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Can someone explain to me what dry denim is?

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
I'm somewhat new to the whole "jean scene," and I have a lot of questions about the topic of dry denim. First, where do my Diesel 82M and 8AA washes rank on the dry denim coolness scale? Also, when it comes to Evisu... great brand, or the greatest?

Here's to hoping that this section helps a ton of people who couldn't find a more accurate and dedicated resource for all of their dry denim queries, me included!
post #2 of 27
Evisu is a thug brand. I only see lame gangstas wearing them.
post #3 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by gofakeyourself View Post
Evisu is a thug brand. I only see lame gangstas wearing them.
Speaking from a true american point of view.
post #4 of 27
Neither 82M nor 8AA is dry denim.

However, 8AA is still cool but not being dry I can't rank it on a "dry denim coolness scale" . I haven't seen 82M in person so I can't say how cool it is.

From Wikipedia:
Dry or raw denim, as opposed to washed denim, is a denim fabric that is not washed after being dyed during its production.
Most denim is washed after being crafted into an article of clothing in order to make it softer and to eliminate any shrinkage which could cause an item to not fit after the owner washes it. In addition to being washed, non-dry denim is sometimes artificially "distressed" to achieve a worn-in look.
Much of the appeal of dry denim lies in the fact that with time the fabric will fade in a manner similar to factory distressed denim. With dry denim, however, such fading is affected by the body of the person who wears the jeans and the activities of their daily life. This creates what many enthusiasts feel to be a more natural, unique look than pre-distressed denim.
To facilitate the natural distressing process, some wearers of dry denim will often abstain from washing their jeans for more than six months,[3] though it is not a necessity for fading.
Predominantly found in premium denim lines, dry denim represents a small niche in the overall market.
post #5 of 27
^^ Dude, you totally look like Troy Murphy.
post #6 of 27
haha I had to google who that is... had no idea...

I see a slight resemblance... just add 80 pounds and 11 inches
post #7 of 27
President Bush. Great or greatest president?
post #8 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tsukasa View Post
President Bush. Great or greatest president?
When, exactly, did you stop beating your wife?
post #9 of 27
I think the Wikipedia Definition of dry denim (which I actually edited - ha ha) needs some work.

It's only a recent phenomenon that people sought out dry denim for the specific purpose of building a worn-out distressed look. Once upon a time they were raw because they were no frills. That's it.
post #10 of 27
isn't all denim dry? why would someone wear wet pants?
post #11 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by gospastic View Post
isn't all denim dry? why would someone wear wet pants?
Good question. If you were on fire you'd probably want wet pants... but yeah. I don't know.
post #12 of 27
I have wondered the same thing...
post #13 of 27
this forum needs a "faq" already.
someone should get one going... but not me
post #14 of 27
^ a user on here is working on a DRY DENIM FAQ right now... i've been helping ^_^
post #15 of 27
yea I actually gave some of my own input as well
post #16 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hisma View Post
this forum needs a "faq" already.
someone should get one going... but not me
taken from elsewhere

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rev View Post
DENIM EDU and FAQ for the Denim Newb:
Feel free to PM me to add any info you think should be here, I'd like to keep updating this for everyone who is interested in dry denim to be able to read.

What is dry/raw/unwashed denim?
All those terms basically mean the same thing. Dry, raw, unwashed all mean denim that has been sewn together to make a jean and has not touched water. The indigo used to dye the thread is still on the jean unlike every other jean you see in the store that has been pre-washed or pre-distressed (ie. Abercrombie/Hollister) to look a certain way.

What is the F**king point?
The thing people seem to remember about dry denim is the "6 month rule," which is actually quite arbitrary. Dry denim is very stiff and when you wear it it will crease and fade according to your lifestyle ie. knee fades, crotch fades and tears, thigh fades, thigh creases, honeycombs behind the knees, whiskers etc. etc.
After a certain period of wear (ie. 6 months) you wash your jeans finally rinse the extra indigo off your jeans (not all of it mind you, but a good amount). The indigo will bleed out most out of all these creases and damage marks and less along the non-worn parts of the jean, which will create a great conrast and create a jean similar to the ones you see in stores already pre-distressed, except better. Much better, more unique, cooler and specific to you.

Really 6 months? Dude, won't that stink?
6 months is an arbitrary rule. My Nudie Even Stevens could have been washed around 4 months, but I didn't, and still haven't, and they're going on 9 months at this point. Wash them when it feels right, when you see really obvious creases and wear and all that. If you wear them once a week in 6 months you won't see shit. You wear them all week for 3 months you will probably see some great wear.
About the smell. I have never run into a smell in my dry denim, nor has anyone I know, but if you do, people say you can soak them in the bath filled with water, which will lose a bit of indigo but not a lot like in the washing machine. You can put them in the freeze or hang them outside, febreeze them etc. I have never really ran into anyone who has had this problem and I have worked in extreme heat with my dry denim and they don't smell at all.

Okay, I'm interested. What brands do I start with?
The gateway jean of dry denim is generally Nudies (www.nudiejeans.com). They have a variety of fits and casts. The most popular are probably Regular Ralf (Regular Alf) and Slim Jim. Ralf is a pretty normal fitting semi-bootcut jean while Slim Jims are what they sound like. Nudies have tons of fits for every body type.
After that people move on, perhaps to APC, (A.P.C.) generally the New Standards. These are a great jean but you must size down 2-3 sizes as these jeans will stretch like a motherfucker. The general rule for dry denim is buy the pair you can BARELY button on when you try them on, as they will stretch when you wear them!! THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT!!

