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Article: What is Raw Denim?

What is Raw Denim - Danali - Winnipeg, Canada

What is Raw Denim?

Raw denim is a type of jean fabric that has not been pre-washed or pre-treated in any way. It is typically made from 100% cotton and is left in its natural state, which gives it a unique look and feel. 

Man wearing Raw Denim - Danali - Winnipeg, Canada

Raw denim is often considered to be the highest quality denim available and is prized for its durability, comfort, and style. Many people believe that it provides the best fit and wear-ability, making it a popular jean choice among fashion-savvy individuals. It’s a blank canvas for you to create your own unique fades and wear patterns.

If you're thinking about adding a raw denim piece to your wardrobe, read on for everything you need to know about this unique fabric.

History of Raw Denim and How It's Evolved Over the Years

The history of raw denim can be traced all the way back to the early 1800s when it was first used for horse blankets and tents. It wasn't until the late 1800s that raw denim began to be used for jeans, and it quickly became a popular choice among cowboys and miners because of its durability and comfort.

In the early 1900s, denim began to be mass-produced and became more widely available. This led to a decline in the popularity of raw denim, as consumers began to prefer pre-washed jeans that were softer and less stiff.

However, raw denim made a comeback in the 1970s when Japanese designers experimented with new ways to treat and wash the fabric. This helped to create a new market for its fashion-savvy consumers who were looking for something unique and high quality.

Raw denim has continued to evolve over the years, and today there are many different ways to wear and style it. 

Different Types of Raw Denim

Selvedge Denim: which comes from the term ‘self-edge’  is made the old-fashioned way by weaving the cotton with tightly woven edges, which helps prevent the fabric from fraying.

Japanese Denim: One of the highest quality denims in the world. It is known for its quality and durability. It is often treated with various washes and treatments, which gives it a unique look and feel.

Raw Denim: The most popular and accessible type, commonly made from 100% cotton and has not been washed or treated in any way.

What Makes Raw Denim Different From Other Types of Denim

Raw denim is different from other types of denim because it has not been pre-washed or pre-treated. This means that raw denim is rigid, like a blank canvas, allowing the wearer themselves to break them in and create unique fades and wear patterns. It also means that the fabric typically lasts longer and ages better over time. It has a unique look and feel and it is said to be the highest quality denim. It is also prized for its durability, comfort, and style. 

Raw Denim and Selvedge Denim

"Selvedge" comes from "Self-Edge" and although selvedge denim is closely associated with raw denim, that is not always the case. Selvedge refers to a type of jeans produced on machines called shuttle looms that create a natural (self) edge that won't fray. Selvedge denim is known for its superior quality and durability.

The quality, durability, and unique characteristics of selvedge and raw denim, is why many denim heads and enthusiasts seek out raw selvedge denim. 

How to Care for Your Raw Denim Jeans, So They Last Longer

Raw denim requires special care in order to maintain its quality and avoid any damage. Here are a few tips:

  • Wash your jeans infrequently, inside out in cold water and hang them to dry.
  • Do not bleach or iron your jeans.
  • Don't put them in the dryer. This will cause them to shrink and lose their shape.
  • Hang them up to air out after wearing them rather than folding them in a drawer. This will help to prevent odors from building up.
  • Use a denim brush or sponge to remove dirt and stains.

If you are looking to add a touch of luxury to your everyday look, consider investing in a pair of raw denim jeans. You won’t be disappointed!

Related Article: A Complete Guide To Denim Jeans

Shop our collection of Raw Denim below

At Danali we hand pick the denim we love and would wear ourselves. We specialize in raw denim and selvedge denim from popular brands Nudie Jeans, Naked and Famous Denim, and exclusive Japanese denim brands Momotaro Jeans and Pure Blue Japan.

We offer complimentary hemming on all regular priced jeans purchased from Danali.

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