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Thread: Gap Selvedge Straight Fit jeans - will they shrink?

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    Gap Selvedge Straight Fit jeans - will they shrink?

    Hi,

    So I got these Gap Selvedge Straight fit jeans during their last sale. I'm usually between sizes at gap (35-36 x 31), but these fit great (they make 'em extra long to roll the cuff, which I prefer not to do). The instructions on the web site say dry clean only, the little tag on the jeans says "never wash", and internet denim wisdom says wash gently, cold, and inside-out. Reviews on them at gap.com say not to wash them, but they're not at all clear on why (I.E. "They're useless if you wash them"). I'm trying to figure out if that means they'll shrink like unsanforized jeans, if there's something weird / wonky about how they're made / cut, or if there's something else going on. Did anyone else grab these earlier / have you already cleaned them? Any specific advice about these?

    Thanks!

    Link to these jeans

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    Varsity Member mattface's Avatar
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    Nope. Not much anyway. If they are anything like my last pair of Gap Selvedge (last years version), though, they might just fall apart in a matter of weeks.

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    Super Moderator LesserBlackDog's Avatar
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    Raw denim is not preshrunk. If you wash them, even in cold water, they are likely to shrink somewhat. If you wash them in warm or hot water or dry them in a dryer, they are likely to shrink a LOT.

    I'm hardly a raw denim expert, but the one of the points of raw denim is that the dye has not set. Thus, as you wear them over time, they will fade dramatically and the shape of the jeans will conform to your body. Once you wash them, even in cold water, the excess dye will wash away and the remaining dye will "set," therefore preventing the supposedly desirable natural fading process from occurring to the same degree. I say "supposedly" desirable because frankly, I'm not sure that's a way of wearing denim that a lot of Dappered readers will necessarily subscribe to - I'm pretty sure a lot of us here are bigger fans of the unfaded, dark wash look. Anyway, that's what the reviewers are probably referring to when they say washing makes the jeans "useless," since it halts the kind of break-in and fading process seen below.

    Here are a couple images showing the results:



    Ben

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    LBD - I totally get that with raw denim (or rather, I get it well enough to know that I'm not ready to mess with it). I'm asking mostly about these jeans in particular, and other similar ones, because it's not clear to me that it's really raw (I think it's sanforized, or whatever the non-shrink-process is). I have a pair of older gap selvedge from last year (like mattface's, though mine're holding up okay), and they haven't shrunk either (but those are with the generally-acknowledged-to-be-crappier-denim).

    And yeah - I know I need to wash cold / hang-dry.

    I'm part of the unfaded-dark-preferring set of dappered readers, but I can get down with some fading, if it looks good. I just wanted to make sure that they wouldn't shrink, since too-short jeans are pretty useless for me.

    Thanks!

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    Varsity Member mattface's Avatar
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    Actually raw denim may be sanforized or unsanforized. Sanforized will not shrink much. Gap does not sell any unsanforized Denim. My last years Gap Raws did indeed show the fade characteristics of raw denim, before the ass blew out on week 6, but they did not shrink apreciably in the wash. I would still recomend only washing denim on cold and hang drying, but even if you toss it in the dryer on high, you will not see as much shrinkage as you would get from unsanforized.

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    I have a pair of the Gap Selvage, I'm pretty sure it's the same pair you linked to (I bought them in store about a month ago). I haven't washed them yet, but I did soak them in cold water before wearing them and the inseam probably shrank between 0.5"-1" but I didn't notice any other areas shrinking.

    I normally wear a 32 inseam but bought these in a 30 inseam since I don't cuff my jeans either. At first they were pretty much the same length as my other pairs of jeans, after soaking they were a little bit shorter but not to the point where they're too short.

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    Nick - Thanks, that's very helpful.

    As further visual aid, and because I haven't worn correctly-fitting denim in a long time, if ever, I'd like to ask if these look too short / about the right length.

    Image is about 2 megabytes, as a warning:

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    Dappered Veteran Vicious49's Avatar
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    I'm with LBD. I really don't want the whiskering and fading. I want the jeans to stay looking dark and unfaded but was going to avoid washing them because I didn't want to lose all the dye. In my case would it be better to wash them in cold early on so even though I lose a bit of color I won't get the whiskering?

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    No problem, those look good to me but it's really just personal preference. Some people like their jeans to barely touch their shoes, some like to wear them a little longer and let them stack. Like I said they'll probably shrink at least 0.5" when you soak/wash them so consider that when deciding if you like the length.

    @Vicious, these are actually my first pair of raw/selvage jeans so I don't really have any experience with fades/whiskering yet. Matt might be able to answer your question

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    Varsity Member mattface's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vicious49 View Post
    I'm with LBD. I really don't want the whiskering and fading. I want the jeans to stay looking dark and unfaded but was going to avoid washing them because I didn't want to lose all the dye. In my case would it be better to wash them in cold early on so even though I lose a bit of color I won't get the whiskering?
    You know Vicious, if you don't wear your jeans a lot it will take a LONG time before you start to see fading. I wear mine a LOT, and am only just starting to see that after 3 months. To put it in perspective, I'm wearing my jeans almost every day, so figure 5-6 times a week. So say 60 wears in 3 months. That's over a year if you're averaging once a week.

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