Finding the perfect-fitting pair of jeans is a life-long odyssey. Trends come and go, our bodies change along with our lifestyles, and some denim just doesn’t hold up through years of washes. What we considered out favorite pair five years ago may now be the shame-inducing pair relegated to the back of the closet.
Enter Free People denim. A collection designed for the woman who knows what she wants and is not afraid of the changes life throws at her.
I recently sat down with Rachel Mallison, our Jeans Buyer, and Chlo DeAnda, our Senior Designer for Structured Bottoms, to find out what this year has in store for the line and why it may actually bring our search for perfection to an end.
What will be the biggest trend in denim this spring/summer?
RM: There are so many we’re excited about. For me, it’s oversized jeans — the baggier, the better. Whether you choose to wear it high, mid, or low in the rise, I love the nostalgic nod back to my teens growing up in the 90s.
CD: I am really excited for rigid jeans. I love how they really mold to your body. Also rinse jeans are making a comeback. I am really loving dark denim with contrast stitching. I am very excited for the summer product that highlights this.
What, if any, styles are timeless?
RM: For me, and especially for a lot of our girls, I think the flare. If you look back at the history of this shape, it really peaked in the 70s with ambassadors such as Sonny, Cher and Farrah, but has continued to survive the next four decades. I love how it is always being revived incorporating new ideas, such as the most recent cropped boot length. I don’t think we’ll ever see it leaving the denim scene.
CD: I don’t feel that one style/silhouette is timeless… jeans are personal to you. I feel that if you own a jean that fits you like a glove and makes you feel like you can conquer the world, that’s a timeless jean.
Since you are denim experts, what is the best way to care for a pair of jeans? Wash them often or rarely? Dryer or no dryer?
RM: There are so many different answers to this question, and each person will feel differently about the length of time they go between washes. For me personally I’ll wait until my jeans are visibly dirty and only then will I wash them. When I do I’ll rinse them on a cold wash and always ensure they are inside out. This will not only make sure that the color of the jeans is preserved but that the dirtiest part of your jeans, the inside, gets the most out of the wash. To dry you can either lay them flat or hang them up so that they keep their shape.
CD: I might be the wrong person to ask because I never ever wash my jeans. Maybe once or twice a year. The beauty of denim is that the more you wear it the more it becomes personal to you. I would say avoid the dryer — it breaks the elastic in stretch jeans and your jeans won’t last as long and will start to bag out.
What has been the highlight of working for FP’s denim team?
RM: For me, it’s the thrill of seeing girls wearing our product. It’s one of the things which got me into buying and keeps me constantly excited about this career. One particular highlight for us as a team was seeing Beyoncé in our jeans earlier this year — she looked incredible!
CD: I might say the time I was scrolling through my Instagram feed and saw Beyoncé wearing our jeans!! Also, anytime I see someone on the street wearing our jeans. Seeing people in the product we make never gets old. 😊
If you had to wear only one style of denim for the rest of your life, what would it be?
RM: Classic Levis 517. The combination of a high rise, cropped slight boot flare and authentic rigid denim makes, for me, the perfect fit.
CD: Probably a pair of vintage skinnies. They are just so easy to outfit with and look good anytime I put them on! One of the perks of working at FP is that I get to go vintage shopping a lot and I always come across beautiful vintage jeans for myself.