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How I Found My Perfect Pair of Vintage Levi’s

Tips and tricks so effective, I've got more than that *one* pair of perfect vintage Levi's.

Everyone knows that my obsession with denim is real. However, while I love new gear as much as the next person, the situation is the complete opposite when it comes to denim. When it is jeans we’re talking about, there is no pair I love more than my vintage Levi’s 505s. The straight leg brings plenty of comfort on lazy days, the slightly high-waist makes t-shirts look more polished and button-downs more casual, and that cropped length looks terrific with a pair of pointed boots. And, because it is vintage, it is already perfectly worn in. None of that fresh denim stiffness.

I believe the phrase “worn to death” is appropriate in describing my relationship with my vintage Levi’s 505s. I tried counting the number of times I’ve worn them in the outfits you see at fashion week and on my Instagram. I gave up counting halfway through.

Like finding the perfect anything, my search for the perfect vintage Levi’s was not completely painless. I have many pairs of forgotten, ill-fitting jeans lying around at home to show for it. To make your search less so, I’ve rounded up a couple of tips and tricks that have helped me in my search below. Have you found your perfect pair? Tell me about it in the comments!



That straight-leg jeans you see all over Instagram? Those are 505s, though I do enjoy the occasional classic 501s. The wonderful thing about Levi’s is that their sizes and cuts are all show clearly on the outside, which helps when you’re going through hundreds of pairs at the store.



If you were watching my Instagram Stories last week, you would have seen snapshots of my vintage shopping escapade in Tokyo’s Shimokitazawa, including one featuring racks and racks of vintage Levi’s. Tokyo is honestly one of my favourite places in the world to shop for vintage Levi’s – vintage anything, really – because I can easily find my size and favourite cut. The denims are also kept in an excellent condition. Check out where we like to shop for vintage in Tokyo here.



It’s always better to try the jeans yourself. Most of my aforementioned forgotten pairs were bought online. If the pair you’re interested in is only available online, pull out the measuring tape. Better to do the work than have your heart broken when the package arrives. Also, if you’re petite or looking for an Asian fit, I feel that it is better to look for your dream vintage Levi’s in Tokyo.



If all else fails and you’re in a spending kind of mood, go for one of the reworked Levi’s jeans by Vetements and Off-White (shop some of our favourites below). They’ve done all the legwork for you and even thrown in a little something on the side, giving you a pair of denims that is almost guaranteed to get those street style photographers clicking.




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