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Denim Insider: A Levi’s Stylist Breaks All The Rules


janine chilton bio - Levis

Janine Chilton-Faust, VP of women??™s design for the Levi's® brand.

In all my sputtering about on the current “It” jeans, I recently had the opportunity to revisit an American original in the denim industry; and, what’s more, had the privilege to interview a top Stylist from Levi’s®.  What really blew me away, was, the good PR folks actually got me the top Stylist, Janine Chilton-Faust, VP of women’s design for the Levi’s® brand.  I wanted to pick her brain on what were good jeans for women of various sizes and shapes to wear, and what were some good tips on what to wear for various occasions.  As you know, jeans are taking over!

Now, I expected some denim-snobby answers, but not Ms. Chilton-Faust.  A San Francisco Bay Area resident, she exudes practicality, confidence and a bit of rebellion.   She says we can wear white jeans after Labor Day, and it’s okay to wear jeans to a wedding, as long as you style it right.  It shouldn’t be too hard to look great, especially with an assortment of Levi’s au courant jeans to steal the social scene.  To be honest, I had no idea how completely reinvented and how far Levi’s has come since I wore my first 501′s back in college.

In your opinion, what makes a terrific-fitting pair of jeans? Are bootcuts really for everybody?
The first test is how you feel!  You can own a fit and make it yours if you feel good.  If you rely on what others think, then make sure the jean fits your body type, doesn’t sag in the rear, gap at the waist and most importantly, the pockets are placed in the best position to optimize the rear view.

It??™s true that bootcuts can be worn by anyone and all body types… but it is the wearer??™s choice in what makes her feel good.

Tip: “If you want a leaner leg look, make sure the thigh to the knee is a slim fit!”

Levi's Legging front

A Levi's legging jean.

It seems the legging jeans (aka Jeggings) are the current “It” jeans to wear.  How do you suggest we ladies wear them for the winter season?
Boots or ballet flats look great with jeggings.  On top, proportion works well with the legging ??“ so anything long, wide or layered all complement the total look.

For those who may feel the Jeggings are too close for comfort, what are good alternatives?
Skinny jeans are the perfect alternative.  Levi’s® 531 Skinny or Levi’s® Juniors 524 Skinny are jeans that still provide a long lean skinny look without being too tight.

What is the “It” jean for men this winter? How should men wear them?
Levi’s® 501 jean!  And each man can make them his own.  It is a universal fit that can be worn crisp and clean for a smart look with a cuff, or washed and damaged for a casual look.

Is it appropriate for men and women over 35 to wear slashed/ripped jeans?
Absolutely!  Just make sure you pair it with a little more sophisticated top and footwear.

How would you cure the “muffin-top” syndrome?
Don’t be afraid to try on different sizes.  Sometimes you may need to size up one size. Otherwise, choose your tops wisely so they don’t hug your muffin.

What technique/tip do you have to make sure our straight leg/skinny jeans stay inside our tall boots?
Pull your sock up over the jeans.  If it is a straight leg with a little more room at the bottom you can fold over at the bottom to hug the leg, then pull your socks over.

A Levi's Boyfriend jean.

A Levi's Boyfriend jean.

What is a denim fashion faux pas?  We at Denim Therapy aren’t terribly crazy about the Canadian Tuxedo and matchy-match jacket and jeans.  Do you care to dispel some fashion myths?
The beauty of denim is it can really work anywhere and anytime.  It??™s about how you wear it that makes it appropriate or not.  I don’t like rules – and if there are rules, then we should break them.

SHOP LEVI’S

Kathy Ng Hassan









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Posted Dec 17 2009 in Uncategorized

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