5 Guys. 5 Trades. 5 Break-in Stories.
Our new collaboration with Nudie Jeans—Swedish master-craftsmen of raw denim in its purest form—follows five men of distinction over the course of nine months, as they do their best to beat up a crisp, new pair of jeans. You can follow their progress here on Men’s Shop Daily, as well as on Instagram.
Keep reading to meet the five guys—from a bicycle shaman to a caffeine connoisseur—whose stories, and jeans, we’ll be getting better acquainted with in the months to come.
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Preface: We’re calling the project Breaking Denim because, as our friends at Nudie would tell you, no fabric ages more beautifully and uniquely than denim. Half the fun of owning a new pair is working it from a stiff, dark stranger to a soft, faded friend. Rips where your wallet sits, grease spatters from your girlfriend’s p.o.s. car, a snag from the time you had a to hop a fence—wear them proudly like battle scars, until your jeans are a journal of your life and times. Remember: Washing too soon is the #1 enemy of a personalized fade (that’s why they call these badboys ‘dry denim’—unlike most jeans, they leave the factory unwashed, pure as the driven snow). If they get funky prior to about the six-month mark, Nudie recommends hanging them outdoors to air out, rather than subverting your progress with soap and water. Blow out a giant hole? Nudie would rather toss you a high-five (and a free repair kit) than ask you to start over with a new pair. Check out Nudie’s website for more info and tips.
Without further ado,
here are our five test subjects:
Name: Alex Kostelnik | Expertise: Bikes | Location: Seattle
Gig: Owner, 20/20 Cycle | Breaking In: Thin Finn in Organic Dry Ecru
Name: Dylan Hales | Expertise: Food & Drink | Location: New York City
Gig: Partner, The Randolph Group | Breaking In: Thin Finn in Organic Black
Name: Andy Hayward | Expertise: Music | Location: Chicago
Gig: Tour Manager, Death Cab For Cutie | Breaking In: Grim Tim in Organic Dry Navy
Name: Jonah Buffa | Expertise: Hair | Location: San Francisco
Gig: Partner, Fellow Barber | Breaking In: Thin Finn in Organic Dry Twill (coming soon)
Name: Tyler Wells | Expertise: Caffeine | Location: Los Angeles
Gig: Founder, Handsome Coffee Roasters | Breaking In: Grim Tim in Organic Dry Navy
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Editor’s Picks. Here’s a closer look at a few of the jeans the men above will be breaking in over the months ahead—plus some non-denim items from our multi-faceted friends at Nudie:
L: Nudie Jeans ‘Grim Tim’ Skinny-Fit Jeans (Organic Dry Navy) – side and front views
R: Nudie Jeans ‘Thin Finn’ Skinny-Fit Jeans (Organic Dry Ecru Wash) – back and front views
L: Nudie Jeans ‘Thin Finn’ Skinny-Fit Jeans (Organic Dry Dark Grey) – side and front views
R: Nudie Jeans ‘Thin Finn’ Skinny-Fit Jeans (Black) – side and front views
SHOP ALL: NUDIE JEANS
And tag your own Nudie break-in pics with #BreakingDenim on Instagram—
we might feature your photo on @NordstromMen.
[Dylan Hales and Andy Hayward portraits by Justin Bridges. Other photos via Nudie Jeans and the following Instagram users: @alex2020cycle, @dylanjthales, @fellowbarbersf, @therandolphnyc, @deathcabforcutie, @handsomeroaster, @secretly_important, @ultra1618, @bikebot1, @chuckkerr.]