Denim jeans have come along way since their inception. A Nevada tailor stitched the first pair in the late 1800’s at a housewife’s request. She simply wanted a pair of durable pants for her husband to wear while chopping wood. That tailor, Jacob Davis, decided to use copper rivets to secure the pockets and other places where threads usually gave way. Before he knew it, every wife and worker were knocking on his door for a pair.

With his sewing machine smoking from so many orders, Davis realized he needed help. So, he turned to fabric manufacturer Levi Strauss, from whom he had been buying the denim material. Strauss, lived in San Francisco to supply fabrics to workers in the gold rush. He saw the true gold as he sifted through Davis’s denim pant design. Soon, he and Davis were in business and the rest is history!

Since those days of the old west, jeans have become a symbol of rebellion, sex appeal, and of course fashion. The 70’s gave birth to the designer jean, as Vanderbilt and Jordache discoed through the decade. In the 80’s, nothing came between Calvin Klein as the reigning denim king. In the 90’s, Gap, Hilfiger, and Z. Cavaricchi kicked it cool.

As we turned into a new millennium, the denim game kicked into high gear with brands like 7 For All Mankind and Diesel. Price tags skyrocketed,  waistbands went down, and the spandex content went up killing the dreaded “mom jeans” and creating the equally dreaded “muffin top.”

Since the wild west, denim jeans have spun more gold than Strauss could have ever imagined. And while Levi’s are still as desired as the day the first copper rivets were fastened, there are now endless brands and cuts to choose. Price points can range from $10 to $1000.00, depending on the brand. Here are the top five designer jean brands we think you need to know in 2018.

Designer Jeans You Need To Know

Rag & Bone

We love Rag & Bone Jeans so much we pictured them in our cover photo. Why do we love Rag & Bone jeans? Mostly, because of their “behind”, the scenes help. There is something about the pocket placement and the soft stretch that make the Brittish born jeans extra flattering. Hovering around $225 a pair, we’d expect nothing less.

Mother Denim

This hipster brand is all about juxtaposition. The name Mother Denim comes from the dual meaning of the word “Mother.” Used both as a term of endearment and a swear, Mother Denim is all about playing both naughty and nice. Prices range from about $198 to $300.

Frame Denim

We took a quick poll from our fashionista friends on what designer jeans would be the first pair packed in a suitcase. Almost all of the ladies named Frame Denim as their first choice. The LA-based and European-inspired brand has a cut made for everyone, hovering around $200 a pair. We are digging the new cuts being introduced in 2018, like these ruffle cuffed jeans. They definitely make us want to tip-toe through the tulips!


Listen up, girlfriends, there is a brand new name in the denim game! She’s easy to slide into with ten different cuts for every different shape. GRLFRND Denim jeans are a throwback to the supermodel. Think of Claudia in her Guess or Cindy Crawford chillin’ on MTV’s House of Style. These jeans take you back, but with fabric blends that make them wearable today. You’ll definitely want to check out all the different cuts. Prices range from $200 to $400; although, we’ve seen some killer sales on their website.


A favorite among celebrity style mavens, L’AGENCE Denim makes being chic easy. The soft denim and cool details are totally Parisian but designed in L.A. The style and comfort of these pretty baby blues will cost you. Expect to pay at least over $250 for a little bit of denim elegance.

So, that’s our denim recap for early 2018! Stay tuned for our denim cut guide!


The Haute Life