Wednesday, February 5, 2014

A.P.C. Butler Program

APC1WebSo I finally broke down and bought a pair of jeans from the A.P.C. Butler program.  I’ve tried buying faux-aged, faux-washed, faux-faded, faux-whiskered(?) jeans in the past, but they never seem right.  I’d rather wear jeans that someone else broke-in (hopefully not commando style) than a manufactured version.

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  1. phototristan

    February 5, 2014 at 8:36 pm

    I sorta don’t agree with this methodology. I believe you should by your jeans raw and wear them until they are thrashed yourself.

    • barbara seiler

      February 6, 2014 at 1:10 am

      I agree. Real shabbyness is something you have to earn yourself, by loving and wearing an item of clothing until it ages naturally.

      I understand that might be difficult in the high-paced fashion business.

      • robert c harvey

        February 6, 2014 at 5:27 am

        Oh please! Buy new jeans, wear them till dirty, wash; repeat! After a while, they will conform to you personally, and distress naturally according to the uses you put them through in your own life!
        Enough with the deification of denim! It’s work wear people! Blue jeans are one half of the California Tuxedo! (The other half being a white tee shirt!) Make it a tee shirt with a pocket, and you can add a indigo pocket square!

        • Martine

          February 8, 2014 at 11:38 pm

          It hasn’t been simple workwear since before Marilyn Monroe wore jeans to pose for calendar pictures. Where have you been?

      • WOWS

        February 6, 2014 at 7:30 am

        These are pretty well aged!
        +
        Kisses from http://www.withorwithoutshoes.com

        Today I bring you a Comfy outfit with patched skinny jeans….and a Chic pair of pumps!!

    • andreea

      February 6, 2014 at 8:34 am

      yeah! you can’t buy that! :)

      http://littleaesthete.com

    • r

      February 6, 2014 at 6:35 pm

      exactly! buy it raw and break it yourself with your own story!
      even if i am a woman i am all for raw selvedge denim. true that i don’t wear them everyday but i make sure i do when i travel. love the fact that they travel with me to a lot of places in the world.

  2. Spencer

    February 5, 2014 at 8:55 pm

    So, whose jeans were they? They should have initials on the waistband, right?

    I’ve sold one or two pairs back to APC for the Butler program. It’s a weird feeling – kind of like I’m prostituting myself… but at a certain point it’s a lot easier than getting them repaired (or in my case darning them by hand) again.

    S

  3. Adam

    February 5, 2014 at 8:58 pm

    Why not simply buy them raw and break them in yourself?

    • Topol

      February 6, 2014 at 8:00 pm

      Or buy them from any thrift store, including Goodwill.

      • Martine

        February 8, 2014 at 11:44 pm

        Thats what I said!

    • Durr

      February 7, 2014 at 3:04 pm

      Because the whole point is that you don’t have to break them in yourself, they’re already broken in, and look more natural than faux aged denim.

      • Martine

        February 8, 2014 at 11:47 pm

        Thast what a thrift store does. It buys peoples naturally aged clothing…thats what vintage is. In any case, my jeans never get those neat little honeycomb things on the knees or anything like that. All I really get is like the whiskers on the hips, and a paler but, and calf area. Maybe I wear them wrong!

  4. Monsieur Marcel

    February 5, 2014 at 9:19 pm

    The butler wore them? Jeeves can keep ‘em.

    • Katya

      February 6, 2014 at 2:56 pm

      Ha!

  5. Marianne Navada

    February 5, 2014 at 9:46 pm

    I always buy used jeans at Goodwill. Just scored a 7 jeans for $12.99. Enjoy the jeans :)

  6. JV

    February 5, 2014 at 9:48 pm

    i know buying used jeans has been common for a long time now (especially in japan) but just the thought of how many people don’t wear underwear disgusts me so i’ll never buy used jeans. i’d rather break them in myself and never wash them.

  7. John

    February 5, 2014 at 9:57 pm

    I sell APC Butler Program worthy jeans for wayyy cheaper. Check out my auctions.

  8. JoshFromKoreaWithLove

    February 5, 2014 at 10:04 pm

    You could just age them yourself..it doesn’t take much to wear a pair of APC’s to this point and the fading will look better on your body. The APC butler program seems a little ..funny to me but different strokes for different folks.

  9. westcoasttiger

    February 5, 2014 at 10:42 pm

    Wait a second… there seems to be a disconnect here Scott. You feel the manufactured “worn look” is a bit, well, manufactured but taking on the wear-and-tear look as a result of someone else’s sweat equity now feels right? Wow, talk about jockin’ somebody’s lifestyle! I’m all for the idea of salvage but to pay top dollar and surreptitiously slip into someone else’s pants all but refutes the old adage “…walk a mile in someone else’s shoes.”

