Ever since I went away to college lugging some number of my father’s discarded Levi’s 501 button-fly jeans with me, I’ve held some sort of fantasy about a perfectly worn pair of jeans that are also, miraculously, flattering. (His old jeans, by the way, were not. He is eight inches taller and at least 50 pounds heavier than I am, but I convinced myself that enormous cinched belts and rolled ankles were, somehow, cool.)
I suppose it makes sense that now, at this point in the High Denim Evolution, such a thing finally exists. I enjoyed my boot-cut Sevens, and then my pencil-legged J Brands, and then my flared, ‘70s-style J Brand Love Stories, and I’ve participated in all sorts of explorations into the power of stretch, but finally here is the thing I’ve actually been waiting for since the early ‘90s: Levi’s 501 button-fly jeans, recut in a flattering shape. They are made by an L.A.-based company called Re/Done, and you can just order them online and they’ll arrive at your door and then you can wear them. The simplicity! Never again will I do what the really earnest sales guy at APC suggested and spend a weekend riding my bike in unbending selvage jeans, looking for an opportunity to have them run over by a car.
Re/Done’s high-waist crop-style is as close to perfect as I’d ever allow myself to imagine: a waistline that hits at a waistline-appropriate place, that’s (miraculously!) hemmed at exactly the right spot, which is to say just a bit shy of my ankle bone. (I am five-foot-four, for reference.) There’s something about the placement of the pockets that makes them very flattering on the rear end — they should, by all logic, look like mom jeans and yet, somehow, they just don’t. Instead they lift the whole operation. Would my entire college experience have been different had such a thing existed back then? Honestly, it probably would have been much the same, but at least I would have looked a lot better in the pictures.