From there it's up up and up, Samurai, Imperial, Flathead, Ironheart, Pure Blue Japan, Iron Army, Studio D'Artisan, Dior Homme etc. etc.

Denim Links

www.mynudies.com -- check out photos/forums
superfuture -- check out supertalk/denim, read stickies.
www.nudiejeans.com -- buy some nudies
CONTEXT CLOTHING -- buy jeans (1sttimer discount 25% off)
True Religion Jeans, Juicy Couture, Seven Jeans, Citizens of Humanity at Revolve Clothing -- buy some jeans

Common Dry Denim Terms
Sanforized vs. Unsanforized
Sanforized basically means pre-shrunk. The denim thread is shrunk before the jean is woven. Unsanforized means the opposite. If a pair of jeans is unsanforized you will have to soak them in the bath tub before you wear them to get a correct size. A good example of this are Levis 501 Shrink To Fit you can buy for like 30 bucks. If your normal size is 30x34 you will want to buy 31x36 or 32x37, soak them in the bathtub, let them dry, and then they will shrink down to your normal size. Every brand is different in the amount they shrink.

Stacking, Hemming and Inseams, Oh my!
Dry denim generally comes pretty long in the inseam (34/36/3 and a lot of people are wondering what the fuck to do with all the extra length! Well you have a few options. Hemming, which a tailor can do for you, which is generally not what most wearers like to do. Most people will stack, which means to take all the extra inseam fabric and push it down to your ankles, continuously, until the jean is soft enough and broken in enough that it all "stacks" there above your shoes. Only really practical for jeans that are slim or tapered.

Pictured - Dior 19cm Raws - (no idea how long worn, check the stacks at his ankles)



Selvege
Selvege denim is "higher quality" denim with red stitching in the inner seam down the leg. It is a jean woven continuously in a method that creates a "self edge" on every seam of the jean. This is how all jeans used to be made until new looms were invented that made jeans faster and cheaper. Now we have to pay extra for it. Selvedge can be more difficult to fade.

Pictured: Nudie - Regular Ralf Dry Selvage (washed after a year)



Japanese
Japanese denim. Very popular and high quality while not being selvege. Fades generally quite nicely and quickly and is very popular. For example, Dior dry denim Japan is much more popular than the Italian version of the same pant.

Pictured - Nudie - Slim Jim Dry Japan (2 years, washes ?)



Greycast
Greycast is very popular in Nudie jeans and has a different hue than your traditional indigo, more greyish/green. It's a personal taste thing, look at photos if you want to check out the differences online if you need help deciding.

Pictured - Nudie - Regular Ralf Dry Greycast (11 months, washed twice)



Dry Coated
Dry coated are almost like waxed jeans. I don't know what the coating is precisely but Nudie has some Thin Finn and Slim Jims in Dry Black Coated and they basically shine up like leather pants but from what I hear when you wash them the coating goes away and you have black jeans. They are pretty hip until that point though.

Pictured - Nudie - Thin Finn Dry Black Coated (Nudie booklet promo shot)



Organic
Duh, organic denim. Maybe organic dyed, it depends on the brand. Started in a similar look to Greycast, greenish tint, but has branched out since. For the "Green" conscious.

Pictured - Nudie - Even Steven Dry Organic (5 months)



Honeycombs

The accordion looking wear patterns behind your knee. Increased by wearing your jeans tight.



Whiskers
The wear around the top of your thighs by your zipper.



Soak vs Wash
Soaking a jean will result in indigo loss, but not like a wash. In a wash the detergent and the abrasions of the actual action of the wash will result in a lot of indigo loss. If you need to soak your jeans it's not that big of a deal, and don't freak out when the tub water turns blue. Soaking is generally used to remove massive amount of dirt or something without washing your pants, or to shrink your jeans.

Starching
Starching jeans is a method a lot of kids use to stiffen their jeans and increase the wear in the creases. Bad starch jobs are obvious, as most of the jean is unfaded while the honeycombs and whiskers are almost white in their abrasions. Frowned upon by most denimheads.

Rain and your jeans
Don't sweat it. Rain won't ruin your jeans. Nothing will ever really RUIN your jeans, aside from setting them aflame. Rain will cause a bit of indigo loss, but that's about it, it's nothing serious, especially on a hardcore pair of jeans. Just let them dry and you'll be fine.




post #17 of 27
my nga :h5:
post #18 of 27
the denim links could use some work though. mostly beginner raw denims.

I'd suggest just going to the superdenim section of sufu and lurk up the threads to the different brands
post #19 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nova View Post
^ a user on here is working on a DRY DENIM FAQ right now... i've been helping ^_^
nice. +1.
post #20 of 27
^ just need a bit more photos and should be all set!
post #21 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grondie View Post
I think the Wikipedia Definition of dry denim (which I actually edited - ha ha) needs some work.

It's only a recent phenomenon that people sought out dry denim for the specific purpose of building a worn-out distressed look. Once upon a time they were raw because they were no frills. That's it.
For a good example of some "once upon a time" denim: Levi's 501's unwashed

although these aren't being made as well as they used to be.
post #22 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by gofakeyourself View Post
Evisu is a thug brand. I only see lame gangstas wearing them.
thats pretty ignorant. ive seen lots of fakes, but real evisu are some of the best jeans in the world.
post #23 of 27
cheep! Nice to see you here...
post #24 of 27
SUPERDENIM ENCYCLOPEDIA SUPERDENIM ENCYCLOPAEDIA (Read me before posting a new thread) - superfuture :: supertalk

this will answer most of your questions
post #25 of 27
Thanks for all this - I am trying to cover more on dry denim in the blog and needed some good links & pics! Hope you don't mind if I borrow some.
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