. Great jeans and a really cool company that’s proud to be from the south. Even has their denim made by a local cotton mill. Check them out when you get the chance.

  3. BDP
    07/29/2016 / 12:39 PM

    Is there a Raleigh style that fits similar to the 501?

    • WGU
      07/29/2016 / 4:49 PM

      The “Jones” cut has been the one I’ve stuck with and they seem to be the closest to the 501’s. I have thicker legs than most, and although they say it’s a “thin” cut, they fit great once they form to you after A good break in period. I have three pairs and I’ve been very pleased with all of them. In my opinion, the craftsmanship is unparalleled for today’s denim market. Not only that, but they’re made in the South from cotton start to handmade jean finish.

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