From Blue Jean Baby to Jovani Lady
May 12, 2017
Your blue jeans are your life. You even go to school in them every single day. The only you skirts you do have are various cuts of denim skirts. You accessorize your best pair of skinny jeans to attend football games and to go out with friends. You have not worn a dress since you were a little girl. With prom just around the corner, however, it is time for a change. For one night you can ditch the denim and look like a lady. You can choose from one of these several Jovani formal dresses that are chic and simple you will fall in love.
Jovani 50655 Prom Dress
This sheer simplicity in this Jovani 50655 floral dress is bound to make anyone sing a different denim melody. This is especially due to its navy multi colored floral pattern. This would look adorable worn with a pair of denim jeans. This dress offers the appearance of a more form-fitting silhouette. A high neckline showcases your shoulders flawlessly in this tighter fitting neckline. The entire dress is adorned with lace applique. However, these lovely appliques will not make you look like you are wearing your mother’s dooly.
Jovani 47025 Prom Dress
You will fall in love with this Jovani 47025 two-piece dress. The cropped top could easily be worn with any jeans for an after prom party! Just ditch the skirt and you are on your way. This dress will let dance the night away because it is composed of jersey. Jersey is a fitted material that allows more freedom of movement than others. Metallic beaded trim surrounds the midriff of the crop top and at the waistline of the skirt. The bodice has an open back with cut outs on the sides. Making it appear flirtatious and fun.
Jovani 48985 Prom Dress
This open back Jovani 48985 dress may convince you to trade in those jeans just for one day. The bodice of this dress has a deep v-neckline that cascades into simple spaghetti straps. These straps drape down onto a wide open back. If you have curves under those jeans, this form fitting floral dress just might be what you are looking for. That is if you do not mind showing them off! This dress features floral lace appliques. These appliques tastefully embellish the dress. You will not have to worry about making this dress appear too tacky.
Jovani 48708 Prom Dress
This lace crop top Jovani 48708 gown is a show stopper. As is the superb simplistic full white skirt that is patterned with a blue floral print. You might never put jeans on again after you everyone sees you in this charming dress. The crop top is composed of white lace which has a high jewel neckline. The neckline is embellished with sequins and beading. The same element is featured throughout the bodice. Your back and shoulders will look lovely in the sleeveless racerback design of the back. You probably would have never seen yourself in a ballroom skirt! Until you wear this one with a sheer overlay that is slit in the front. This gives this skirt a hint of class without being over the top.
Jovani 33679 Prom Dress
You will be looking like a breathtaking black beauty in this all-black, fitted, Jovani 33679 embroidered prom dress, featuring a full illusion backline. This see through back panel creates the essences of this dress. This adds a bit of intrigue to this form fitting dress. There are vibrant multi colored applique designs highlighted on this dress. There is one large one featured on front waistline to one side, as well as, across the bateau neckline. Cascading down the back of this dress are more brilliantly colored appliques. These adorn the illusion back and drape down the rest of the dress. These drop down the dress in a zig zag pattern. Imagine how luminious and lovely your dress will look while taking pictures. When it hits the light just right those flowers will shimmer and shine with color. They will pop especially because the rest of dress is black. This dress also has an option to be ordered in white. The floral applique will sparkle upon a flawless white dress. Either option will have you hike jeans for a day!
How to Distress Jeans – Quick and Easy Aging
April 1, 2017
I never thought I would someday be writing about how to distress jeans. It’s really quite simple and not very expensive. The reason for the high cost of this look in designer jeans is the fact that it is more often than not achieved with a high labor cost. The processes involved require a great deal of attention to detail and cannot be fully automated.
