There comes a time in every denim lover’s life when she goes on a mad hunt for vintage jeans. No disrespect to contemporary denim brands (we love them, too), but there’s something extra-special about scoring a pair of perfectly beat-up jeans from 20 years ago. That durable, thick fabric, the tight, butt-hugging fit, the high-waisted rise, the worn-in blue wash — it’s that unmistakeable and unreplicatable feel that only exists within the world of secondhand retail.
Considering how difficult it can be to find just regular, contemporary jeans that fit well, scoring that Goldilocks pair of just-right vintage ones always feels like a massive stroke of luck. But there are tricks and tips to making the search a bit easier — and we got the scoop straight from denim aficionados themselves. Read on for insider tidbits from the folks at Levi’s, the co-founder of Re/Done, the co-owner of NYC-based vintage shop Grand Street Bakery, and R29’s own styling director on how to find that perfect pair of vintage jeans. You’re not doing this right unless you’re deep in the blue.