Jeans: Best sellers versus fashion forward

Last updated 05:00 04/07/2013

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Is any clothing item more personal than your favourite pair of jeans? 

Maybe you like them fresh out of the wash or perhaps softened by a week’s wear.  Maybe you like them to sit low, cinched by your favourite belt or maybe you enjoy the ritual of lying on the floor and using a coathanger to do them up.

There are lots of things you would happily trade with your bestie, but her jeans just don’t work on you, and vice versa.

In every respectable denim collection you’ll find a style that is the hot seller. It may have already been around for a while and shows no signs of letting up - it’s uniformly popular (see what I did there?) 

But there’ll also be something a little out there, maybe so fresh that the designers only put it into the range to capture Fashion Editors’ imaginations now, with the intention of stockists picking it up a little further down the line.

We asked five of our favourite jeans brands, to share with us their best sellers as well as their fashion-forward stars. You be the judge!


Skinny versus boyfriend: The favourite kiwi chain boasts a ripped skinny ($59.99) as its ‘classic’ bestseller.  But watch out!  Flying out the door are ‘90s-inspired styles like the one pictured ($59.99).

“Anything with distressing, patches, lighter and softer denims, looser cuts and even acid-wash are all top sellers,” says editor Josie Steenhart, who also lists denim dungarees as “massive right now.”
As for how Glassons girls are wearing the ‘90s styles, Josie says "there are three really chic ways."

"Full ‘nineties’ – anoraks, check shirts, chunky boots or high-top sneakers etc; pairing them back with beautiful, simple separates like silky blouses or cosy knits and classic high heels or loafers; or the most ‘controversial’ – double or even triple denim!”


For women it's skinny versus boyfriend:  Lee’s mid-rise ‘Licks’ in ‘Black Gloss’ ($189.90)  are the brand’s number one selling jean in New Zealand. 

Their fashion forward style is the boyfriend fit ‘Dylan’ Jean in ‘Brooklyn Blue’, ($170.90).

And for men, relaxed fit versus stovepipe:  Lee’s best selling men’s jean is the relatively relaxed fit ‘L3’ in Cove Blue ($189.90).

The brand’s most fashion forward style for men is the ‘L1 Stovepipe’ in ‘Prowler Black’ ($199.90).


For women it's plain versus print:  a classic skinny in a mid blue ($129.90) is the big seller for Levis and is quite a contrast with their directional print jean ($109.90).

And for men, blue versus coloured:  The classic blue denim 501® style ($129.90) is a popular and classic choice but put the jean in a bright green wash – a key colour for this seasons collections - and it takes on a whole new, more directional identity ($169.90).

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Plain versus print:  a plain, washed out skinny ($50) is Boohoo’s big seller, with print jeans ($50) taking out the ‘fashion forward’ badge for the online brand.


For women the battle is plain versus trimmed:  the 5 pocket skinny is one of Workshop’s most popular styles, and is currently reduced from $249 to $169 in the dark enzyme denim pictured.

Their Workshop Denim leather trim tuxedo jean ($379.00) is the brand’s most fashion-forward jean style and is available with a matching jacket for ‘a tailored, yet sexy, take on denim.’ 

Workshop introduced leather-trimmed denim into their collection from Winter 2012 and it was an instant success.

For men  it's classic versus premium/detailed:  Workshop’s most popular men’s jean is the Classic Ringspun Straight Leg - Vintage Hand Sand Indigo ($279.00). 

Asked for her most fashion forward men’s jean, Workshop’s Holly McClune says "We tend to focus on the quality of cut, cloth and construction with menswear. 

"Having said that, one of our most interesting jeans would definitely be the black selvedge chino.

“It’s a 12oz yarn-dyed black premium selvedge denim in a chino cut, with selvedge turn-up and selvedge detailing on the fob pocket.” ($329.00).

- Stuff


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