Levi’s gets its groove back

Last week I blogged about the heritage of Dr Martens. This week, the heritage baton gets passed to Levi’s. I was treated to a pre-opening store tour of the refurbed Regent Street flagship a couple of weeks ago and the main message seems to be… Levi’s is keepin’ it real.

From its industrial factory-replica refit to its new name for its denim experts – ‘drapers’ and ‘artisans’, Levi’s has realised that its customers respect its roots and is capitalising on that. OK, the ‘artisans’ moniker is a wee bit pretentious but I’m prepared to let that go. For a while, Levi’s was guilty of trying too hard to compete with the Diesels of this world but – guess what? – Levi’s isn’t about ‘sexy’, it’s about utilitarianism and authenticity. Thankfully, it is now properly embracing its workwear heritage and amen to that. A particular highlight of the flagship store (along with the visible warehouse dedicated to 501s) is a 90-something-year-old pair of Levi’s on display in the basement. Unearthed from a mine in the Mojave Desert, I ask you, how many other denim brands can boast one of these?

When I previewed the SS10 collection six months ago, I was overjoyed to see so many old favourites. Hello classic denim jacket sans faux-faded patches! Hello western plaid shirt! Hello straight-out-of-CBGBs leather biker jacket! The Guardian recently reported that Levi’s will never be cool again but I disagree. Acne may be popular with fashionistas and Uniqlo with the downtown hipster set but Levi’s has its incredible heritage and that makes it relevant again (BTW, ‘relevance’, like ‘heritage’ is a key word being bandied about right now). Its latest campaign is also a bit of a looker. As a lifelong supporter I may be biased, but I think Levi’s is ready to have it’s moment once more.

Levi’s SS10

Industrial storage
The 501s-only warehouse visible from the shop floor

Unisex fitting rooms and utilitarian seating
THOSE 100-year-old jeans
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7 Responses to Levi’s gets its groove back

  1. MariamLovesJLS. says:

    levi's are legendary. :)
    please take a look at my blog and hopefully follow, i'm following you ;)

  2. WendyB says:

    You could do a lot of double denim with all that!

  3. the style crusader says:

    i totally agree with you. there is nothing more iconically cool than old photos of people wearing perfectly worn in levis. they were the first, they were the best, and they really took the whole world by storm. i remember when i was younger and we lived in the middle east and my dad's friends who couldn't make it over to the US would beg him to bring them back one thing: Levi 501s. their iconic and legendary. whoever over at the Guardian said Levi's will never be cool again is going to be eating their words.

  4. Sister Wolf says:

    Couldn't agree more. I wear new skinny Levis and still have my old 501'a, and nothing flatters the butt like Levi's.

  5. Ella says:

    I'm not sure double denim is do-able unless you've got some floral in there somewhere.

  6. Peaches and Cream says:

    I was wondering about this store, have been seeing it plastered across every bus and tube stop in London! Thanks for the review, I might have to go check it out. I agree, they are really classic, but the stores have left alot to be desired recently, I'm glad they've picked up their game.

  7. Joe says:

    I went yesterday and the store is awesome now I couldn't expect any more from a store, really good staff and they even gave me some rivets and buttons off the display when I asked for them. They did manage to sell me two pairs of jeans and some other stuff but I was really happy with the whole experience. I just came on here to try and find some pictures to show my parents what its like downstairs but its a little different now. I don't remember seeing the 100 year old pair =(. Its I think even better than the NY Times Square store apart from thats much cheaper =/. Thanks for the post, check out the older work in my blog I did some studies on Levi's when I was at college.

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