Selvedge Denim is so in demand because of its instantly recognizable inseam, which most denim enthusiasts proudly show by rolling up their jeans. Styled correctly they look cool and very different to your regular jeans. Its texture is uneven and irregular which also gives the fabric a unique appearance and a luxury handle. It is the variation and imperfections of the weaving process that lend character to the best selvedge denim and what continue to make it so popular.
Selvedge jeans are made to last and are specifically designed to be lived in. The denim fabric is cut from a bound end of a roll, creating a finished edge on a garment without needing any extra sewing, making a ‘self’ ‘edge’ – hence how the word selvedge was formed. The edge of the denim is woven tighter compared to non-selvedge and has a far denser weave preventing it from unraveling, therefore creating an overall more sustainable product.
It has been produced since the mid 1800’s when its primary use was for work wear. Manufacturers wanted to create a hardwearing product and Selvedge denim was the answer. Since then, it has evolved into a trend for the fashion conscious that appreciate high quality and fine craftsmanship. Old-fashioned shuttle looms are used to create selvedge fabrics, which many fabric producers have long abandoned. In the 1950s, due to high demand for jeans, modern machinery replaced these old shuttle looms because they were much faster and more precise. Japan continued to produce using these old shuttle looms and today they are undoubtedly the world leader in selvedge denim production.
The cost of selvedge denim is usually significantly more expensive than non-selvedge denim, because of the slower manufacturing process and the quality of the cotton and dyes used by premium producers. Also, when making a pair of selvedge jeans, the roll of fabric produced by these old shuttle looms is a lot thinner than the rolls of non selvedge denim, making the fabric consumption for a pair of selvedge jeans far greater.
One Denim sources its selvedge fabrics from the best denim mills in the world, mainly located in Japan. For more information on our fabric suppliers, please click here.