  10. Jeremy

    February 5, 2014 at 10:49 pm

    The jeans wouldn’t have my story: every crease, every tear, every discoloration. They’re someone else’s.

  11. Alex

    February 5, 2014 at 11:08 pm

    Once you trade in your old jeans, you get 50% off a *new* pair of jeans and can break them in all over again.
    Your old jeans are then sold as ‘already broken in’ jeans.
    So, you’re not trading in old jeans for old jeans (which would be the oddest idea ever).

    • Topol

      February 6, 2014 at 8:03 pm

      I think you missed the point. People are commenting on purchases of used jeans, not the trade-in program.

      • Alex

        February 7, 2014 at 11:11 pm

        Ah! By the time my comment was posted, it got lost in the shuffle. These delayed/approved comment sections can make a dialogue difficult. But you were the smart one who mentioned Goodwill-smart guy (or gal)! :-)

  12. buddy

    February 5, 2014 at 11:46 pm

    I like breaking in the jeans myself. It gives them personal character when it is done like this. But you have to wear them like shoes: all the time.
    http://www.buddysbest.com

  13. sokhorn

    February 6, 2014 at 1:30 am

    wouldn’t the wear and tear be in all the wrong places, seeing how they were formed over time by one individual’s micro-habits?

    at least with faux aging from a decent company (and this is by no means an endorsement because I can’t stand it), all the creasing and fading and holes should be placed in a generalized area for a median body type (assuming that much detail and attention is going into production). Or maybe I’m just assuming too much.

    anyways…

    is there really a group of fashion consumers that has brought retailers to the point where they will sell their own jeans that are not necessarily vintage/heirloom in age but may be rather recent second hand clothing worn by another average consumer, all to obtain a “life-worn” look? and what is with this obsession with the ‘life-worn’ aesthetic? I mean, I do get the appeal of the look (aura of experience, wisdom, edginess, alternative culture, masculinity etc), but come on! how are these APC jeans any more “authentic” than pre worn clothing that is straight from production?

    it’s not antique/heirloom cowboy/miners/logger clothing, it’s not your father’s or your older brother’s clothing, it’s literally clothing sold from a worn-and-torn-for-you perspective and almost completely devoid of the vintage/second-hand niche! WEAR IN YOUR OWN CLOTHES OTHERWISE

    tmi/tldr

  14. TBD

    February 6, 2014 at 2:08 am

    Agree with Adam, buy raw then wear (just like your butler did). Butler is great in theory but these will never look good on you given that they’re moulded to said Butler’s form. Half the fun of raw is the search for the fit, denim, details; the other in the breaking in.

  15. Desiree

    February 6, 2014 at 3:23 am

    That pair looks amazing! love the colour.

    http://desireechoo.blogspot.sg/

  16. Mafalda

    February 6, 2014 at 3:40 am

    I used to trash my jeans myself by wearing them all the time, but now I have so many pairs.
    This pair is gorgeous, love the picture.
    Mafalda ❤
    http://www.mafaldadotzero.blogspot.fr

  17. Christa

    February 6, 2014 at 5:22 am

    My personal meaning is that one should not buy any “broken in” or “destructed” jeans, but break them in yourselves! Have you ever seen the movie/documentary “China Blue”….(and other movies about the same problem) and the horrible circumstances these people work in, and make your jeans look destroyed?? Not to mention the chemicals involved and the harm they do to the people involved and the environment! Below an article from Greenpeace, by all means it is from 2011 but did things get any better since then?

    http://genascihk.com/2011/03/06/the-true-cost-of-trendy-jeans-polluting-water-in-china/

  18. Julie

    February 6, 2014 at 8:40 am

    I’ve sand-washed my jeans before to speed up the aging process. I like that the butler program is recycling worn jeans, why not? We use a lot of cotton to produce denim, might as well recycle what we have.

  19. Sevan

    February 6, 2014 at 10:23 am

    I’d rather “age” my own jeans, I don’t like the idea of getting in somebody else’s pants !

    • dzi

      February 8, 2014 at 2:03 pm

      Me, too.

  20. Jonathan Sanders

    February 6, 2014 at 10:45 am

    wow. what comes around goes around. 30 years ago, the cool jeans were bought used at the flea market. I guess jeans have been so pimped up with this and that, that we are going back to how it’s supposed to be: If they look old, they should be old.

  21. Valerie

    February 6, 2014 at 11:38 am

    Yup, Whiskers! I work in denim :)

  22. Nini piccola

    February 6, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    I could never wear jeans with someone else’s iPhone pocket fade out!

  23. Topol

    February 6, 2014 at 7:59 pm

    There’s something to be said here about the affluence in our society that we would seek jeans broken in by others instead of ourselves, and that we would buy them from an upscale brand rather than a thrift store.

