I really love denim. You’ll get to see with this new series of posts, my fascination with quality indigo cotton from all price points and origins.
Starting off, we have the new(ish) pair of 511™ Commuter jeans from Levi’s. The ones pictured here are actually the second generation in Levi’s attempt at making cycling-specific clothing that is both wearable and modern. I was fortunate enough to receive one of the first pairs from Austin’s only fixed-gear focused bike shop; FAST FOLKS. The initial impression was good; finally, a nice pair of well made denim that was appropriate for riding a bike in, but there was some flaws in the original design. First, the cut of the prototypes were way skinnier than a regular pair of 511™’s, it was much more like their 510™ Super Skinny, and even though the wash was labelled “Rigid”, they were too stretchy and cheap feeling. The special pocket liner meant to hold your MP3 player was more of an annoyance than a convenience, and the U-lock holder was too big to hold any pocket size locks that I’ve used.
But fortunately for us, all these little things have been worked out. The new official models are a much nicer denim, with a great balance of lightness and movement, as well as having nice rigidness to them. The crotch is double layered to prevent premature wear and thankfully, no more MP3 holder. They are a deeper indigo with subtle silver undertones and despite a couple of unexpected rides in the rain, and some pretty warm humid weather, they have managed to stay dark and clean with it’s NanoSphere® treatment, and fairly unoffensive by means of their odor-resistant Sanitized® protective finish.
The U-lock storage on the waistband is better suited to a variety of lock sizes, and the 3M® reflective banding on the inside seams adds a nice selvedge-looking touch to an all around great pair of jeans.