Sunday, August 8, 2010

Wringing out your denim

A lot of things occurred in the past ten months, but there is one thing that stands out like a immobile lodestar in the face of this flux and change (standing-athwart-history-yelling-stop!), and that is the simple fact that I have not washed my new APC jeans (purchased back in October 2009) in that period of time.



Now now, here come the caveats that are supposed to make this slightly less ridiculous to a non denim-head: the jeans are selvege denim and I usually go this long without washing the raw dark stuff, that by keeping the jeans dirty it imparts a better fade and thus more personalized-jeans-experience, and most importantly, once you hit 5 months w/o washing what’s really the point of holding out a few months more to make it to the double-digit month category?

This pattern of hitting some absurd mile-marker in time with denim and then out of nowhere getting fired up to wash the darn things is something that repeats itself over and over with me. After awhile though I just reach my own personal tipping point of dirtiness (real or perceived) and toss the things (and before you ask: woolite dark, inside-out, by itself, cold wash etc etc) in the wash.

Today was one of those days, don’t ask me why.

I felt like documenting the whole thing, and if it comes off like a wistful parent snapping 278 pictures for their child’s first haircut - well - I can’t get around that. It’s borderline obsessive, I know, but something (and that something has been written about already and available for dissemination if you want to e-mail me, though not posted here because it interrupts the narrative flow much like this epic parenthetical thought) compels me to record it.

SOME SELECTED PICTURES THE DENIM PRIOR TO ITS FIRST WASH


I love the structure, the undulations and the topography that raw denim obtains after months and months of use.


Denim with a faded pocket where your wallet usually rests is one of the coolest things a guy can have. There, I said it.


Blown out crotch. It happens, just patch it.


Reason #30,983 why raw denim is cool: the crinkly-cut design that occurs behind your knees that slightly resembles the cover of Joy Division's Unknown Pleasures album.


I cuff. Do you cuff?

After taking a couple of good-bye pictures (and perhaps a tearful hug) I dutifully turned the denim inside-out, placed a little Woolite Dark in the washing machine and turned the duties over to the cold water delicate cycle.

ASIDE REGARDING THE CHOSEN METHOD OF WASHING THE DENIM

Technically I'm aware that I have several cleaning options available to me, and that I basically selected one of the non-extremist ways of washing the jeans. APC, among others, recommend that you either a) Have it dry-cleaned for your first washing b) walk into the ocean with them on and have them dry out in the sand or c) just let them soak for an hour with cold water and Woolite Dark.

I realize the various benefits of these methods (namely that it enables you be an even bigger denim snob). However, I feel like going 10 months without washing my jeans is extreme enough for me.

CONTINUATION OF THE PICTURES AND THOUGHTS

Washing machine action shots!









Once the jeans dry out I'll post further pictures

FURTHER HAND-WRINGING ON THE MINUTAE OF DOCUMENTING THE WASHING OF A PAIR OF JEANS THAT YOU MAY OR MAY NOT WANT TO READ

As I mentioned, available upon request. 

6 comments:

  1. Dan, I request more denim snobbery!

    I picked up a pair of APC New Standards at Housing Works last year for $30! Brand new! In exactly the right size!

    I had them washed after a couple of weeks and I think they might have even been put in the drier at my local laundry service place (Chee's at Hudson and 11th. They do a pretty good job). This was before I really appreciated what I had.

    Well, it's been months and months since that washing and I don't plan on doing it again soon. They just get better and better looking the longer you wear them. At some point I'll put them through a cold cycle, or maybe even dry clean them. But for now I don't see a real need. I'm going to wait for the wallet outline. Not quite there yet . . .

    Anyway, cool post, great jeans.

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  2. Hahaha alright man I'll post some more follow up pics soon.

    Love that you were able to get something good at Housing Works. I hear all the time about great finds there but I've never had much luck when I've gone.

    Glad you aren't washing them now too. Didn't mention it in the post, but when the jeans start to get a little ripe throw them in the freezer overnight. It really helps, I swear.

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  3. Amazingly thorough post. The washing machine action shots are incredible.

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  4. When are you posting pictures post-wash?

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  5. amazing post. work with deniim for a while and i learned alot. great site. thank you. Conan

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  6. post- wash pics please! I'm sitting about one year in to my APC NS's and want to see how yours come out before I wash mine :)

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