When It Comes To Raw and Selvedge Jeans It’s All About That Weight

By / Life / March 25th, 2016 / 24

When you’re perusing denim options, you’ll often see what’s called an “ounce count” in the jean’s description. Obviously, this must have something to do with the weight of the denim, but what exactly does this mean? Does the ounce count denote a higher quality jean, or is this just a ploy to get you to buy jeans with a bigger price tag? Read on to discover all you need to know about denim weight and what type of denim is right for you.

The Raw Deal

Raw and selvedge denim are becoming popular options for buyers due to their high quality and durability. In addition, people are increasingly attracted to clothing items that are unique and able to be customized, as opposed to standard, off-the-rack jeans that are identical from one pair to the next. Raw and selvedge jeans provide you with the opportunity to express your individuality, conform to your body and show signs of wear according to your activities and everyday movement — like a canvas that records and displays your personality. When you’re choosing your jeans canvas, the ounce count becomes an important characteristic to consider.

Watching Your Weight

The ounce count of a jean refers to how much one square yard of the denim weighs. For instance, if a pair of jeans is said to have a weight of 12 ounces, this means that one square yard of that type of denim weighs 12 ounces. Simple enough, right?

So what does the ounce count mean when it comes to choosing your jeans? Generally, light jeans (anything under 12 ounces) are easier to break in than heavy jeans, and will feel less stiff. They’re great for warmer weather since the denim can breathe more, but unfortunately, the fading effects that you gain over time will be less drastic than with heavier jeans. Midweight jeans (12 to 16 ounces) and heavy jeans (16 ounces or more) are stiffer and heavier, which makes them a little uncomfortable to wear until they’re broken in. However, the striking fade and wear effects you can achieve is well worth some initial discomfort.

Which Ounce Count is Right for You?

If you’re new to raw and selvedge denim, most people begin with a light or midweight denim for comfort and ease of wear. Denim connoisseurs who desire dramatic fading and prefer quite a bit of stiffness to their jeans should reach for a heavy denim. Whichever you choose, remember to be good to your denim, don’t wash them too frequently and enjoy wearing a unique pair of high-quality jeans.


Photo: Kazuhiro Keino


Contributing writer for Quench Style, Clara loves long walks downtown and enjoying the little things.

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