Behold: The Perfect Pair of Jeans

Murray Clark
·3-min read
Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

From Esquire

For someone who spends an inordinate amount of time talking and writing about clothes, I hate trying them on. Changing rooms are miserable places. They're pokey, and the curtain never reaches across the rail, and I'm stood sideways, trying to button-up a shirt, terrified, and self-inflated enough to think that a passer-by might steal a glance at my thoroughly average frame. It's not just the shops I'm frequenting, either. I think all changing rooms are shit. Worse, they're a No Man's Land when shopping for something boring. Like jeans.

Photo credit: Raymond Hall
Photo credit: Raymond Hall

I'm not going put myself through the indignity of a small box that gives me the star-studded glow of Christian Bale in The Machinist just to get something as pedestrian as a pair of jeans. It's like trying on a plain white T-shirt, or socks. You need them. You appreciate them. But you don't get excited by them. Not really. Thus, my obstinacy has proven a tall obstacle to some really great denim. I've just gone for Dickies instead.

No longer. In the midst of filming for the new Gossip Girl – a reboot to the Noughties TV series that encouraged young teens to behave like noxious Upper East Side sociopaths – one of its leads, Thomas Doherty, was pictured in the jeans I've always wanted but could never find. They're not skinny (please), and they're not straight leg either. But for all the boxiness, it's not totally lost wide-leg territory – which I'm not averse to, by the way. But in jeans, I want a shape that'll last.

No. These get it just right. The colour, too. Classic dark blue is classic for a reason, but I prefer my jeans to be a touch lighter; denim that's Saved By The Bell. For that reason, stonewash has always been a go-to. It doesn't compete with brighter colours, and it's an unguent for pastels, which men understandably (and wrongly) fear. Sorbet yellows and candy floss pinks and dentist mint green can seem daunting alone. But over a pair of loose stonewash jeans (and white socks, and white Reebok Classics), everything seems much easier – even if a bit Live & Kicking presenter circa '95.

With vigour, my quest for the perfect denim begins anew. The endless pigeon holes of cut, length, waist and colour can seem exhausting (reader: it is), as is the task of rooting through it all (reader: it really is). Knowing exactly what you're looking for however eliminates at least 40 minutes of agony. I can now pinpoint the right pair. I know the brands that'll stock such a pair, like Levi's and Wrangler. And do you know what: I might even try them on first.



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