When the temperatures drop, jeans come back into favor, whether it’s for date night or a day at The Dome.
And while the search for a new pair of jeans may be a simple task for some women, for others, it’s as daunting as shopping for a swimsuit.
Finding the proper fit and sticking to a budget are a challenge, and so is choosing a style.
“Jeans have changed a lot over the years,” said Vicki Adjmi, founder of Jeantherapy, a mecca for designer denim and other types of upscale apparel. “It used to be that when one style was popular, like skinnies, then everybody was wearing skinnies. Then flare legs came in and everybody threw away their skinnies and wore flare legs.
“Now, anything goes.”
Adjmi, along with her associates, guides shoppers to the perfect pair of jeans by taking their physique and personality into account.
“We don’t want you to go into the dressing room with 10 pairs of jeans and get frustrated,” said Adjmi. “We can pretty much, in two pairs of jeans, get you a great fit.”
Ankle-length skinny jeans, worn with high heels or flip-flops, work well for petite women, Adjmi said. Bootcut jeans, anchored by shoes with a wedge, are flattering on almost everyone, since they elongate the leg. Dark rinses are favored during fall and winter months.
The right pair of jeans can have a transformative effect. Adjmi says she’ll turn down an invitation if she can’t wear jeans. “When you get a great pair of jeans, it changes the way you feel,” said Adjmi. “So many people I talk to say ‘I put those jeans on and I feel like a million dollars.’”
Tips for the right fit
It’s important to take into account shrinkage, if the jeans haven’t been prewashed. And some shoppers still make the mistake of buying jeans a little too small, with plans to lose weight.
The right fit comes at a price, wherever you shop. Popular high-end brands of basic, five-pocket jeans, such as AG Jeans, 7 For All Mankind, and Citizens of Humanity, can cost up to $250.
But for the budget-conscious fashionista who has her heart set on a pair of super-stylish, designer duds, there is Swap Boutique.
Swap, an upscale consignment store, receives designer apparel considered to be in mint condition from fashion-forward locals. They also take in overstock inventory from high-end boutiques across the country.
“A customer can find a pair of jeans that’s been worn a few times, or they can find a brand new pair,” said Michelle Reinhardt, the owner of Swap. “We specialize in designer jeans, so you’re only going to find brands like 7 For All Mankind, J Brand, Current/Elliot, and rag & bone.”
“I don’t think that there is a universally flattering style because our body types are so different, but I do think that there is a proper jean fit for each woman,” Reinhardt said.
Finding the right pair means trying a few on, she added. “I think the first thing is for women to make sure it fits right around the waist. What’s high-waist on one may be mid-waist on another. So make sure it fits right around the hips, and then make sure that it’s falling correctly on the legs, because it can look terrible if it’s too tight or too big.”
Swap is carrying the latest styles this fall, like high-waist flares, along with perennial favorites.
“We really like to help our customers recognize what cuts are on trend and find the right sizes for them,” she said. It’s possible that shoppers may stumble upon a pair of trendy jeans that fit well for $55.
Ironically, the reason those barely worn jeans end up at Swap is usually pretty simple: They didn’t fit the original buyer.