When it comes to selvedge jeans, I’m a believer. I’ve only got a single pair at the moment (from another Kickstarter project, funnily enough – back when Gustin was starting up), but they’ve been the longest-lasting jeans I’ve had. Probably going on 6+ years now of at least weekly wear, and they’re holding up like nothing else I’ve had. The just-launched project from Half Century Jeans looks to improve even on that.
Now, selvedge is so durable given to the nature of how it’s made – the loom has a continuous cross-thread going, which gives the weave a tight finished edge, and just overall durability. As I’ve mentioned, my own use case shows regular wear over the last 6+ years makes for a pair of jeans that is longer lasting than anything you’ll pick up at the department store. For Half Century Jeans, that wasn’t enough.
They’ve also woven in something called a Spectra fiber. This is a fiber that’s more commonly found in high-performance ropes (think climbing gear) or ballistic vests. In other words, some durable stuff. I’ve been corresponding with the brand, and they state that these fibers don’t impact the flexibility or comfort of the jeans, so that’s a reassurance (more on that in a bit).
It’s also interesting here, in terms of a Kickstarter jeans project, that they’re offering both men’s and women’s cuts. This is rarer, as I’ve generally only seen it offered for one gender or the other. Also rare, that 50-year guarantee. In that, if something goes wrong, they’ll repair or replace them for 50 years. Now that also means you’re depending on them being around for that long (for instance, my RPM West Quarter Century jacket warranty us void now, since they’re out of business). That’s just part of the caveat emptor that is all but given for Kickstarter, I suppose.
Earlybird pricing starts at about $97, which is not bad for a pair of selvedge jeans at all. Add in the 50-year durability, and it’s, frankly, a pretty low cost of entry. I do like what we see here in the project, which is fully-funded one day in (project closes on May 1, 2018, with shipping later that month). We are in talks with the brand to get a pair in for a true hands-on impression; we’ll update you once we’ve had a chance to do that. project page