    • debbie

      February 7, 2014 at 9:07 am

      So true. Couldn’t have said it better myself.

    • Tara

      February 7, 2014 at 12:10 pm

      Amen.

    • une chatte grise

      February 8, 2014 at 1:55 am

      Preach!

  24. Stephanie

    February 7, 2014 at 12:01 am

    Admittedly, my first reaction was a bit of eye rolling at the thought of a big company cashing in a second time on their product. But really, why NOT buy a pair of jeans that have been broken in by a fellow human instead of a pair that have been intentionally distressed in a factory? This program is clever marketing, AND it’s environmentally friendly. Reduce REUSE recycle! It would be even better if one of the perks of working at the company was getting free jeans to wear until they were ready to contribute to the program.

    My favorite jeans ever were a pair of my dad’s he gifted me after they were too worn for his liking. Sure, they were free and I loved that they were a very sweet gift from my dad, but I wore them as much as I did because they were soft and comfy and broken-in in the way that only comes from actual wearing.

    • une chatte grise

      February 8, 2014 at 2:04 am

      There’s already a lovely way to reduce, reuse, and recycle clothing: thrift shops. And they make good clothing available to a much wider range of people, economically speaking, to boot.

      • Stephanie

        February 9, 2014 at 10:05 pm

        I’m gonna go out on a limb and guess that Scott knows about thrift shops but has decided that the time and effort thrifting for the perfect pair of jeans would require is time he’d rather spend doing other things… like shooting photos we all enjoy so much. :)

  25. Curtis A.

    February 7, 2014 at 12:27 am

    I don’t like the fact that A.P.C. makes there clothes in Macau, you have to question the working conditions of the factories they are made in. That said, if you end up taking the advice of many on here and decide to break in your own denim, there are better quality denim makers, at equal prices that make there denim in the U.S., Canada or Japan.

  26. ihateuncomfortablejeansandthesehatercomments

    February 7, 2014 at 3:56 am

    My favorite jeans are APC Butler jeans, besides my Chimala. Have you ever tried to wear a new pair of APC jeans? It’s god awful, tight, and uncomfortable as all get out. In the age of instagram and text messaging, it’s hardly surprising that people don’t want to wait. For me, not having to muffin top in tight raw denim jeans for three years was worth every penny. High five Scott! I bet you’re looking great in those perfectly worn jeans.

  27. tallulah

    February 7, 2014 at 4:41 am

    ……and I thought you couldn’t buy style. Apparently you can??

  28. Matt A.

    February 7, 2014 at 5:28 am

    I hope you enjoy my jeans! I think the Butler program is awesome for all parties involved

  29. andrew

    February 7, 2014 at 7:16 am

    Have patience Scott! Purchasing a pair of broken in jeans is not the same as buying raw jeans and letting life and the elements give unique character to them. Personally I wear raw LVC 1947.

  30. Suzanne

    February 7, 2014 at 7:53 am

    Awesome! Maybe you got a pair of my husband’s. He has turned about 4-5 pairs in after they were thoroughly worn, and I always wonder about who purchases them.

  31. tallulah

    February 7, 2014 at 9:43 am

    Are we not born to be an original and not an imprint of another?

    • joesephine

      February 9, 2014 at 1:40 am

      Yeah. But “we” are not jeans. Jeans are “born” on a conveyer line with a billion of clones. Get grip, people.

  32. Ann-Marie

    February 7, 2014 at 11:30 am

    Call me crazy, but it just seems like cheating to buy pants that are distressed by a machine or another person. It’s the relationship you have with an article of clothing over time that makes distressed clothing interesting. Who wants to wear another’s story? Or have it be nothing but the result of some machine and chemicals mindlessly doing something to fabric?

    • Durr

      February 7, 2014 at 3:06 pm

      Do you really believe in that “story” nonsense? They’re jeans. Some people just don’t like the look or feel of store bought denim.

    • Joesephine

      February 9, 2014 at 1:38 am

      Overthinking in a big way. Worn jeans are softer. Thats why people like it. I buy used clothing often, and don’t care whose story I am wearing. I don’t think I will turn into someone else by wearing their jeans. I trust my own originality is not that easily overwhelmed!

      • Ann-Marie

        February 9, 2014 at 3:50 pm

        I buy used clothing all the time and like the fact that there is a history behind them. I never implied wearing used jeans “turns you into someone.” Why not think of what story made that hole or pull in a fabric? And it can be interesting to think about what connects one person to another simply because they like the same article of clothing.But when I wear jeans I love to think about why the knees gave out, or why that bit of paint on the pocket happened. What I won’t do it pay massive amounts of money for something I can do myself. My objection is based on practicality as much as any romantic notion I enjoy thinking about when I wear something.

