Yesterday I went shopping with Sasquatch.
To clarify, Sasquatch is a person, not a mythical beast. It’s the nickname I gave Sarah years ago when we worked together.
As those who know me know, I love a good nickname. I fancy myself a cheap imitation of Chris Berman, whom you’ve probably never heard of unless you are old and a sports fan like me. Albert “Winnie the” Pujols is but one example of his handiwork.
Anyway, on Sarah’s first day on the job at OWNP advertising, she was sporting footwear (I believe from the Birkenstock family, an issue in and of itself) that elongated her feet to such an extent that I started calling her Sasquatch. She protested that her feet were merely an average size 8, but no matter, the name stuck like a packing peanut to a damp sweater sleeve.
Sasquatch will always be part of my mid-life lore as not only did she make an appearance on the day of my first date with my now husband, but she was also our lone witness, and photographer, of our wedding at City Hall a few years back. And like that mythical Beast, she hadn’t appeared in years until we reconnected, and has made few appearances since. It’s okay, though. You know how there are people in your life you don’t see much but you still feel an odd connection? That’s Sasquatch. Besides, she’s been busy, as she too has recently married, is in the middle of a house-hunt, and just had her first kid, a boy.
She called me the other day to ask if I’d take her shopping for jeans for her post-baby body.
Combining Sasquatch with shopping? Hells yes. We met in “shoes” at the San Francisco Barney’s.
Jeans are the bane of every woman’s existence. We (at least I) wear them almost every day, and they have the power to make us feel fat (hello too-skinny skinny jeans), mommed out (hello too-high-rise high-rise jeans) or too stumpy (hello too-cropped cropped jeans). It’s a game of inches, not only in how the slightest fraction of one can turn perfect into problem, but also in that our “inch” size is loudly displayed on tags reminding us of our body ups and downs. Not only that, but there is no sizing consistency across brand, let alone across styles within the same brand.
Sasquatch was looking for one pair of jeans that she could wear many ways and to many places. Her list of denim dos:
1. Provide bountiful butt coverage for when she bends down to pick up her boy or a fancy piece of art on her job. This means a mid-rise.
2. Incorporate just enough stretch to allow for all of this bending, without stretching out. This means 2% lycra.
3. Be appropriate for work, after work, and all times in between. This means no distressing and a darker wash.
4. Flatter her body and make her feel pretty. This means long, lean leg cuts, and a light-mid-weight denim that skims the legs. Heavier weights add bulk.
5. Last forever. Which is why we shopped Barney’s for more quality brands known for longevity. And yes, they are a splurge, when you look at cost-per-wear, a great pair of $250 Jeans is worth it. They just are.
Of course when trying on jeans, it’s fun to go “off list” and try things that don’t fit the criteria just because you never know.
One of my favorite parts of the shopping experience is discovering new brands. Sasquatch declared that she wanted to get out of her “Jbrand” comfort zone, so we sought out lines she’d never heard of. Frame is such a brand, and was a “finalist” for favorite. Note her in the Skinny “De Jeanne”, great dark wash, fit. And as I kept waxing on the comfort and cool-factor of R-13, she tried on a boyfriend cut (they didn’t have skinnies in her size).
But the winners were the “Channel seam skinny jeans” from new brand 3×1. We both had never heard of them. Which makes the score even better.
I looked them up as soon as I got home. Turns out 3×1 was founded by Scott Morrison, who also brought us beloved brands Paper Denim & Cloth, Earnest Sewn, and helped re-brand the iconic Japanese brand Evisu in 2009. When I told Sasquatch about the 3×1 background, she explained that she had loved both Paper and Earnest Sewn (Jslow and I practically lived in Earnest Sewn in the late 2000s) so it all made perfect sense.
His mission is “To make the best jeans in the world, one pair at a time.” Not only does he make great jeans, but he also does “bespoke” where you can make an appointment (helps to live in New York!) and he’ll make you a pair.
One of the final selling points for Sasquatch was the panel running down the leg as shown to the left, which gave the jeans a better fit and interesting look. On the 3×1 site, this seam is done in contrasting colors for different looks. You can check them all out here.
So it turns out my annual Big-foot sighting helped me discover a great new brand. And also made me discover I may need to change Sarah’s nickname to something that has a bit more friendship frequency. Any suggestions?
And by the way, turns out there is new evidence that Sasquatch really lived. I’m not kidding. You can read about it here. Maybe he’s still around, looking for a new pair of jeans, too.