How to Soften and Fade Jeans:
If you have time, all it takes is a series of washes. But if you are like most of us, you want that look now. The secret is simple: bleaching. Here are some simple instructions to control the process:
- Use rubber gloves, bleach is deadly on your hands
- Lay your jeans out on an old sheet or towel that you no longer care about
- Protect the table from the bleach
- Flatten out the jeans
- If you want to completely separate the effect in the front from the back, slip some plastic bags inside the legs
- Use a sponge to apply the bleach. Dip it in the bleach and squeeze the excess out
- Avoid dripping, remember any drip of bleach will have an effect on the fabric
- Stroke the pants legs from top to bottom with the damp sponge
- Continue down to the hem, emphasizing the areas you want to fade more
- Work quickly, as the bleach will damage the fibers of the denim if on for too long
- Do both legs, and turn the pants around
- As soon as you have finished drawing your bleached pattern on both sides, wash the jeans in cold water, a full cycle without any other clothes
For a more even all-over bleach:
- Use a wash cloth instead of a sponge
- Apply the bleach-dampened wash cloth to the jeans, pressing to transfer the bleach in as uniform a manner as possible
- Try not to over bleach by positioning the wash cloth without overlaps
- Cover all of the pants, including pockets and seems, then wash as above.
A spray bottle with bleach and water can also create great effects. Please wear goggles!
How to Distress Jeans:
You will recall that this involves the partial removal, through wash and friction, of the superficial layer of indigo and some breaking of the filaments and controled fraying. All that it takes is abrasion!
You can use any of several tools, just be careful. They are sharp. Also be careful not to overdo the rubbing, no matter what tool you use, and to do it just where natural wear would occur. I personally find phony looking signs of deterioration, such as whiskers or fades in the wrong places, to be just that, phony.
Practice with an old pair or with an inexpensive new pair. You need to get a handle of exacly how much each of the following tricks will affect the look of your jeans.
Here are some suggested tools and techniques:
- A knife: You will need to place a block of wood inside the leg to offer some support and an adequate surface to press against. Rub the surface of the pants as though shaving, in any direction. Achieve the look you want, but respect the integrity of the fabric.
- A cheese grater: With some practice, you can achieve some very special looks with a cheese grater. The rougher side will produce a very interesting pattern of abuse on the denim.
- Sand Paper: This is my favorite tool, as it comes in many different grits. “Grit” refers to the number of abrasive particles per square inch of sandpaper. The lower the grit the rougher the sandpaper. Start with a medium grit and work up to a finer one for more control. You will achieve better results than with a knife. You can also find abrasive sponges in different grits. These are great to work with, as they are very easy to hold.
The more localized control that sandpaper offers will allow you to selectively fray pockets, hemlines, or any other part that you think will add to the natural worn look that you are after. You will also be able to more naturally blend the worn out areas with those not so worn out.
Do not weaken the stitching, this will only shorten the life of your creation. Place objects in the pockets, such as a round or rectangular drink coasters, and sand around their shape. This gives a very realistic worn wallet effect.
- Pumice Stones: These are also very efffective tools for sanding denim. They work great for roughing up the edges of cut holes. As with the sandpaper, you can moisten the pumice in bleach.
- Power tools: You can also use power tools with grinding tips or other abrasive attachments. They will help you do things faster, but at the risk of overdoing. A Dremel Moto Tool is probably the easiest to handle and there are special tips with sandpaper attached.
How to Destroy Jeans:
You can make holes in jeans by overdoing any of the above methods. The trick is to make the holes look natural. Grind away at the fabric slowly. Try not to localize the worn area, spread it with diminishing wear the further you get from the intended hole.
The area around the hole should be worn out as well as bleached to further blend the hole with the surrounding fabric. “Finish” the edges with a pumice stone or sandpaper dampened in bleach. Also dampening a sponge with bleach and applying it to the outer edges of the hole will add to the natural worn look.
Ripped jeans are a bit different. The rip is not necessarily from wear, and should not look the same as a worn out hole.
I don’t care much for this look, but if that’s what you want, here is how to do it. I recommend using a sharp pocket knife. Be careful, they are very sharp. Rub the blade of the knife perpendicular to the line of the rip that you want. Continue until you create a slit, then fray the edges, exposing the threads that are perpendicular to the rip. Do this until the hole is the size that you want and the edges are fuzzy. A wash and a dry will further mess up the edge. To some extent this will control further fraying.
To reinforce this newly created hole, turn your pants inside out and place an adequately cut piece of fabric around it and sew it. An iron on will work as well, but the stitching, done either by hand or with a sewing machine, will make it look much better.
