Balenciaga Archetype Jeans – A Step Too Far?

When it comes to designer denim, one of the things we buy it for is the fit obviously, but on par with that are the washes. I often really don’t like the bland, flat, dull washes that cheaper, high street jeans come with as you can tell they are purely manufactured by machine and aren’t actually designed with the wearers body in mind, like designer jeans are.

Our premium counterparts are made with the whiskering fitting the contours of the lap, honeycombs accentuating the backs of the knees, fading down the thighs which actually slims the legs rather than highlights them etc. Everything is usually done by hand in LA wash houses and with expertise, giving us some of the most authentic and worn in washes that you could imagine.

When I saw these Balenciaga Archetype jeans here though, I was actually shocked. I’m a huge fan of the fashion house usually (I love their bags and shoes) and their denim is often really cool, with some amazing washes (these are an example of that) but what happened with these? This is the description of them:

Appealing to an ’80s silhouette, the Archetype jeans from Balenciaga are crafted from heavy duty cotton denim, taking a slack straight leg with a high rise, a waistband with belt loops, a button and zip fly, a five pocket design and a stonewashed effect.

And while I get that they are ‘trying’ to give a nod to the 80’s with these jeans, are they actually serious? These 100% cotton jeans will set you back £280, which I find scary. I’m used to the price tag of around $200 or £200 for premium jeans from my favourite brands, but this is pretty expensive compared to that. In all honesty, these are the type of jeans that you would find at the market for $5 or $10 and the same type of jeans that look like they’re manufactured in China on a line of machines with zero thought into what’s going on with the wash here.

I’m actually shocked by them. Their other jeans with beautiful washes are around £500, which kind of proves my point in that fact that these cost them barely anything to make and barely any time, given that the price is almost cut in half. That says something. And it can’t be because they’re cheaper that they’re this bad, I mean other brands get it perfectly right for less than what Balenciaga are charging.

I know not everyone takes the washes seriously, or can tell a huge amount of difference, but you denim lovers will know what I’m referring to. I’m having a hard time understanding how Balenciaga can justify this price tag, and justify making this kind of denim, when it’s so bad? They literally look like they cost a few pounds to make and they just found an old pair of jeans lying around and decided to copy them, before quality, fit, and style was a thing.

It’s not only the washed out blue that I don’t like, but it’s that lap whiskering that I just can’t get my head around. It’s completely straight and so unrealistic. I mean these jeans didn’t look good in the 80’s, so why on earth would they look good now? I’m hoping it was somewhat a joke on the designers behalf, just to see how many Balenciaga fans would actually buy and wear them. Surely it has to be, right?

I’ve really seen some crazy jeans over the last couple of years, which I have pointed out because the designs have been getting silly, but I’ve never actually wanted to comment on a jean specifically for its wash before. I’m generally a positive person, and like I said, I love Balenciaga as I own a few pieces from them, but I just can’t understand this. What’s your thoughts on this wash? Am I just alone in my feelings towards those lap whiskers?

Click here to check these Balenciaga Jeans out on



  1. rachelratz
    December 5, 2018 / 1:39 pm

    Don’t like the wash at all. I’m accustumed to the $200 jean. That’s about average what I pay for Frame & 3X1 jeans in the U.S. I expect my jeans to have deep saturated color and undertones along with the whiskering that dances along the jean. High waist and straight is how I like my jeans, but this just hangs on the body. I want a jean that looks…lively. Not something blalnd.

    • Lorna
      December 5, 2018 / 3:40 pm

      I’m glad you feel the same way. I was so shocked by them!

  2. Lu
    December 5, 2018 / 10:10 pm

    Jeans are supposed to be flattering and these are not. Women’s jeans only looked good back in the 80s because of the dark blue dyes often used. Looking back at old marketing photos women’s designer jeans only seemed to make the butt look nice and even that was hit and miss. The legs were average at best usually looking rather blah from the thighs downward and the waists were insanely high. Skinny jeans starting from about 10 years ago are vastly better looking and fitting than those from the 80s.

    • Lorna
      December 6, 2018 / 12:47 am

      I think it’s worse that these are men’s and not women’s lol.

  3. Tim
    December 6, 2018 / 7:23 pm


    When umpiring the latest jeans, it is so great that you call it like you see it. These are nothing more than ridiculously overpriced mom jeans for men without any redeemable features what so ever!

    • Lorna
      December 7, 2018 / 2:59 am

      Ha ha! Well one thing I will always be is honest!

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