When blue jeans were first invented by Levi Strauss in 1873, few could've predicted the future of the humble denim pants.
Initially, Strauss’ design was intended to be worn by cowboys and miners because the sturdiness of denim offered greater protection from the elements than other common fabrics.
In the 1950s, new jean styles and cuts were introduced to the general public and marketed as casual everyday wear. The rest, as they say, is history.
Today, jeans are the world’s universal uniform; the quintessential component of casual dress.
Though Levi’s remains the most recognizable name in the world of denim, the centuries-old company has a lot of competition.
Most can’t compare to the classic — but one new denim brand can, and it's about to change the way we shop for our baby blues in a major way.
DSTLD Denim, a new “lifestyle brand” based out of Los Angeles, boasts a “direct-to-customer business model,” which means the company controls every aspect of the jeans’ lifecycle, from manufacture to sales and everything in between.
In keeping up with the American roots of DSTLD Denim's sole product (jeans), 95 percent of production happens on US soil.
In the often corrupted world of fast-fashion and foreign labor, this company breaks the mold.
So why does this matter?
By cutting out middlemen and third parties, DSTLD can afford to sell at wholesale prices -- nothing is over $100.
Saving money allows the brand to spend on sustainable, eco-friendly materials, giving the customer high-quality products that cost up to seven times less than their competitors. DSTLD is the only denim brand on the globe that follows this business model, making it truly one-of-a-kind.
But its unique direct-to-consumer approach is groundbreaking for a much more significant reason: It suggests a dismissal of fast-fashion practices, providing an opportunity for consumers to participate in ethical consumption.
Since all of DSTLD’s products are manufactured in North America — 95 percent of production takes place in LA — the brand avoids sourcing cheap foreign labor for production.
Manufacturing domestically also creates jobs, which aids the American economy.
But, most importantly, domestic labor means fair labor. Far too many brands rely on cheap foreign labor for production, leading to unfair and often inhumane business practices as few nations have labor regulations as comprehensive as the United States.
Perhaps you remember the Nike foreign-labor scandal some years back, which publicized the dark underbelly of the garment manufacturing industry that relies heavily on sweatshops? Instead of taking the easy route, DSTLD promotes morality and commitment to ethical responsibility that's rarely, if ever, seen in mainstream fashion.
Plus, the jeans themselves, which are available in a range of sizes and lengths, are damn good and fit like a dream.
In the end, what more could you really want from your go-to denim brand?