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Affordable Selvedge Denim – Five Plus One

Five Plus One is our weekly series of buyer’s guides. We pick a specific category and dig up five great options along with one that’s a little outside the norm.

Everybody needs a cheap pair of jeans, one that can “take a punch” for the other potentially more precious items in your wardrobe.

But just because they’re affordable (or collateral) doesn’t mean they need to feel cheap. There are plenty of makers producing jeans that don’t sacrifice on many of the details we’ve come to love from higher price point brands chainstitch hems, tucked belt loops, and yes, that special cuff note of a selvedge id. Below we’ve got five options for reasonably priced selvedge denim, plus one more that pushes the bounds of reason a little further.

1) Sugar Cane: 12oz. Standard Denim – SC42009

If you’re new to raw denim and *not* a masochist, there are few better places to start than the above pair of Sugar Canes. They have everything you’d want from a serious Japanese denim brand: hidden rivets, chainstitched hems, iron buttons, embossed leather patch, and unsanforized selvedge denim. More importantly, the denim weighs in at a 12 oz. per square yard – light enough to lessen the burden of breaking them in, but heavy enough to yield some nice fades a few years down the line. And despite being made of unsanforized denim, the finished jean is prewashed, so no need to worry about estimating shrinkage in the sizing.

Available for $142 at Hinoya.

2) C.O.F. Studio: Relaxed 5-Pocket Selvedge Cotton Hemp

Get a head start on the warmer weather, or at least dreaming for it to come, with this perfectly lighter pair from C.O.F. Studio. In a trim 2×1 twill, the fiber blend of 80% cotton and 20% hemp is 100% selvedge. The hemp blend gives these a paler color of indigo and a level of breathability your lower half will thank you for come summer.

Available for $138 at Franklin & Poe.

3) Uniqlo: U Selvedge Regular Fit Jeans

Uniqlo is a great go-to brand for essentials, such as henleys, tees, and so forth, but their U Regular Selvedge is nothing to scoff at, either. They are just about the cheapest selvedge on the market, and with their great fit and construction they are hard to ignore. This upcoming pair is a bit fuller of a fit than anything they’ve offered in selvedge in the past, a sign of the big pants times we are in today.

Available for $60 from Uniqlo.

4) GAP: ’90s Original Straight Selvedge Jeans with Washwell

Gap was one of the first mainstream, shopping-mall brands to start selling selvedge in the USA, and in all honesty, they did a pretty good job. Their pricing is competitive with most entry-level brands, and they offer selvedge in several cuts. They also offer one thing that most selvedge brands do not: multiple inseam lengths. While these aren’t going to come hemmed on a Union Special 43200G, you can get them in the correct inseam length right off the bat, which is a major plus.

Available for $99 from Gap.

5) Burgus Plus: 15oz Selvedge Denim 770-22

So, you’re ready to go a little heavy but don’t know where to turn? Burgus Plus, Hinoya‘s house label, has been waiting for you with this pair of 15 oz. Pima cotton beauties which are ready to put your legs to the test. Made in Japan with a double-dipped rope-dyed indigo, they’ll take some dedication to fade, but those who persevere will be rewarded with some incredible crinkly. low-tension fades.

Available for $134 at Hinoya.

Plus One – Sage x Mika Motorcycles No Skool Chopper 19oz Unsanforized Deep Indigo

Remember when I said to get the Sugar Canes if you’re not a masochist? These are the jeans to get if you are one. It’s 19 oz. of unsanforized denim directly from Indonesia, made exclusively for Sage in their collaboration with Mika Motorycles. They’re rigid and hairy and come in only Slim or Slim Straight varieties to imprison your legs, but a quick look at our Sage fade archive will show you that if you want denim evolution, this is one of the brands you should be considering.

Available for $117 at Sage Denim.

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