You are in a clothing store where premium denim jeans are sold and you see someone looking at the denim wall. You just happen to be looking at them when they look at the price tag and you see their eyes light up and then they take a step back and shake their head in disbelief. The jeans that they were looking at were nearly 5 times as much as the ones that they had on. Many of us have probably witnessed this very same scenario if not committed this same act ourselves.
With jean prices varying as much as they do these days, there is much confusion to as why. Although they may not justify some of these higher jean prices to some of you, we are going to discuss some of the factors that contribute to these varying prices.
Just like any other product that is being sold, the marketing positioning is hands down one of the largest influences of premium denim jean prices. Raw denim made in the United States has to be priced fairly high due to the cost of materials, construction and labor. With some designer jeans, notice I say some because there are a handful of designer jeans that are made in the United States, they can be made overseas for a fraction of the cost but the fact that celebrities around the globe are wearing them allows them to be priced exactly the same if not higher.
On a similar note, massed produced jeans, which are manufactured on newer modern equipment praised for their speed and acceptable tolerance rates, are going to cost less than jeans made with older looms. You are probably asking yourself why anyone would still be using older machinery. Believe it or not the Japanese love their denim so they have handfuls of restored machinery as well as the United States where most of them were built. The older equipment may not be fast but it creates a much better garment. Although this often doesn’t even phase the typical jean artisan, but this is one of the reasons why Japanese and American made denim is more expensive.
Another relating factor of the previously mentioned topics is labor costs. Again, Japan and American denim, along with a few others, will be more expensive than your higher volume denim coming from China. Simple economics associated with price of labor in different countries will explain this.
Yes there are a handful of other factors that contribute to the high prices of premium denim jeans like yarn used for stitching, unique pocket stitching and other logo and insignias, different washes and the list goes on. What a perfect topic for another post!