La Ligne's next expansion was always hiding in plain sight. For years in the brand's online store, an editor-favorite destination for perfectly calibrated striped knitwear, models were styled in anonymous denim under La Ligne's signature crewnecks and polo sweaters. Inquiring mind would see that eternally cool formula—striped sweater plus denim—and couldn't help but wonder: Where can we buy the jeans, too? The answer used to be a number of outside brands; now, the answer is also La Ligne.
La Ligne entered the denim game last month with three jean styles named for the brand's founders: the Valerie, a skinny jean, the Molly, a straight-leg jean, and the Meredith, a kick flare jean. All three pairs come in sizes 23–34.
Finding La Ligne's niche in the vast world of denim boils down to two main points, co-founder Valerie Macaulay tells BAZAAR.com: "We brought the same brand ethos of making something high quality and comfortable while keeping price in mind." Each pair retails for $198, in line with premium denim brands like Mother and Re/Done. And while they come in an organic cotton that denim snobs will appreciate, these jeans don't look or feel pretentious. Like La Ligne's other collections, Macaulay says, the denim is meant to be seasonless and make getting dressed fun—whether it's styled under several advanced layers or one of the brand's essential striped sweaters.
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To see just how versatile the new jeans could be, three BAZAAR editors with different body types and personal styles each tested a pair of La Ligne's new denim. Read on for our honest thoughts on whether La Ligne jeans are truly worth shopping.
Jaclyn Alexandra Cohen, senior fashion & accessories editor
Silhouette: "I tested the Meredith jean from La Ligne, which encompasses everything I love about denim. They're comfortable and make everything instantly cooler. This style is a perfect black jean with a twist: It's high-waisted and fitted in all of the right places and has a slight flare at the bottom with a cropped hem. Because of the proportions, it totally works. Not to mention, they nailed the shade of black (yes, there are shades of black!) which is so dark, these look somewhat tailored at first glance."
Sizing: "I'm usually a 26 or 27 in denim, but also I consider length. I'm tall, so sometimes I have to go up sometimes for a longer inseam. Here, I went with a 27, which didn't compromise fit elsewhere because they had a 30” inseam. They fit like a glove!"
Styling: "These pair nicely with almost anything: a prairie top tucked in, a baby T-shirt that meets the waistline, or an oversized button-down to juxtapose the fitted bottom. I love these with Chelsea boots in the fall or winter, yet the flare is slight enough that they would fit inside of my slouchy higher boots. I also am excited about wearing these with strappy, lace-up sandals this summer, since they're like denim cigarette pants. You really can't go wrong, and these will definitely be a staple in my wardrobe!"
Halie LeSavage, fashion commerce editor
Silhouette: "Sharing everything I bought last month in a BAZAAR shopping newsletter showed me that I maybe wear too much black. I tried the Molly jean in a dark blue wash with some extra encouragement from Jaclyn. This is a true straight-leg jean with a high-rise that hits at my natural waist. When I figured out the size that works best for my body type—more on that in a minute—I loved how utterly timeless these jeans looked with their understated wash and streamlined fit."
Sizing: "My denim size depends on the brand, but it's usually in the 30 to 31 range. Every jean fits ever-so-slightly different, and I ended up liking the feel of a 32 in this denim's rigid, organic cotton. Also, with my curvier legs, the size 31 looked more like a skinny jean with a strangely loose ankle on me.
"Sizing up in the legs did create a waist gap that I didn't have in the smaller size—but this is a quirk I'm used to with a small waist and thicker legs. Adding a leather belt by Emme Parsons closed the gap and added a little polish I would have wanted anyway. Fit-wise, I can say this is the closest to a vintage straight-leg jean I've been able to track down in my size—and the pair got more comfortable each time I wore it. (Current tally: five times.)"
Styling: "I'm very much a uniform dresser, denim included. Right now, I'm loving these jeans with a tucked-in T-shirt, a relaxed blazer, and either a loafer or a lug-sole boot. I wear jeans all through the summer, so these will stay in rotation with just a T-shirt and sandals like The Row's Ginza when things start to warm up."
Tara Gonzalez, senior fashion editor
Silhouette: "When it comes to denim, I mostly prefer vintage styles because I love a jean that looks like it has been worn in. To me, denim is the kind of fashion that feels like it carries a story with it, and every single pair I’ve ever owned has only gotten better with age. I loved the Molly Jean from La Ligne in the lighter wash because it still has that retro feel even though it is brand new."
Sizing: "I ended up ordering a 29, a size up then normal because it still like my jean to have a little give."
Styling: "Recently, I’ve been gravitating towards looser, low-rise styles but this one is a pure Mom jean, and it made me realize what’s so great about high-rise, straight-leg style: it’s a classic that always looks great and has a slight ‘70s vibe with more polish."
Halie LeSavage is the fashion commerce editor at Harper's BAZAAR. Her style reporting covers everything from reviewing the best designer products to profiling emerging brands and designers. Previously, she was the founding retail writer at Morning Brew and a fashion associate at Glamour.