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Hi, I am new to the denim scene. I used to always just buy whatever's on sale in the stores.
What would be the difference between raw denim and non-raw denim?
Raw denim has not been factory washed/faded. Raw denim comes with a higher amount of dye in it (because it has not been "washed" out) which results in, at first, stiffer pants that have a tendency to rub off dye on light colored shoes and furniture. These two qualities, and the price point, tend to turn a lot of people away from buying it. I believe the dye issue is really the only problem with raw denim, but there are ways around it: @IanAnderson washed his in the tub in order to reduce it (will result in less drastic fading though as once they have been washed they are no longer "raw"), and one can cuff the bottoms to decrease dye transfer to your shoes and even completely prevent it (this method allows you to show off that awesome selvage too!). As with anything else you get what you pay for- a $150 pair of jeans will last you much longer than a $30 pair, and there will certainly be a noticeable difference in the quality of its materials and manufacturing. Another plus to raw denim is that because they have not been factory washed, as you wear them they will begin to fade, create "whiskers" on the thighs, and "honeycombs" behind the knees- resulting in a one of a kind pant that has achieved that always-desired faded and worn out look from you, and not from a machine that someone programmed to try and replicate it at a factory. I would do some research on raw denim first in order to give you a better idea of whether or not the concept of owning raw denim appeals to and suits you, as it is in a completely different ballpark to your everyday pair of jeans. Oh yeah, and a lot of people will think you're crazy for spending $100+ on a "pair of jeans"- don't listen to them, it's worth it!
Hope this helps you and others to make a decision- I will certainly be joining the drop soon!