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The Perfect Pair

By Amalah

Dear Ms. Amalah,
Since having two beautiful babes in the last 3 years, lets just say I haven’t exactly deemed my wardrobe a priority. Now, while trying to lose the baby weight I’ve decided it’s time to get some good staples in my closet, starting with a pair of jeans. I have high standards or at least a longish list of criteria that must be met and I can’t seem to
do it by myself.
I’m curvy – typical hourglass (sz. 14-15) and what I want is a pair of jeans that:
– stays up even when I don’t wear a belt – no moons here.
– not low-rise or super low-rise or super (do some extra waxing) low-rise – I have a long torso.
– does not contain much stretch, most jeans with any stretch seem to be thin – I live in SD and it is damn cold so thin jeans are not practical.
– long enough, even after washing – I’m 5’10”
– not skinny – I don’t care how hip and trendy and rockin’ everyone else finds them – it’s straight leg, bootcut or bust for me.
– dark rinse without the faded butt, whiskering, frayed spots, etc.
– Are affordable, meaning I don’t have to pass them on to my grandchildren in order for me to get my $s worth.
Is this too much to ask? Please Amy help, get the Foxes on the prowl if need be. I would like to find my “perfect” jeans to wear into my 30s.
Thank-you and sincerely

Okay, I was totally out of ideas by the time I got to item number three on your list. I don’t know! At all! I can be of absolutely no help here! I suck!
So while I don’t like to COMPLETELY punt questions to the AlphaFoxyMamas, I had to make an exception for this one. Because every woman needs the perfect pair of jeans. EVERY WOMAN. So I hope you will understand that I have to take a backseat on this one. Instead, I dusted off the old Bat Signal, sent your query to some fabulous ladies and I think I’ve compiled some hella good options for you here:
(Yes. I compiled them. It was very hard work! I have to go lie down now.)
Let’s start off with CallistaWolf, who totally stole the ONE thing I planned to contribute to the conversation:
OMG, my dear Kelda, you sound almost exactly like myself. I will join you in bemoaning the lack of decent jeans for us long-torsoed, curvy women out there. While I know you say you don’t want any sort of low rise, I don’t think you want the full “mom-jean” effect either. You want something that’s going to make your rear look cute (the way a low rise jean can) without threatening to fall off and expose your underwear if you dare bend over OR that expose “muffin top” which NOBODY wants.
And that, unfortunately, can be a tall, tall order (forgive the pun).
You probably want a jean with at least a little stretch, since those are the most forgiving on our curvy figures. Just be sure to look for a jean with a heavier gauge denim. I’ve seen some out there, I know they exist! I’m with you on being cheap, since I’ve read many articles in “In Style” and seen segments on “Oprah” and “The Today Show” telling me which jeans I should be wearing. But those jeans cost beaucoup bucks, which I’m not willing to spend. HOWEVER, I’ve heard wonderful things about the Gap’s “Curvy Bootcut” jeans. I haven’t tried one
myself because I tend to put off personal purchases for far longer than is wise but the next time I dare to purchase some jeans, that’s right where I’m headed.
Melissa, over at the Buzz Off (look at me pimpin’ other AlphaMom sites!) (look at you stealin’ the very link I was gonna post! Bah! — Amalah) has a post where she talks about some of the best places to get good jeans at good prices (did you know Target has *inexpensive* custom jeans??) as well as some good websites that will help you decide what KIND of jean might be best for your body. Score!
Next up, Tonya offers up her thoughts:
Well, as a 5’5”, short torso woman, I’ll do my best to help! However, I live in ND so I feel her pain on the thin jeans. I have a pair of these jeans and I think they fit most of the requirements she’s looking for. They are not stretch, they come in tall sizes, and they fit relatively high on my backend. They are $39.50, but right now they are buy one, get one half off. And although these only come in “Medium Sandblast” and are an extra $10, I have found the Venezia Supreme line to be a more comfortable, trendy fit. These are also currently buy one, get one half off. Plus if you sign up on the Lane Bryant website, you get coupons in your email and in the mail often. Whatever you feel about shopping at Lane Bryant, I will say that the clothes are quality, withstand a lot of washing. I would definitely say I get my money’s worth out of every pair of pants (including jeans) I have bought from there.
Melanie seconds that recommendation:
Two words..Lane Bryant!! I have had 6 kids and I need something for my looong legs…(I am almost 6 feet tall..) They have the perfect Venezia Brand, Dark wash, light wash.. and they fit like a glove … You can order them online..being in Montana I am somewhat limited to my shops so everything is online for me!
And Alice thirds it, and throws another option into the mix:
Talbot’s. They’re a little bit pricey (~$60 if you don’t catch a sale), but they don’t believe in the pre-fading weirdness, and they cover your goods. I was surprised at how flattering the cut is (expecting the super-high-grandma-rise), and they’re *way* comfortable. Plus, they have a great return policy. Here’s the woman’s size (curvier cut on the 14s, $8 more). And here’s the misses size (less curvy 14s).
Lane Bryant has some jeans in size 14, and they’re often on sale because 14 is the little size at LB (and therefore often the one least often purchased.) Their rigid bootcut jean is one I like, although there’s a bit of whiskering (not a lot! just a wee bit!) and they’re not as high-rise as the Talbot’s jean. The ‘Las Vegas Wash‘ looks interesting, but since it has a bit of stretch, it might suck on the warmth front.
Plus, they have a coupon! (That one expires 2/19, but there’s always some kind of coupon available.)
Okay, now it’s Darcey’s turn:
Okay, I’m sure I won’t be the only person to suggest this, but is by far the best of the best website for finding the perfect pair of jeans. (Side note: They’re also diving into finding the best bra soon enough, too! I’m on the inside track and whatnot!)
But I completely feel her pain, except for the 3 kids part. I’m 5’11” and curvy, and need some jeans that have some support (i.e., don’t sag out after one washing). Unfortunately, I’ll be completely honest in that I haven’t found the “perfect jean” that is considered a normal person’s “affordable.”
I own all kinds of jeans. From Old Navy to Lucky to Banana Republic to Gap to American Eagle to Paige. Which ones get the best treatment from me? My Paige jeans. Which ones have been the only pair that my boyfriend commented on about me having a hot [butt]? My Paige jeans.
There’s already a beautiful pair of Laurel Canyon in Dark Clean ones in my closet. I adore them and wear them *constantly,* meaning that I’m getting my $$ worth out of them. I’m about to buy the Hollywood Hills and Robertsons as soon as my size is back in stock. (Both of these are a slightly higher rise than the Laurel Canyon ones, which might be too low for your tastes.)
So yeah, not cheap, but I swear by these jeans. They have stretch without feeling too thin (especially the Dark Clean wash – you can feel that they’ve got a bit of “heft” to them without feeling like you’re wearing starched pants), good support around the butt, hips and waist area, and oh, so stylish.
Kozbi is also willing to pay a little more for the perfect pair:

