My friend Pete, at the age of 15, first introduced me to the concept of the Levis 501 ( or was it 601?) and the cold bath 'shrink to fit' ritual. I was amazed. And impressed ( and he had the first Who album).
I never followed suit. I obviously wasn't serious enough. I think my first jeans were Lee. And then a couple of modish short-lived brands. And then some Wranglers. At one stage some OshKosh dungarees ( well, I was running a wholefood cafe).
In the mid 70's , when I rediscovered clothes that fitted I came across Fiorucci jeans. And they did sizes to every inch; not just 30, 32, 34, but 30, 31, 32. Best fitting jeans I ever owned.
Then I remember some Pepe jeans fitted well. But the rest is all a bit of a blur of indifferently fitting Levis, Wranglers, Lee Cooper. I sort of took my eye off the sartorial ball ( otherwise known as reaching middle-age).
A few years ago I started to make a bit more of an effort and came across some Paul Smith velvet jeans. They didn't fit as well as the Fioruccis , and my sons weren't entirely convinced of their appropriateness, but I liked them. And then some Valentino black denim ( but I had to remove the back pocket label- just a bit too flash for my liking)
Currently my badly fitting Levis are consigned to gardening duty. But I do have two pairs of jeans that fit, and I'm happy to wear.
I am told that 7 For All Mankind were a fashionable label last year, which is when I bought them. I was visiting friends in the USA and said that I wanted some new jeans. A modest ambition. So the charming Ms T took me to Barneys LA. Well, that's what I call shopping. The terribly nice young assistant asked what I was looking for. They appeared to have countless brands and styles. I said I wanted dark blue denim, straight leg, and no extraneous ornamentation.He delivered six pairs for me to try. I chose the ones that I felt fitted best, which was confirmed by my shopping companion. It was only then that I looked at the label ( and the price). They have subsequently prompted the occasional compliment.
My second pair were purchased more recently, from Uniqlo, the Japanese retail brand with a couple of branches in London. A completely different experience, close to being challenging, and certainly quite hard work. Primarily because this is a youthful shop. But it's quite utilitarian in design so one doesn't feel that it is a completely alienating environment. They have a wide range of styles, but, of course no help from the assistants. I persevered , and came away with a well fitting pair of straight leg jeans with no contrived fading or rips. They also have no branding, which for me is a plus. And, another plus, they were very cheap.