of a certain vintage
A few months ago, I bought a pair of vintage Levi's online on impulse. Okay they're not that old, certainly not pre-1970s, but I'm pretty sure Levi's doesn't make them quite like this any more - they're in the kind of thick, sturdy denim now extinct in the mass market, plus they have the kind of high rise and button-fly I rarely see on women's jeans. They remind me of a pair of old Levi's my sister had in the 90s', which is perfect since I had an early 90s' childhood and a late 90s' adolescence, and am a long-time fan of Thelma and Louise and their high-waisted badassery.
I know classic 501s look terrible on me, so I bought these with the aim of bringing them to my tailor - I wanted the relatively high waist (just around my belly button), the button-fly (I love ripping the buttons, hah) and tight fit around the butt and thighs, and so long as these bits fit well, the rest is easy.
It's not unusual for me to buy secondhand jeans or jeans on a deep discount with the aim of getting them drastically tailored - most of my old Diesel jeans are altered because when I worked there, it was the era of bootcut jeans and I don't like bootcuts. My "boyfriend" jeans are all jeans bought a size bigger and then taken in at the hip to fit. I read this quote on Jean Stories - "When you purchase jeans, you want them to fit comfortably over your largest body part (be that your thigh, waist, or hip) and everything else can be shaped to your liking" - and I understood perfectly.
I lucked out because these ones did fit perfectly at the waist, hips, and thighs, never mind that it was frumpy as hell from knees down. My tailor easily took care of that and gave me the tapered fit I wanted. He also cropped it a little more so that it hung above my ankles, which I find to me the most flattering length for me, and also quite practical - no wet hems in the rain.
For alterations inspiration, I found some good ideas on RE/DONE, which offers a fairly decent, albeit expensive preposition for those who don't want to hunt for old Levi's and get them tailored themselves: they source and alter vintage pairs in several cuts. They've become quite a thing, and even if one doesn't need to go to such expense to achieve the same thing, I can get behind something that at least makes good use of unwanted clothing.
I was actually motivated to write this post after I saw comments on a post on A Cup of Jo on the non-stretchy jean trend, and I was fascinated by how some people hate them - many swore they would never go back to the discomfort of non-stretchy jeans. I'm not averse to stretch, but I am definitely on the other side of the fence - the stiffness of old-fashioned denim looks better on me and because most of my jeans are non-stretch anyway, I'm used to them and I don't feel uncomfortable at all.
But what does everyone else think? A ridiculous trend or the revival of a good idea?