“While used denim is generally sold at a discount, these particular jeans (The Onomichi Denim Project) actually get about twice as a expensive after being worn by somebody almost daily, for at least a year. […] They hand-pick the wearers from the local community and closely monitor their transformation over the course of one year. Wearers rotate through two pairs of jeans that they promise to wear almost every day for the entire period, and bring them to the shop every week, to be laundered at a special denim processing facility, which ensures that every pair retains the evidence of each wearer’s life and work. […] When the pre-wearing period ends, each pair of jeans is washed according to color, hang-dried or tumbled, checked for individuality, tagged with detailed descriptions and put on sale at the minimalist Onomichi Denim Project boutique for anywhere between ¥25,000 ($215) and ¥48,000 (415). That’s about twice as they usually cost when new, but these are not just any jeans, they are cultural artifacts.”
Yesterday I forced myself to toss the Levis below. The denim is so thin and soft you can poke your finger through the fabric. I keep thinking they’ll dissolve the next time I run them through the wash. Easily 10 or 15 years old. I think we’ll keep them a while longer. They are cultural artifacts, after all.