As a ridiculously tall woman who is also plus-size, I’m just happy to find some that fit. I had a great idea until I got to her last demand. Apple Bottoms are made for women with a little more junk in the trunk, so they tend to stay up better. They’re also thicker and made longer. And they go well past what size she needs. They have boot cut and all different washes–mostly on the darker side. BUT they aren’t affordable by my standards. Maybe eBay?
One more tip… Has she checked Torrid? Likely they don’t have a brick-and-mortar store in SD, but they’re online. Could find some good options there.
And finally, our last AlphaFoxyMama, who swear to God, told me to sign her as “Chunky Photojournalist Barbie” and my God, I love her for that, has one last promising suggestion:
Actually, I DO have the perfect pair of jeans for her!
Lately, I’ve been buying everything I can from Forth and Towne, including my new favorite jeans. Forth and Towne is a new venture brought to us all by Gap, Inc., the parent company for the Gap, Gap Baby/Kids/Body and Old Navy, etc. This is is their decidedly high-end line for (quoting from the website) “women who have grown up, grown into themselves and want to look as fabulous as they feel.”
Their clothes run the gamut from the familiar Gap basics (also offered in larger sizes) to professional, ready-to-wear suits, skirts and dresses. I’m a curvy hourglass size 16, XL, DD-cup girl. My credit card
and I can’t seem to stay out of there, especially since I discovered my perfect pair of jeans. I’m a professional photographer; I wear one of my many pairs of Forth and Towne jeans for work a few days a week.
They come in a variety of very dark indigo colors, and there is absolutely no fraying or “pre-breaking in” to be seen. They cost $58. I have both the curvy and bootcut styles. I personally wear the “regular” waist fit, and I never wear belts. They sit right at the waist- not cut so high that they’re “mom jeans” (as seen on Saturday Night Live), but there is absolutely no creeping downwards either, even when I’m crouching courtside at a basketball game, which is my personal test. They do come in low-rise as well.
The curvy style does have a bit of stretch to them. In fact, the tag says “curvy stretch” on it. (I just took my pants off for you.) I know what you mean about stretch jeans usually being thinner than regular denim, but I think you’ll be fine. On Saturday, I spent four hours sitting by a frozen lake- while wearing my curvy stretch jeans- waiting
for a bald eagle to take flight so I could take a picture of it. I was cold, but I wasn’t wishing for long johns or anything.
The only drawback is that Forth and Towne has just ten stores, and none of them are in South Dakota. Still, there’s the website.
So there you have it, lots of ideas for the slightly-bigger-yet-still-totally-fabulous ladies out there. Feel free to include your own love-it-or-hate-it testimonial in the comments, since clearly you guys are in charge today. I’m going to go take a nap. You know, after all this back-breaking compiling I’ve done.


(No, this photo will never get old. I may start including it every week, just because I love it that much.)

About the Author

Amy Corbett Storch


Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy’s daily mothering adventures at Ama...

Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy’s daily mothering adventures at Amalah. Also, it’s pronounced AIM-ah-lah.

If there is a question you would like answered on the Advice Smackdown, please submit it to

Amy also documented her second pregnancy (with Ezra) in our wildly popular Weekly Pregnancy Calendar, Zero to Forty.

Amy is mother to rising first-grader Noah, preschooler Ezra, and toddler Ike.

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