        • Joesephine

          February 9, 2014 at 9:55 pm

          I shouldn’t have been so flip. A good friend of mine would not purchase amazing antique necklace that she thinks has a”sad”vibe to it, and she really isn’t a crazy person. I have that same feeling about locations. I have passed on reasonable apartments to rent something that felt more “positive” to me. Meaning that somewhere inside I do believe in inanimate objects having a story. And I agree…I’ll get my “storied’ jeans from a thrift shop, at a price that won’t make my story end in debt.

  33. Refind

    February 7, 2014 at 2:02 pm

    Agreed! The more worn in they are, the better….which is why Refind Denim was born.

    Check out our vintage distressed denims: http://www.refinddenim.com

  34. C-MAUR

    February 7, 2014 at 2:04 pm

    It’s clear that people hold different values about jeans, and in particular selvage denim. It is a fact that you will get more natural whiskering and fading from a pair that you have worn from raw yourself. For some people this matters a great deal more than it does to others. If it matters less, then a Butler program OR other pre-distressed pair is for you.

  35. J

    February 7, 2014 at 2:15 pm

    You cannot purchase authenticity. Ever.

  36. Lady ID

    February 7, 2014 at 7:16 pm

    My first time hearing of this and I find it…odd and weird.

    I break mine in myself. Currently wearing a pair I’ve had for like 12+ years – I’m glad it still fits.:)

  37. Lady ID

    February 7, 2014 at 7:20 pm

    Then again I think most of my premium jeans have had like 2% stretch. Regardless, I would be weirded out by wearing pre-worn trousers:)

  38. nate

    February 7, 2014 at 9:43 pm

    is it possible to purchase jeans from the butler program online?

  39. kingesquivel

    February 8, 2014 at 7:35 am

    I have several pairs of Nike shoes worn into the ground from my heavy use. This could be a gold mine!

    • Martine

      February 8, 2014 at 11:38 pm

      LOL!

  40. Martine

    February 8, 2014 at 11:40 pm

    Why not simply go to Goodwill, and purchase some vintage jeans? I do it all the time.

  41. d

    February 9, 2014 at 3:06 am

    goodwill, this is crazy

    • westcoasttiger

      February 9, 2014 at 8:55 pm

      I’m assuming your incredulity stems from the idea a consumer actually setting foot in a Goodwill store. Two things: first, I think there are many examples shown on this blog that perfectly exemplify fashion and style sense are often more about individuality and less about price tags and/or designer labels; second, some Goodwill stores have undergone a total facelift and now cater to the smart shopper rather than just moms trying to clothe their kids. Goodwill is a lot closer to a “street” sensibility than the often silly European runways.

  42. joesephine

    February 9, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    Thank the Heaven that APC doesn’t come in high waist, and I don’t wear low. Makes it easy for me to know to ignore the whole thing.

  43. ita darling

    February 11, 2014 at 7:42 am

    I once had a really wealthy friend who had beautiful taste in clothes and shoes.. we wore the same size and she let me borrow things regularly because she bought to excess.

    At one point- she lent me a beautiful pair of brand new LD Tuttle boots, and I asked her “are you concerned about me scuffing them? They are so beautiful and so expensive, I will never be able to replace them if I mess them up”..

    Her response was amusing but also prescient to her true feelings about me as a friend and also I guess what led to the eventual demise of our “friendship”… she said “oh I once read an article about a certain eccentric French designer who lent his clothes to peasants in the village where his country house so that his clothes would be authentically worn in, and in my case I like my boots to look authentically worn in- so in essence YOU are my peasant.”

    For me, In the case of the Butler Denim Program- I love the Look and the Idea of authentically worn in jeans, but the smack of Noblesse Oblige also makes me realize that as much as I love fashion I also love Authenticity- which is the reason why I buy real leather, real goods, and real designers..

  44. Dale Janee @Savvy_Spice

    February 12, 2014 at 10:17 am

    Nice post although I think I’d prefer to break in my own denim too or like one commented said checking out a 2nd hand store for a pair. San Franicso’s Mission district is perfect for this. :)

    -Dale

  45. David

    February 14, 2014 at 1:38 am

    I think too many people are hating on this. A.P.C. denim is very challenging to break in for a lot of people. Coming from a purely aesthetic perspective – indigo is beautiful when it is broken and washed through wear. And it’s a whole hell of a lot better than manufactured distress. In regards to the “noblesse oblige”, I get it, but what does it have to do with the fact that Scott bought a pair of beautiful jeans that he loves? I don’t blame A.P.C. for the system of capitalism. It’s a great way for loyal customers to get a price-cut actually. I get it, but I also can’t take it too seriously. This is a fashion blog, and those jeans look great.

  46. botim

    March 5, 2014 at 2:58 pm

    I send my used Wranglers to the Smithsonian.

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