Learning the art of shopping for jeans

Blue jeans are the most beautiful things since the gondola.

Diana Vreeland

I’m not the best clothes shopper. I find shopping exhausting and depressing, because I find it difficult to see through the mass of clothes that aren’t suitable for me. I’ve got better in recent years as I’ve learnt more about the colours and style of clothes that suit me; but there are still so many changing rooms to face…

However, there are times when shopping has to be done; and this time it was an urgent need for replacement jeans

My old jeans

It is great that I got back into my pre-pregnancy jeans fairly quickly after having Matthew. But I knew they were not great for me because the low waist highlighted my mummy tummy and they were too short; however, they were comfortable and  I liked the embroidery. Plus I already owned them, so I wore them until I got holes in the seams. Okay I admit I kept wearing them for quite a while after noticing the holes.

Learning to shop

After having a style consultation and reading books such as Colour me confident and Trinny and Susannah, I know I want bootleg jeans to balance my hips. I thought the shape was all I need to know, but thanks to Pinterest I discovered there are many more things to consider when finding the perfect pair of jeans. The two posts I found really informative are both on Grasping for objectivity in my subjective life (Post 1 On the Proper Fitting of Jeans, Post 2 Mom Jeans and the Dreaded “Long Butt”).

I’d never thought about the back pockets before, but it appears they are key; their size, position and decoration. Plus the colour of the stitching and the colour changes in the denim material.

Implementing my learning

There were so many points to remember that I started by browsing online so I could refer backs to the blog posts. This narrowed down the shops to visit and helped me stay focused because I was not going home until I bought a new pair of jeans (or the shops shut).

I tried on jeans in four shops and found it much quicker to decide if they were for me by asking myself a few questions:

  • Is my tummy coming over the waist band?
  • Can I move comfortably?
  • Is the hem down to my shoes?
  • Do the pockets start on my bottom?
  • Do they finish below the curve?

The purchased jeans

The pair I bought are GAP Perfect Boot Jeans.  I recognise they are not perfect because I’d like the pockets to be a bit smaller and lower, but a big improvement on my old pair; not bad for two hours of shopping.

Comparison of jeans


The key thing I’ve learnt is to check my rear view in the mirror more often!

How do you approach your shopping trips? Have you recently learnt any tips that help you buy more appropriate clothes?


Kate Davis (397 Posts)

Kate is a working mum of two children, with a desire to do a wide range of things from writing to video editing. I know to achieve all these interests I need to be as productive as possible. Facts about Kate: I get great pleasure using spreadsheets, I’m teaching myself Photoshop Elements, I learnt sign language to use with my children before they could speak, I’ve written a journal for over 25 years, I dream of publishing a novel and I've written this blog for over 7 years.

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  1. Posted May 28, 2013 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

    Some really helpful tips here, thank you! I hate buying jeans. My problem is that they always gape at the back. I never thought about looking at the pockets either, but it makes such a difference. I recently found a pair in Sainsbury’s that fit really well so I need to go back and stock up. I get through jeans so quickly because they are always going on the knees, I spend too much time crawling about on the floor with small children!

    • Posted May 29, 2013 at 10:15 pm | Permalink

      Yes I get gaping at the back as well; I wear a belt and keep pulling it tighter and tighter to try and pull it in. It has never occurred to me to look at jeans at Sainsbury’s, where do you try them on? I always wear mine on the inner seams, maybe I’m not crawling on the floor enough!

      • Posted May 30, 2013 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

        There should be a changing room in Sainsbury’s, I usually have a child in the trolley but there should be one of the rooms that is large enough to keep the trolley in with you.

        • Posted June 1, 2013 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

          I’m sure there aren’t changing rooms at the one we normally go to, just toilets. However now we’ve moved house apparently there is a HUGE Sainsbury’s not far away, maybe I’ll have to try that one.

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