What style of jeans should you be wearing and when?
The topic of jeans is an interesting one. At what point in life do you need to move towards a more civilised pair of jeans?
I might have to contest that the only place for a pair of rugged pair is rocking around the house, or doing the gardening.
Unless you're a member of Faith, they should always be as dark as possible and plain in colour (Think: No hint of fading or fraying) and a slim cut - No matter your size, a slimmer cut pair of jeans will always make your pins look more fabulous.
I created my hybrid version of jeans i.e: a jean /chino style thus why they're called 'SanFran jeano' to fill the gap between 'too casual' and 'too formal'. They can be worn with a casual shirt alone, just as much as they can with a sports jacket and shirt.
Here's what my customer John said of his pairs:
"I’ve worn these jeans in all settings from the office to gardening and even on the Orient Express (Pre lockdown one). They have been adaptable, exceptionally light and great to transition from day time to evening."
(Above is our guide to the ideal smart jeans)
Why jeans are a man's wardrobe staple
Far from their roots as hard-working trousers for American farmers, jeans have become a men’s wardrobe staple. They’re the ideal piece to dress up or down and are a must-have in your smart-casual arsenal (which is getting more of a workout than ever).
Jeans however, come in all shapes and shades, so it can be tricky to know what will suit both you and the occasion best. We’ve simplified matters in our easy-to-follow guide below.
Where can I wear jeans?
Jeans were originally made for workmen to stand the brutal daily grind. Today, this isn’t so much the case, however, they still very much have the ‘casual’ stamp firmly placed on their riveted denim pockets. Therefore, always err on the side of caution and refrain from ever wearing your jeans to a more formal setting such as a wedding, funeral or major work presentation in a corporate office. But I'm pretty sure I can be confident that you wouldn't.
But lunches, informal meetings, the cinema, lazy Sundays at the pub or casual evening meals – go for it!
What style of jeans should I choose?
If you’re a man over 40, you’ve most likely left your acid-wash denim WHAM days behind and are seeking something more sophisticated. Therefore, we recommend that you:
1. Choose a darker denim for your jeans for wearability
If in doubt, always choose a darker shade of denim. Deep, plain and no fuss is your aim. Jeans that are darker are far easier to pair with other items in your wardrobe, whether that’s your favourite knitwear or a sports jacket.
Need a pair of jeans that offer the perfect balance of not too smart, nor too casual? I’ve created three shades which work well for a variety of looks and occasions. Lightweight, comfortable and flattering, there's a reason why they sell out time and time again.
2. Choose a slimmer/tapered cut to flatter your figure
There are a startling number of shapes for jeans, from bootcut and flares to straight, skinny and relaxed. Shapeless jeans simply won’t cut it for a flattering, stylish look so we’re of the opinion that less fabric makes it easier to create a great smart/casual look. That said, unless you are incredibly tall and slim or creating a vintage look, we recommend steering clear of skin-tight or stove-pipe jeans.
Oh, and please stay away from rips and frays.
I don’t want a stiff pair of jeans, what style of denim should I choose?
Comfort is a huge factor when it comes to choosing jeans. With such a variety of denim, even within brands, it seems impossible to know what you’re getting. Our jeans weigh in at 0.88lb so are super light, while having enough substance to be durable.
What shoes should I wear with jeans?
The very versatility that makes jeans so popular also causes a footwear conundrum for a lot of men.
In the Winter we suggest a pair of sleek Chelsea boots. They’re easy to put on, go with practically any coat and work for the smart/casual look.
If you’re going for a more off-duty look any time of year, then we suggest a smart pair of trainers without visible logos. Barkers and Oliver Sweeney have some great options. Our suggestion is to steer away from athletically styled trainers, though – leave them for the gym.
Brogues are suitable for business-casual wear if your workplace has a less formal vibe. Just be sure to pair them with a shirt.
What details should I look for on jeans?
The most important details are the rivets and the seams. When you buy a new pair of jeans:
- Check to see that the stitching is firm, and there are no loose threads.
- Ensure that the top button is riveted in place rather than sewn for strength. This also goes for the fly if it’s a button-up style.
- Look for minimal decorative stitching on the back pockets. This isn't necessary and we think it draws attention to your rear end for the wrong reasons.
A final note on details: jeans look the best when the buttons and stitching are subtle in colour and finish. After all, you want the fantastic fit and shape to stand out, not your buttons!
How should I look after my jeans?
The joy of jeans is that they don’t need to be washed as frequently as many believe. Look after them well (i.e. don’t spill your curry on them) and you can simply spot clean with a damp sponge and hang or fold them ready to wear next time.
Jeans were made to be worn as a leisurely piece, so require less care than your suit. That means you can wash conventional jeans at 30-40 degrees, but they will shrink and then give again when they’re worn.
We do, however, advise that you dry clean Alexandra Wood jeans. You may think this is too much work, but our customers have confirmed that it hasn’t been a problem and they’ve worn their jeans happily without incident.
And there you have it – some no-nonsense information to help you choose the right pair of jeans. If you haven’t already, discover my range of super lightweight jeans that I have designed to flatter every shape and size.