I prefer not too many holes, 3 to 5 should be enough. The current trend, however, seems to be for more smaller holes, as though struck by shrapnel!
Use paint, oil or bleach. Think about natural patterns that could occur in everyday activity. May be you leaned into a large greasy gear at the factory? Or you dropped the roller or the top of the can of paint on your jeans when helping your friend paint his apartment?
Don’t over do the stains, you can easily cross the line from chic to drab!
How to Dye Blue Jeans:
For a full discussion on how to dye jeans, I recommend you visit the website of Rit Dye (ritstudio.com), where you will find a step by step guide.
It’s easy, fun, and opens a path to many great possibilities.
Learning how to distress jeans will not only save you tons of money, it’s also a great way to personalize your wardrobe. If this is a look you want, and have the patience to do it, give it a try.
The Revival of Designer Jeans
March 1, 2017
So, why are designer jeans such a rage? For generations we’ve accepted blue jeans as something plain and practical, as they were meant to be. After all, the original patent granted to Levi Strauss and Jacob Davis was for a utilitarian improvement on the already existing denim coveralls. Their contribution was simply the idea of using metal rivets to reinforce the pant’s seams.
Jeans have been a favorite of several past generations, each modifying them to fit their times. They are not new, and are still not universally accepted as proper attire.
They have gone from being the work clothes of coal miners, to the weekend wear of World War II soldiers, and from the hip look of teenage rebels, to the uniform of Hollywood cowboys. They raise eyebrows and blood pressure. When Brooke Shields posed for Calvin Klein in the famous “nothing comes between me and my Calvins” campaign, designer jeans were born and the stage was set for today’s very fashionable rebels.
What came first: designer jeans or celebrities?
Now, more than ever, celebrities are playing a role in defining pop culture, and by merely sharing our preference for the ordinary seem to make it chic, and yes, pricey.
Denim aficionados are usually first attracted by the brand or the look, often as seen on some megastar.
Then, after what can be many frustrating hours trying on countless pairs, they end up falling in love with the fit of one specific label. Brand loyalty in the designer jeans market is ultimately earned by offering a great fit. We all swear by our best fitting jeans (with or without knowing that what is “best” for our body type may not work for anybody else).
Today’s designer blue jeans are a wardrobe staple, by far surpassing the little black dress in their versatility and universal appeal. But what has ultimately made this new generation of designer jeans so appealing to us? Here are my thoughts on this subject:
- Styles: A seemingly endless variety of styles, making it very difficult to run into somebody wearing exactly the same pair.
- Cut: Unabashed and unrestrained styling of what traditionally was a utilitarian garment, making them more feminine, sexier, and more upscale. Designers are using every trick in the book to make you look great in jeans.
- Fit: A thorough understanding of the market’s desire for a great fit (they can hug, ride, cup, rise, shape, expose and more)
- Finishes: The variety of finishes and washes that make new jeans so wearable. The worn look and feel of broken in jeans (something we used to have to patiently work for) is now available directly from the store’s racks.
- Embellishments: These personalize, add character, a feeling (or reality) of luxury and help to further distinguish one brand from another.
- Textiles: The magic of stretch (most of the cut and fit miracles would not be possible with the more rigid denim)
And yes, then come the “celebrity styles”. They look great in their designer jeans, and every manufacturer understands that we all wish to look as sexy as they do. Sounds superficial, but this marketing strategy works like a charm.
Brand Bios and Lifestyles
Jeans, as we have mentioned and will be talking about more in future articles, are a staple fashion item to many specific lifestyles. Some brands manage to go beyond a simple association with a celebrity. They are born from and truly embody a way of life. Such is the case of the labels listed below. Take a moment to read about their origin and see which you feel an afinity towards. As important as fit is, the search for the perfect pair jeans also entails lifestyle decisions. There are many more brand bios coming, so come back often.
- Affliction Denim
- Antik Denim
- Joe’s Jeans
- Lucky Brand Jeans
- Not Your Daughter’s Jeans
- Rock & Republic
- 7 For All Mankind
- True Religion
I hope that the information on this site helps you distinguish between what looks great on Britney and what will look great on you.
