“Details make the design. Our buttondown buttons, like the 1920’s Levi’s® Sunset shirts they were inspired by, are hidden. It’s more difficult, more time consuming, and more beautiful that way.”
Ah, Levi’s is speaking my language with its Made & Crafted line, a range of beautifully classic, trend-transcenders in specially-constructed fabrics. Made & Crafted comes under the Levi’s XX umbrella which also includes Levi’s Vintage, and it’s quite a big deal as it’s an ongoing range that seems to be aimed squarely at, well, fashion fusspots like me. Having been given a tour of the collection (it has its own space in the basement of the Levi’s Vintage store in Newburgh Street), I immediately fell on the Grain Boyfriend Chino, a loose denim chino in the darkest, cleanest indigo that has – YES! – been pre-shrunk so that the fit is true to size. These come up big so although I’m usually a 28 in jeans, I ended up fitting a size 25. Being 5′ 3″, I also had to have four inches snipped off the bottom. I have to pause here to gush about the service in the Levi’s Vintage store. I know it’s great as I’ve shopped there a fair bit, but I wasn’t expecting to have the hem taken up for free and get my altered jeans back the very next day. But back they came, they look brilliant and I’m already contemplating a second pair.
The price point is similar to Levi’s Vintage and reflects the quality and design – it’s not fast fashion. You can expect to pay £140-ish for the chino jeans and up to £185 for the skinnier jeans. Other than the boyfriend chinos, I also homed in on a soft, pleated-back check shirt, the utilitarian tote bags in Yves Klein blue and the boyish white shirts which give off a kind of COS meets Ralph Lauren vibe. I think Made & Crafted will do rather well if it continues in this vein, producing modern classics that don’t change wildly from one season to the next. I don’t think customers mind paying more for pieces that are going to become the hardest working elements of their wardrobe, especially when they have the heritage of a brand like Levi’s sewn into their seams.
Buy Made & Crafted chino jeans at Net-a-Porter.com