Without getting overly emotional about it all, the humble blue jeans are a bonafide, genuine classic. Hard-wearing, long lasting and maybe more importantly, good looking; every dapper dresser needs a good set of denims. In-keeping with our current denim competitions, we thought we’d take a tour through the hallowed halls of the Oi Polloi denim warehouse to show you what we’ve got on offer. Be warned, this may take a while, so pour some tea into that selvage denim mug of yours, put ‘Forever in Blue Jeans’ on repeat and let these words carry you gently into the world of denim…
Seeing as they came up with the whole idea of denim waist overalls (or jeans, as they’re sometimes known), it’s only right that we start with Levi’s. Nearly 140 years since they first received their patent to make riveted denim work-pants, they’re still making some great jeans, offering selvage denim (as in self-edge, a weave process that stops edges fraying) and a great fit at great prices. And for the denim purists out there we’ve just received some of the best red tab we’ve had.
On a similar tip, Lee jeans are one of those brands who’ve been around for a while (123 years if you’ve been counting) and still focus on the good stuff. Having started out in Kansas making denim dungarees, overalls and loco jackets (loco as in locomotive, not crazy) they soon started selling jeans to meet the demand from the local cowboys. Their 101 jeans are a firm shop favourite, pretty much the same since 1926; they’re a great slim fit and look great after a bit of wear and tear.
Preceding the whole ‘Japanese take on western work-wear classics’ thing by about 50 years, Edwin was started by a mysterious man named Mr Tsunemi who became obsessed with the jeans that the US soldiers were wearing in Japan. He quickly began importing old jeans into Japan which he then repaired and sold on, before starting Edwin in 1961. Offering a whole spectrum of styles, from loose and baggy to super slim, Edwin have something for everyone. A particular favourite are their Nashville jeans, a nice and roomy pair of jeans made from super-heavy 14oz denim.
Still wet behind the ears compared to most jeans brands, Nudie Jeans started out in 2001 by a crack-team of Swedish ex-Lee employees looking to go it alone in the cutthroat world of denim manufacture. Considering every part of the jean-making process, from transport (Nudie Jeans are transported by train from their specially selected factories in Italy) to the farms they use for their cotton (all complying with fair-trade guidelines), Nudie Jeans are the jeans of choice for the earth-conscious denim fan.
Another European brand that have quickly risen up the denim ranks are A.P.C. Designed in France by the ironically named Jean Toutou, A.P.C. take a minimal, cut-back approach to jean design. Using high-quality Japanese selvage denim with slim cuts and no branding, A.P.C. jeans are a good choice for smarter occasions, like meeting the girlfriend’s folks or appearing in a local newspaper.
For the patriotic amongst you, we also stock some denim made on English soil courtesy of Albam and Big E. Made in England using some high-class Japanese selvage denim, Albam make no nonsense jeans at great prices. For the final brand in this whirlwind walk through the world of denim, we’ve gone full circle to the denim revisionists at Big E. With their name seemingly being a hilarious denim in-joke (pre 1971 Levi’s jeans had a upper case E on the rear tab, so are known as Big E), Big E make their jeans on original shuttle looms, use solid copper rivets and base all their jeans on original pieces from the vast annuls of denim history.
So there you have it, the Oi Polloi denim break-down, while we are on the subject, do yourself a favour and enter our denim competitions for a chance to win a brand new pair of jeans of your choice.