This perfect union is still clinging on for dear life around my shapely buttocks. Purchased almost five years ago these jeans hug, flare, slip and ride my legs in a delightfully indecent manner. Such is their power that wearing them I feel I could conjugate the above verbs into any context with any man who takes my fancy, and I’m not just talking about Advanced Level Grammar classes here people. This is saucy stuff.
Sadly however, having seen me through thick and thin these jeans are now mostly just experiencing the thin. Predominantly around the sculpted derriere area. Indeed, the area classified as “completely fucking worn through– I can see your arse flapping out” by Straight Best Friend has spread in recent weeks from crotch to hip pocket, fuelling a fear that my Suppressed Homo is attempting to break free via the medium of home-made chaps. In an attempt to avoid this horror and in acknowledgement that my relationship with torn trousers is a little relaxed, I ventured out to buy a new pair.
I will not bore you with the details of my inability to find a suitable repurchase. Suffice to say it was a complete fucking car-crash of a day and the manager of GAP will require reconstructive surgery. Upon my return home Design Partner listened patiently to my woes, made a sad puppy-dog face, and announced that the solution was obvious; we needed to start an online custom-made jeans company! Of course! Sometimes I wonder how so much entrepreneurial genius fits into such a travel-ready package.
A quick internet search later and we had learned two things. 1) There were already plenty of companies like this catering for Americans who had passed beyond the “Elasticated Waistbands = Bad” threshold back when they ate the family dog in ‘98, and 2) there was only one company in the UK, a certain “Jean Machine”. With two denim-clad ladies trapped in a wind tunnel on their homepage we could see they had the custom-made jean business sewn up in contrasting stitch detailing, so we gave up on the business plan and settled in to order me my Perfect Jeans.
Step One: choose your style. No worries here, although Design Partner was slightly disconcerted that there were 11 styles on offer yet only eight images. Also one picture appeared to be of a Levi jean. Hmmm. Moving swiftly on.
Step Two: choose your material. Ah this we can do. Real-posh-looking-yet-remarkably-cheap-dark-denim please. We is on a budget here. Sadly that particular choice was not available so we went for not-quite-as-Eurovision-nasty-looking-as-the-others blue.
Step Three: take your measurements. We started with my waist, which I am pleased to say has been a gentlemanly 32 inches since puberty. The tape measure, however, seemed to indicate an actual size of 36 inches, which earned Design Partner a thorough beating for his clumsiness. 36 inches indeed. Astonishingly, repeat measurements confirmed that thirty-six was indeed correct. It seems the fashion industry doesn’t understand the use of units of distance as a measure of say, actual distance, but rather as a series of funny shapes to make that dull patch on the inside of the waistband look pretty. Genius. I tip my hat to them.
Next, Design Partner had to measure my ‘seat’, defined as the fattest part of your arse. It’s lucky he doesn’t resemble a woollen Adonis put through the hot cycle one too many times, or I might have found the whole whipping a tape around my buttocks in my pants a tad erotic. As it was there was a tense moment when he suggested that the measuring tape shouldn’t be cutting valleys into my derriere, and I snapped back that I most certainly did not have a 39-inch arse so some cutting was inevitable, but we worked through it.
I also had to specify whether I wanted a ‘custom’, ‘normal’, ‘low waist’ or ‘high waist’ design. This was to define where the jeans were to sit on my waist using the belly button as a convenient navigational aid. Thus ‘normal’ was defined as “when you wear your jeans on the belly button.” ‘Low waist’ was “two inches below the belly button.” Seriously? A quick check revealed that Design Partner’s jeans sat three inches below his umbilicus, and mine a heady five inches below. I was practically wearing them as socks. Most alarmingly of all, one could order the “high waist” design for those above-the-naval statement pieces. Ideal for incontinence pads and first dates.
Finally we had to measure something called the ‘front rise.’ Neither of us knew what this was so we clicked on the helpful illustrative jpeg. Up popped this beauty.
Design Partner suddenly looked a bit flushed. I worried whether our relationship could survive him holding the tape measure thusly. Both of us were glad the young lady had chosen to wear her jeans for the demonstration, for fear of losing her tape.
And then, just as suddenly as we had begun we were at the checkout! A few more clicks and denim paradise would be mine! While I warmed up the credit card Design Partner went off to find some online reviews from other satisfied “Jean Machine” customers. He soon found this gem:
I sent Jean Machine £127 and my favourite jeans to make me two new pairs. This was eight weeks ago, I haven’t heard from them since and they won’t reply to my emails! Help!
Ah. That’s a little unfortunate. Design Partner followed this up with a call to their helpline which was, ahem, disconnected. Dreams. Floor. Shattered.
So I’m back to square one. My favourite jeans are threatening to subdivide into cropped shorts and leg-warmers, and I have no backup solution. Things are looking bleak.
On the plus side however, what I do have from this little journey is a selection of photos sent in by satisfied customers of makeyourownjeans.com. When the Day Of Jean Death finally arrives I shall be able to look back at these and console myself with the knowledge that even in my denim, home-made chaps I have got it over this lot. Enjoy.
"Brian, wearing Makeyourownjeans.com's Jeans and Denim Shirt, Jeans with extra length was requested."
I bet it was, the saucy minx.
"Sonja is wearing low rise Jeans made by Makeyourownjeans.com, she has ordered a Brazilian Style Add-On #105."
I do hope Sonja got a discount on her second purchase.
"David is wearing a Skinny Tight tapering fit Pussy Cat Dark Wash jeans with a 7-inch front rise and a heart-shaped back pocket with embroidery. He insisted on a very very skin tight fit."
Oh. Dear. God.
No Chase. No. Bad boy.