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Why is it that jeans always seem to be cut for teenagers with spindly legs? No matter where I look, I can’t find jeans (well-made jeans, anyway) that can accommodate my chunkier-than-19-year-old thighs. Sure, there might be a shapeless bootcut pair here or there on the fringes of a high street collection, but finding flattering denim with a modern fit has proven to be a tricky task.
My joy was unbridled then, when a few weeks ago, I dropped into Drakes’ Savile Row flagship store (it’s one of my favorite stores in London—and when it’s open, it’s worth stopping by to see what’s new) and tried on Drakes’ selvedge denim five-pocket jeans on a whim. Boy, am I glad that I did.
Principally, these jeans are clever because they combine the proportions of a tailored trouser with jeans’ signature five-pocket silhouette. They’re cut with a high rise, to sit above (not around) the hips, which gives them a slightly smarter look than you’d expect, perfect for pairing with a chambray shirt and sport coat. They also feature unique slanted pockets (so you can actually get your hands into them) and a little more room than is conventional in the thigh and the calf, while still tapering gently through the leg. The result is a pair of sleek-looking jeans that even I can get myself into—perfect finished with chunky rolled-up hems.
Currently, said jeans are available in three different fabrics. There’s a relatively lightweight 12.5oz selvedge denim pair, which is suited to the warmer months. Then, there’s a pair in ecru denim that lend a 1950s Mr. Ripley vibe to a smart-casual look with a navy blazer. Completing the trio is the pair that I own: the 14.6oz Indigo Selvedge Denim Five-Pocket Jeans. These are the ones to go for – weighty, hearty and comfortable all at once.
I’ve washed my pair half-a-dozen times now, and they’re just starting to soften and fade around the seams for that lived-in look that suits good quality Japanese selvedge. Finally, it seems I’ve found some jeans that are worth investing in. And maybe, just maybe, I can class myself a ‘denim head’ after all.