I have long been a J Brand fan when it comes to jeans. The fit just works. But after four years of almost daily use and endless crotch repairs (why always the crotch?) my trusty pair of (second hand!) skinny black J Brands bit the dust.
It was time to invest in a new pair of denims – but this time around, being much more aware of the environmental impact of non-organic cotton farming, I was keen to choose an organic brand. And there are some great ones out there! But Nudie Jeans was at the top of my list and when they kindly gifted me a couple of pairs for my Organic September Lookbook video on YouTube, I couldn’t believe my luck.
At first glance, their website can be a bit intimidating as a girl. All the jeans are modelled by men, which means those of us with a more feminine figure might find it tricky to imagine how those seemingly baggy jeans worn by a slender-hipped dude will look with a full rear end piled into them.
But help was at hand in the form of their PR girl who kindly guided me towards the styles that might look great on me. In the end, I chose a pair of Pipe Led and Lean Dean (check out this site if you want pics of Nudie Jeans on girls).
First thoughts? Wow! The fits of both these styles are incredible. The Pipe Led has a higher waist but both are a skinny cut which I love. I am normally a size 28 in jeans but brands can vary so I was delighted to find that they are true to size. Perfect, in fact! I opted for a 32” leg in the Pipe Led and a 30” in the Lean Dean. I’m somewhere between the two and like that I can roll up the longer leg for a more effortless casual look.
And I love that are made from GOTS certified organic cotton, something Nudie Jeans (a Swedish brand) have been using for their collection since 2012.
But their incredible approach to sustainability doesn’t end there. In fact, that’s just the beginning. As well as organic cotton, they use natural indigo to dye their denim, after which, the dye water is filtered to a point where it is actually drinkable! The rivets they use are ungalvanized which means no toxic chemicals have been used and even the leather patch on the back is a cast off from an Italian shoe company that they’ve repurposed. Even their packaging is made from recycled materials.
Around 70% of their products are made in Europe and they pay a living wage to all their garment workers based in India whilst ensuring safe and ethical working conditions.
But the deal breaker for me, when choosing a new pair, was Nudie’s “jeans are for life” approach which means they offer free repairs for life in their stores. That’s free repairs. For Life. Way to build customer loyalty!
And if I decide one day that skinny jeans are no longer my thang (is that ever gonna happen?) or I need a different size, I can trade in my pair to be patched up and resold as part of their second-hand range and I’ll receive 20% off on a new pair. So, if you’re looking for a second-hand pair of jeans that are also ethically made from organic cotton (niche, much?), then Nudie’s second-hand or recycled rails are probably the answer!
Should a pair of jeans be beyond repair, then they have found creative ways to reuse the material in a variety of accessories and products. The Monty Five Panel baseball cap, for example, is made from old worn out Nudie Jeans denim. They have rugs made from recycled woven denim fabric. And even whole new pairs of jeans have been made using their recycled materials. Check out the Grim Tim Post Recycle Dry which contains both organic cotton and recycled denim.
There are a couple of Nudie Jeans stores in London, so I would also recommend going in for a try on session. There’s lots to choose from and the staff really know their styles. But if it’s a repair you’re after and you don’t have a store near by, then you can request a free repair kit.
Like anything that has been carefully crafted, each pair of Nudie Jeans is designed to age beautifully; each movement the wearer makes (or doesn’t!) will mold the jeans into a pair that is truly unique.
And I’m not sure if this is something that happens to all bloggers when writing about how much they love a certain brand or product, but I may have just sold them to myself all over again…. a pair of ECRU Lean Dean’s have been added to my basket and are now winging their way to my closet…it counts as research, right?