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Finding Your Perfect Raw Selvedge Denim Jeans: What Denim Weight is Right for You?

Let’s take a look at what weight of denim will be right for your lifestyle!

Deciding on a denim weight is a balancing act between lifestyle, fit, geographical location, experience and expectation.

So let’s break these down.

Your Lifestyle Plays an Important Part.

You have to ask yourself:

“how much time to I spend in my jeans and doing what kind of activity?”

I will take myself to give you an example. Because of the industry I work in and the fact my bosses are cool. I could, in theory, spend 100% of my awake time in jeans. I would say the average is 80%. To get back and forward to said work and almost all other doings and happenings around town I am on my bike, a bicycle that is. Speaking of around town, I live in Berlin. I am not out on a farm or in the mountains hiking around.

So I will be looking for denim that is durable enough to spend a lot of time in. I will be looking for a weight of denim that gives a good amount of movement for getting around on a bike. This means around the 14oz mark.

The Weight of Your Jeans Will Have an Influence on Your Chosen Fit.

As much your body type should give you a good indication as to the fit you’ll be looking at. There are some weights of denim that are more suited to certain fits just for practicality and wear-ability sake

I kinda look at it like this.

If we have slim to baggy on one axis, and light to heavy on the other. We can draw a linear progression. So if we want a medium weight. Say 14oz we would be looking for a slim to regular fit. If we wanted a 32oz monster. We would be looking for a much roomier fit.

Again, if I take myself as an example. I am a chubby mesomorph and will be looking towards a slim to regular, tapered jean. It suits my body type. Allows movement and I won’t have the end of my jeans flapping about and getting caught in my chain when on the bike. I will need a weight of denim that will be comfortable for this fit. Again, around the 14oz mark.

Where you live will have a big impact on the Weight of Denim!

This is a pretty simple one…

  • Hot weather. Heavy denim, uncomfortable.
  • Cold Weather. Light denim, too cold!

Here in Berlin, we see temperatures ranging from -15 to +35. There is no one denim that can cover all these, certainly. But I find a medium weight denim can comfortable accommodate me for 80% of the year. Maybe more. Again, around the 14oz mark.

This is just common sense guys!

TL:DR. Click now to watch the video

 Experience goes a long way in your choice of Denim Weight.

Stepping into a pair of raw denim jean for the first time is an entirely different thing from what you are used to. Some have said it is downright uncomfortable. Others say it is a transcendent, visceral experience.

With time and experience you will know that you will be richly rewarded for your short period of discomfort but if you go for a 32oz monster right from the start, you might end up throwing in the towel after the first few days. You wont know if the blue on your legs is from indigo bleed or from bruising.

If you are new to this game, I would strongly advise going for the lighter side of things. The fade potential is there and the reality of you putting in the time to achieve said fades is far higher.

As for me, yeah I have a fair amount of experience in breaking in jeans. And this experience has taught me that the heavier denim is just not my thing. I find that the medium weight 14 or 15oz is a perfect balance between durability and wear-ability.

Expectation can mean that the above is null and void

This is where all of the above can just go out the window…. And maybe it should!

What if you want that downright sick fade afforded by that heavy denim. But you live in Indonesia. Well, you will just have to suck it up and take it.

I mention Indonesia because some of the most amazing fades I’ve seen in the last couple of years hail from there. It is something about the hot weather and the humidity. It just fades denim to perfection. Hats off to the brave folks rocking a 22oz in 35-degree heat with 99% humidity. You deserve those fades!

Dat’s It For Denim Weight Folks!

So, that’s the BULK (sorry, one final pun) of the issues about denim weight covered. It’s a big subject and needs a little time to get your head around…. but it’s worth taking the time like all aspects of getting that perfect pair of jeans.

Next Up. Size!

Next up, we will be looking into that tricky subject of getting the right size of jeans. Now, I just want to make one thing CLEAR! Fit and Size are two TOTALLY different things. You’ll find out exactly what I mean in the next Vlog.

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Editorial | Marc