You’ll find the following themes running through this site:
- My love for jeans and their versatility
- The importance of accessories, after all you don’t wear jeans by themselves, or do you?
- How important it is to dress for your body type and size, from head to toe.
- The concept that all of our choices in fashion, from hairstyle to shoes add to the creation of our personal fashion style.
- Our suggestions should be taken as tools, not rules. Everybody’s shape, size, color are unique and can’t be viewed separate from your personality.
- The more conscious and informed we are when making these choices, the better we will look and feel about ourselves.
So, read on and enjoy. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any doubts, coments or criticisms.
The History of Blue Jeans
February 12, 2017
Garment worn by American manual workers at the end of the 19th century, blue jeans became emblematic of the American way of life, before the fashion of jeans gained all the continents and all social categories. The comfort and robustness of this seamed pants cut into the denim canvas have resisted and faded.
Where does the name come from?
The fabric used to make blue jeans is denim. It is a cotton canvas in serge weave that was originally woven in Nîmes, hence its name (denim would come phonetically from “de Nîmes”).
The very tight weave is made from a chain dyed blue (at least originally) and a weave or white. The blue of the chain came from a dye called “blu di genova” (in Italian, “blue of Genoa”) and the name jeans would come from a distortion of the pronunciation of the word genovese.
The birth of blue jean
The long history of jeans begins as early as the 16th century in Nîmes, where the denim fabric is made.
But it was in 1853, at the height of the gold rush, that Levi Strauss had the idea of making trousers in the canvas of his tents, for the Western conquerors then needed solid work clothes.
Around 1860, Levi Strauss continued to make pants by replacing the canvas with cotton made in Nîmes, just as robust but colored in blue by indigo baths: it was the birth of blue jeans.
The design of blue jeans Levi Strauss
It was not until 1873 that the orange stitching on the back pockets, in the shape of an arch representing an eagle, and the pockets with rivets appeared on blue jeans.
In the following year, to prevent counterfeiting, Levi Strauss and Jacob Davis obtained the patent for the rivets on the pockets, which prevented them from tearing.
The 501 made its appearance on the market in 1890.
The blue jeans of the United States to Europe
During the great crisis of 1929, jeans was adopted by peasants and workers, and in 1933, under the New Deal, tens of thousands of denim overalls were distributed to the disinherited.
Around 1935, the fashion of blue jeans spread among a student and artistic population and these pants were introduced into women’s wardrobes.
Jeans landed in Europe with the GI’s in 1945. In Europe, this garment has always been more expensive than in its country of origin.
It is necessary to wait for this period so that the jeans is declined also in black.
In the 1950s, jeans, associated with the black jacket and the Harley, became the symbol of youth revolt. James Dean and Marlon Brando contribute to its success.
Blue jeans in the 70’s
The blue jean becomes a dress code for the hippie generation. Its shape changes with elephant paw jeans and it gets personalized. Indeed, it is customized, painted, embroidered, sewed shells, rhinestones, jewelry, flower motifs or “peace and love”.
In France, jeans became a very important commodity with the 1973 oil shock. This market grew exponentially until the early 1980s.
In New York, a selection of decorated jeans exhibited at the Museum of Contemporary Art for two months attracts 10,000 visitors.
It was in 1978 that the stone-washed, jeans washed away by a treatment that consists of bombarding the fabric of small pumice stones.
Blue jeans from the 80s to the present
After a decline in favor of slacks, lighter pants and more dressed, blue jeans returns to the front of the scene in 1986 and established itself as a product of fashion in its own right.
In the 1990s, the appearance of the superstar gave a kick to this great classic, soon followed by the Lycra jeans wave in 1994. Lycra jeans met a great success with women and in 1996, for the first time , women buy as many jeans as men.
In 2000, Rica Lewis became number one in jeans in the retail market.
Today, jeans have become an identity sign of belonging to a community. Its shape (the slim, the boot cut, the relax, the regular, etc.) or its brand (diesel, notify, acquaverde, pepe jeans) is a sign of rallying to a social stereotype.
From the functional clothing worn by the pioneers to the creations of the greatest stylists, blue jean will have marked the history of the 20th century.