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MWD: MEN'S DENIM GUIDE

07.11.13

Denim may be ubiquitous, but that doesn't mean that finding the right pair of jeans is straightforward. With cut, colour and finish to consider, the fine details throw up a whole myriad of sartorial challenges. And, while a trusty pair of denim jeans are undoubtedly an enduring style classic, small seasonal changes in each pair will add trend-led nuance to your look.

RAW DENIM

Unwashed and untreated, raw denim is the fabric in its purest form. Missing out the final 'washing' stage applied to most denim, raw denim jeans retain all of their original dye. Noted for comparative hardness, a raw denim finish results in a uniform colour, a firm feel and an industrial aesthetic. Cut a crisp figure in a pair in classic navy, or opt for black to achieve a bolder look.

On Reiss: Hampshire in black are ideal for anchoring all manner of different looks. Straight-legged and uniform in colour, they're at their finest when paired with tan boots, a crisp shirt and a statement knit.

SELVEDGE DENIM

Often mistakenly thought of as synonymous with raw denim, selvedge actually refers the the weave of a pair of jeans, not their finish - the term is a semi-eponymous take on 'self-edge'.

Considered as the pinnacle of denim in terms of quality, an easy way to check if your denim is indeed selvedge is to inspect the turn-up of your jeans which should be neatly aligned with a fine red stitch. Unlike mass-produced styles, selvedge denim is woven with a continuous thread which results in a more durable fabric.

On Reiss: Opt for Bath in lilac to ensure that your jeans are durable and stylish. With their selvedge weave they've been designed to last, so these jeans will withstand the rough and tumble of an active lifestyle.

WASHED

Perhaps the most popular style of jeans for everyday wear, washed jeans take on all manner of appearances, but they're all recipients of a 'washing' process.

After construction, raw denim jeans are subjected to 'washing' with pumice in a rotating drum or by using specialist textile chemicals. The result is an artfully-worn appearance and less fabric rigidity.

On Reiss: Gently washed for a delicately lived-in look, Dover in indigo offers a versatile style which will only improve with age. Ideal for off-duty days, Dover are sure to become your go-to pair for weekends in city and country alike.

COLOURED DENIM

Combining the hardy construction of denim with the vibrant appeal of chinos, coloured denim provides an opportunity to make a sartorial statement. With a whole rainbow of hues to choose from, these jeans are anything but boring.

On Reiss: Add sunshine style to wintry days with Lancaster denim chinos in yellow. This straight-leg pair offers an off-beat take on an iconic menswear style.