Do you remember when jeans took four wears after a wash to be slip in comfortable? The percentage of cotton was almost 100% and elastane was not even considered. Jeans were sturdy, high-waisted and hid a multitude of imperfections. Jump forward 30 years (gulp!) and jeans have become so enriched with other materials, such as elastane, that they now fit all the curves and hide nothing. The skinny jean has dominated our existence for at least 10 years, but that is changing.
Over the past two European summers, there has been a change in the air and the skinny jean (and its cousin – the jegging), with its figure-hugging fabric and high percentage of elastane, is having a break. The older styles – like the coveted Levis 501 when I was a teen, are back.
Think high-waisted, at minimum straight-legged, proper denim jeans. Elastane content should be reduced and cotton increased. Jeans are wider, less structured about the leg, and a whole lot more flattering.
The different washes we had in the 80s and 90s are back – including acid wash! Some companies are using lasers rather than acids to destress jeans, and others are creating patchwork jeans by using offcuts of denim and creative construction.
In a more earth-friendly fashion era, jean production is changing and with it the return to more sustainable materials and new processing methods. Jeans are more inclusive in their new (return of the old) shapes and cuts. So, if you can still fit into the jeans you saved up for in the 90s, dust them off – they are back in style!
If not, there are plenty to choose from in the new season offerings. Have fun with this flashback fashion piece!