Consumer Reports wrote a great little article comparing high end denim to their cheaper counterparts. Including the big two – 7 For All Mankind and True Religion – as their expensive choices, Gap, Levi’s and Lucky Brand as mid-range and Old Navy and the lower end Levi Strauss & Co Signature Line, they went through the stretch, fit and styles of each pair.
Check out the review and see if you’re surprised by what they found!
Marketers might deserve a special place in hell for turning blue jeans into a luxury item. But is there any real difference between a $20 pair and a $240 pair? Our textiles expert evaluated seven women’s cotton/spandex boot-cut jeans in that price range, looking for sewing and fabric flaws, washing one pair of each five times, opening stitching at the waist to examine construction, and checking zippers. She found:
Some of the less expensive jeans have better construction features, such as interfacing under the waistband. The two cheapest jeans have stitching under the waistband to limit stretching.
Midpriced Lucky was the only pair that didn’t shrink at all. (However, it was so “distressed” that you could lose change from a holey back pocket.)
The biggest shrinkers would have lost about an inch in width on a 40-inch hip and almost an inch in length on a 30-inch inseam.
With the $240 True Religion jeans, you get silver bling (on back pockets and, for some reason, hiding inside a front pocket), a nice print fabric for the pocket bags (where it can’t be seen), big white stitches as an accent, and a zipper that won’t stay up unless it’s locked down.
You pay a lot for fashion and hidden details. Buy what pleases you.
Want to see the details of each pair?
I think that one of the biggest issues was the pairs they chose to review. When you grab a pair of super distressed jeans – like the Lucky Jeans they chose – they will be DISTRESSED. I would have preferred that they chose to compare:
1. Old Navy
2. Lee/Wrangler (something like that)
5. Lucky Brand (a non-distressed style)
6. Anoname (at $110)
7. DL1961 (at $150)
8. 7 For All Mankind (at approx. $160)
9. Current/Elliott (at $220)
10. True Religion (at $240)
I think this would be a better test of quality increasing at price points.
What about you… how do you feel about this review, and what – if anything – would you change about it?