Madewell Denim Designer
What were your first pair of jeans?
"My first significant pair were hand-me-downs from my mother. They were vintage high-rise Wranglers, in a super-light wash with busted-out knees. I wore them to threads."
What are you wearing?
"A vintage 1940's Levi's 506XX one-pocket, buckle-back big E first-edition jean jacket, a vintage cotton slipdress with lace detailing, and vintage hunting boots.The jacket is a very special item to me. A good denim jacket is hard to find, but one with a wash and history like this one makes it pretty unique. A friend that specializes in finding vintage denim came across it and kept it for me, and I of course snapped it up as soon as I laid my eyes on it!"
How many pairs of jeans do you own?
"Somewhere in the region of 500-ish..."
Do you have a preferred philosophy when it comes to jeans: Sexy and skinny, or loose and comfy?
"This very much depends on the day! I'm a sucker for a good dark and tight skinny, but I love nothing more than to throw on a vintage pair of slouchy boy jeans with an old T-shirt."
Used or new?
What's your signature wash...or does it matter?
"Wash is the first thing that attracts me to a pair of jeans. It's a huge part of what I love about denim. Dark, saturated shades are pretty much what I wear day to day, however washed-out, powdery blues are so pretty, especially as the weather gets warmer."
What's your favorite way to wear your jeans and with what?
"I love to wear a broken-in skinny with an oversized T-shirt, boots, and a ton of jewelry. Pretty basic, but it's literally my uniform."
If your jeans had a name or theme song, what would it be? Or do they?
"David Dundas, 'Jeans On.'"
Favorite example of celebrity-jean wearing (i.e., Bruce Springsteen's Born in the USA album cover).
"Patti Smith wore her jeans to death, the beauty of breaking in and really impressing a life on a jean is something I've always enjoyed."
What do you love most about your favorite denim pieces?
"Each one tells a little story about each of the chapters of my life. A lot of the denim i own is vintage so its previous owners have given them a good few years of wear before me. The older the piece the more you can see its authentic character, it makes me wonder what adventures they have lived through until now."
Photographed by Kava Gorna. Casting by Megan Delaney.
Photographed by Kava Gorna/Jed Root