Fashion, Lifestyle

Denim: What’s the big deal?

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By Andrew Deyes

So what is the big deal when it comes to denim?

Denim has been around for a few hundred years and a part of a staple of the capsule wardrobe since the turn of the century. The cotton jean has developed and progressed as different styles and genres push the boundaries with what we wear and how we wear it. With consumers buying more denim than ever, they are demanding more from their denim jeans. Levi’s released ‘Made of Progress’ allowing them to produce jeans ethically in regards to their water usage. H&M mirror this with H&M Conscious. Both programmes are about reducing the carbon footprint in relation to cotton within denim manufacture.

Denim apparel has always remained a ghost within the fashion industry – always there but never noticed. Until now.

Part of fashion is being fashionable and the cycles it goes through, and trying to keep up with it is like trying to win a race against Usain Bolt over the 100 metres. In the spring 2016, denim was all about the boyfriend cut which was baggy and forgave you if ate an extra slice of cake. Remember, the style was baggy and required little tailoring so did not require much more than a plain white t-shirt and an overcoat.

Naturally, as trends change, so did the cut of denim. So the hot trends to look out for this fall are un-done hems – look out for styles that included a frayed in Top Shop for women and River Island for men. Ripped jeans are still a massive cash cow for retailers as the style never seems to be fading away – most retailers stock a ripped jean of sorts.

According to figures gathered by a delivery service, people think that women over 53 should not be wearing denim. Why jeans? And why such a specific number? Jeans are seen to be universal and available for everyone from 1 to 100. This figure is all about picking on a demographic and not looking at the whole picture. Who should wear what and when is completely subjective to the individual wearing them. The big deal is that a piece of apparel that we all take for granted and wear is making headlines because of either the way it is produced or who is wearing it. Denim is all about sending the message, “Mess with me and I will mess with you,” as it is seen somewhat utilitarian within the industry as it comes in infinite varieties and styles as it clings to some bodies and hangs on others.

Denim discreetly shows that you are interested in fashion without screaming that you know how to be fashionable and you know how to work the threads. As I mentioned before denim is seen as a ghost on the concrete catwalks of the high street as people turn to it for their capsule wardrobe. As an industry, why do we need to narrow the market for the product but be essentially ageist towards the blue denim? It is all about wearing and working the cotton. The likes of Kristin Scott Thomas and Elle Macpherson, being 56 and 52 respectively, have been photographed recently wearing denim which nails down the fact that denim is for all.

Remember there are NO rules in fashion.


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Andrew Deyes

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