Archival Clothing - Made in USA

Archival recommends: Gamine brand denim for women

Posted on: May 27th, 2017 by Lesli Larson

Denim for women is tricky. After many years, I have narrowed my own brand make/model preferences down to Levi’s LVC 501 (1947), Rogue Territory Stanton, and Sugar Cane 1947. I prefer old school, mile wide leg openings, high rises, and huge cuffs. I’m a not-so-curvy, shortish woman, so I can get away with modifying men’s models to fit my body. That being said, many friends ask me what jeans I like and what to buy. Rather than sending them on an impossible journey of denim discovery (minimum five year timeline), I’m trying to short circuit the search process and drum up some readymade recommendations.

Criteria: denim that is well made, durable, washable, stylish, and includes historical design features. Pricepoint is a separate issue. Most friends are willing to pay under $200 for what they identify as premium denim. Women who are looking for workwear for use outdoors may wish to pay less (given that the pennies-per-wear model stategy doesn’t really work when you are replacing your jeans every six months or so).

My current denim workwear recommendation is Gamine. Gamine started out producing denim for gardeners.  They have expanded their audience to “geologists, farmers, and weekend warriors.”

I recommend the flagship Slim Slouch Dungaree.

The model is custom made and comes in three fits: Straight, Demi, Bold.

Pricepoint: $150.00

The pants are a throwback classic Carhartt and Filson workpants. Lots of patch pocketing. Double fabric at the knees. White Oak denim. All material elements made in the USA.

If you prefer khakis, Gamine is collaborating with legend Dickies (and legendary company archivist, Ann Richardson) on a new model (coming in June): the Sweetwater Trouser

Comments:

  1. Justin on

    Thanks for recommending Gamine, first I’d heard of them and they look great. I’d throw the Levi’s Vintage Clothing 1978 501 into the mix for women. The 12oz denim they used looks great so far and the fit is perfect for a woman. I truly can’t imagine a man wearing these jeans, the rise is quite low for a man even by today’s standards and the taper from hips down draws a very flattering line to the ankle for a woman without being too narrow. A more curvy woman could possible be left with little bit of slack in the waist if sized to fit her hips, but this was remedied by a 30 minute hot soak of just the waist band to bring that fit in check.

    1. Lesli Larson Post authoron

      Thanks for the info about the LVC 1978 denim (I get time stuck in the 1947 version). I will add that into my brand survey. Where do you source your Levi’s?

  2. Justin on

    Sure thing. After a few pair over the years I’ve found the 47 to be quite often inconsistent due to LVC meddling with the fit seasonally, but it is still a great pair of jean for sure. The 78’s were purchased right up the road in Portland at Lizard Lounge a summer ago, but it’s really the only pair of Levi’s I’ve bought in years. I could throw a couple more pair in the pot as well for working well on a variety of female shapes, my girlfriend has become quite the guinea pig for my experimenting. She just inherited a pair of my old Warehouse & Co. 1000XX that look great on her after finally hitting hot water for the first time. You may run into her around campus one day

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