Are Custom Denim Sites The Best New Way to Buy Jeans?


Make Your Own Denim

Make Your Own Jeans let both men and women, well, make their own jeans — all according to their exact measurements.

Custom-made clothing might be on the rise across the board, but it’s the humble pair of blue jeans that presents the single hardest item to get a proper fit off the rack.  So if anything, we’re almost surprised bespoke denim services haven’t taken off until now.  With several new custom jeans sites (and brick-and-mortar workshops) recently emerging, this is a trend to watch in 2012.

First, there’s the aptly-named Make Your Own Jeans, which guides customers through the process of creating tailor-made men’s and women’s denim for as little as $49.  Beyond putting in one’s own measurements for the perfect fit, the site also lets buyers choose their jean’s details, from embroidery to rivets.

Meanwhile, INDi Denim — which also offers both men’s and women’s styles — asks users to select a fit, wash, pocket style, etc., and then fill out a “body profile” in order to end up with the pair of jeans best suited to their shape.  (And if that’s too much, INDi can also just recommend a pre-made style for one’s body type.)

INDi Denim provides a step-by-step process for customizing denim.

Another site will work with the jeans you already know and love in order to alter their look.  Denim Refinery has customers send in their jeans to be “refined” — think new dyes, prints, or basic washes.  Users can choose from the site’s refinements, or mail in a picture of exactly what they want, along with the denim to be made over.

A view inside 3X1 New York-based custom jeans atelier.

So futuristic the business hasn’t quite launched yet, Acustom plans to use 3D scanners (yes, a bit like those of TSA fame) to engage in “digital tailoring,” creating custom jeans, suits, and eventually, a whole range of clothing.  Of course, having one’s body scanned necessitates a visit to a brick-and-mortar store, or in this case, laboratory, which Acustom will be opening in lower Manhattan in early 2012.  When they debut, they’ll be joining SoHo’s 3X1, which creates bespoke denim (to the tune of $1200) out of its downtown atelier.

Could denim customization put an end to the hunt for the perfect brand of jeans?  After all, there won’t be nearly as much of a need to try label after label if it’s easier to just cut to the chase and go bespoke.   Would you forgo your favorite jeans for a pair that’s tailor-made?

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