Hiro’s obsession with “serious” jeans took flight with the purchase of a pair of Evisu jeans when he was 17. He still has those jeans today.
He says that the following constitutes his criteria on jeans:
❝ Good fit – they have to drop right
Good colour – I like a good indigo
Good stitching – I like double needle machine stitching
Hiro’s most recent acquisition was a pair of Levi’s 501 XX 1947 Reissue (shrink-to-fit) “big Es”. These are regarded as the definitive 5 pocket jeans. The quintessential 501 model. Hungry glints appear in the eyes of jeans fanatics across the globe at the sight of the original zinc buttons, concealed copper rivets, and, the XX red selvedge is the prime cherry that tops the denim cake.
I had completely underestimated the cult following of these particular jeans and was astounded to hear that an original pair can fetch large sums of money in Japan (the land of the collector). I have seen pairs go for anything between £2000 – £6500 for a worn vintage wartime version. Yes, some Japanese fellows take their jeans very seriously indeed.
Now back to Hiro and his shrink to fits! The buying of the jeans is where the actual “fun” starts.
With jeans on, Hiro gets into a hot bath where he soaks in his inky denim stew for half an hour before continuing to wear the jeans until they were near dry. This took about 5 hours in London’s miserable climate. He tells me that he has not quite completed his shrinking process and that he needs to further shrink the leg length before he considers them ready to wear. I am sure that he will be happiest with them in 10 years or thereabouts when they have been worn in to perfection.
The well-worn, well loved and still going Evisus.
The pair on the right are a Japanese edition and the pair on the left are Euro exclusives. Notice the difference in the ticks.
Good quality crafted jeans like all useable items of quality, if treated well, only grow in beauty over time. This is a specialist subject for real denim connoisseurs as i am certain that most folk would turn their noses up at a well aged pair of jeans. Not Hiro!