Clothes are meant to be worn. And I don’t just mean in the literal sense. Clothes should to be worn, and worn in. Every fade, every fray, every stain—they tell a story, no matter how mundane.
In our world of disposable pleasures, however, we’ve lost that sense. Things get lightly used, and then they are discarded. Things that we love one day, only to forget the next when something newer or shinier is there to take its place. Part of that has to do with the fact that—and I know this sounds like a cliché—things just are not built to last, and the clothing industry is especially guilty of this sin. Everything is mass-produced, meant to satisfy for a season before falling apart. We've been conditioned to this new normal, and we've accepted it as a fact of life.
But there are some brands doing it right, making clothes that can be worn hard. Clothes that can last years, and with each passing wear look better and better. Case in point, a pair of 501s from Levi’s Vintage Clothing—a line that reproduces garments the way they were made over half a century ago. The denim starts out raw—dark blue without any distressing. They’re unsanforized, so the first wash will shrink the jeans to tagged size. They’ll be stiff for quite a while, but eventually they’ll soften up and mold to your body. They’re a pain to break in at first, but for the next three years they’ll be your favorite pairs of jeans.
That’s the way we should wear our clothes, and it’s not just jeans. Let them fray; let them stain. Let them tear, and then patch up those tears. Wear them until you cannot wear then anymore. Clothes are meant to be worn, until they’re not.