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#1
Old 09-21-2015, 09:49 PM
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Levis jeans: why no 31" in-seam??

Why do the big jeans makers not offer a 31" in-seam? I know in my case I have passed up many purchasing opportunities because I know that a 30" in seam is almost always too short, and a 32" is almost always too long.
Was the efficiency and lower cost (by eliminating odd in-seam sizes) worth the reduced sale of the 31" in-seam, which, being "average," would seem to have applied to many, many people.
#2
Old 09-21-2015, 10:09 PM
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A 31" in-seamer is an odd-man out in the world of Levis. You're supposed to pick your poison, purchase the 30" and live with the high waters or get the 32" grunge look. They do the same thing with underwear sizes etc., so the 'tweens just have to live with it.
#3
Old 09-21-2015, 11:03 PM
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What makes 31" "average"?

And why doesn't that apply to the missing 33" and 35" lengths? Or lengths shorter than 29"?

The obvious answer seems to me that reducing the number of different sizes is the best policy for all mass-market clothing sizes, and that most odd sizes were eliminated because that worked the best across the industry.

What would be interesting to know is who did this first? And what were sizes like when they were first introduced?

Last edited by Exapno Mapcase; 09-21-2015 at 11:04 PM.
#4
Old 09-22-2015, 12:21 AM
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It would make more business sense to eliminate the less popular sizes, not the odd sizes. Serve all the people in the middle of the bell curve, at the expense of those on the tails.
#5
Old 09-22-2015, 05:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graymalkin View Post
Why do the big jeans makers not offer a 31" in-seam?
Wrangler makes jeans with odd size inseams. I'm wearing a pair right now.
#6
Old 09-22-2015, 05:45 AM
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Turn-ups, people. You turn up the cuffs of your jeans.

How is this new information to some people?
#7
Old 09-22-2015, 05:52 AM
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Look, Levis even has a page on their site covering this amazingly advanced jeans-wearing technique.
#8
Old 09-22-2015, 06:17 AM
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Just FYI: Lands End lets you order jeans in any length you want, down to the quarter inch. They custom-cut them for you when you order.

I wore Levis most of my life, but have given up on them. Lands End seems to be good.
#9
Old 09-22-2015, 08:37 AM
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I'd be happy with the 31" length. Companies could make them, while saving money by not making zillions of jeans that are 36" long with a 28" waist, which pile up on the racks because there just aren't that many tall cadaverous people around any more.
#10
Old 09-22-2015, 08:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shakester View Post
Look, Levis even has a page on their site covering this amazingly advanced jeans-wearing technique.
I remember shrink-to-fit jeans and having to buy them too big to get them to fit right after washing. There was always that pair you didn't buy right, that was always a bit too big or too small. And as they shrunk (or I grew) the cuffs got smaller, revealing a lighter color line across the leg where it used to be cuffed. And only button-fly Levis, zippers were for squares.
#11
Old 09-22-2015, 09:41 AM
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2 inches is a big difference between sizes, and it would seeem to leave out a small %age of people around the 31 mark (same for 33, etc), but that number is maybe small enough that many will accept the large/smaller size, and those who just have to have the 31 will get it altered. The few who refuse both options are just not worth the 31 sizing.
#12
Old 09-22-2015, 10:05 AM
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I've been wearing Levi's for about 40 years now, and I've noticed that their sizing is, at best, approximate. My inseam is 34", but I've got to try the jeans on in the store, because the manufacturer apparently thinks 34" means 34 inches, plus or minus an inch or two. The same with waist sizing.

So try on some 32-inch jeans, or some 30-inch jeans. You'll find a perfect 31", for sure.
#13
Old 09-22-2015, 10:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenElf View Post
A 31" in-seamer is an odd-man out in the world of Levis. You're supposed to pick your poison, purchase the 30" and live with the high waters or get the 32" grunge look. They do the same thing with underwear sizes etc., so the 'tweens just have to live with it.
Yeah, so I go for the 32. A holdover from having been young when it was stylish to walk around treading on the cuffs of your super-flared bell-bottoms. I still make a slight nod to the bell bottoms by buying Levis 517 boot cut. Although somewhere along the line I've started wearing cargo pants more often than jeans anyway. Those don't seem to come in a fine enough granularity of inseams either.
#14
Old 09-22-2015, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Jackmannii View Post
I'd be happy with the 31" length. Companies could make them, while saving money by not making zillions of jeans that are 36" long with a 28" waist, which pile up on the racks because there just aren't that many tall cadaverous people around any more.
Back when I spent a stint in retail, there were far fewer specialized women's jeans and so women, or girls of high school age, came in to buy men's jeans. I was astounded at how many of them bought 36" inseam, despite not being especially tall. Women do tend to have longer legs and shorter torsos than men in my experience, which I suppose explains all those leggy pictures.

Do women do this today? Not the ones who wear skinny jeans, certainly, but maybe there is still some demand for men's jeans from women. Or maybe it's just an anachronism and will someday disappear.
#15
Old 09-22-2015, 10:42 AM
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I have the same question about waist sizes. Most men's pants--jeans, casual, dress--are sized in even inches starting at 34". Before I lost some weight) I was buying from Eddie Bauer, the only ones who had 35" waist jeans (that I know of).

And I won't even start talking about dress shirt sleeve lengths.
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#16
Old 09-22-2015, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by CookingWithGas View Post
I have the same question about waist sizes. Most men's pants--jeans, casual, dress--are sized in even inches starting at 34". Before I lost some weight) I was buying from Eddie Bauer, the only ones who had 35" waist jeans (that I know of).

And I won't even start talking about dress shirt sleeve lengths.
Lands End has 31-37 in odd sizes.
#17
Old 09-22-2015, 11:27 AM
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These things aren't precision made like rocket parts. I would be surprised if the tolerance was less than 2". I assume they're labeled like 10% resistors. 1kΩ can be between 900Ω and 1.1kΩ, and 1.2kΩ can be between 1.08kΩ and 1.32kΩ, so there's no reason to sell a 1.1kΩ resistor.

So that's why you try on pants before you buy them. Find the "short" 32" pants on the shelf or the "long" 30" pants and you'll have your 31". They just aren't labeled that way.

EDIT: Or, what Saintly Loser said.

Last edited by DrCube; 09-22-2015 at 11:28 AM.
#18
Old 09-22-2015, 11:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alley Dweller View Post
Just FYI: Lands End lets you order jeans in any length you want, down to the quarter inch. They custom-cut them for you when you order.
Thanks.
#19
Old 09-22-2015, 11:50 AM
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Penney's will also order the size you want. Try finding a 29" inseam with, say, a 44" waist. Manufacturers always seem to assume that if you have a larger waist, you must be seven feet tall. They also assume that all women want to buy "slimming" jeans. My wife has a hell of a time finding comfy pants.
#20
Old 09-22-2015, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by WF Tomba View Post
It would make more business sense to eliminate the less popular sizes, not the odd sizes. Serve all the people in the middle of the bell curve, at the expense of those on the tails.
Nonsense. A person who wants 31s (which includes me) will settle for a 32 & hem it. We'll grumble, but we'll buy. A person who needs 38s won't settle for a 35 if that's the longest (or widest) size they make.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kanicbird View Post
2 inches is a big difference between sizes, and it would seeem to leave out a small %age of people around the 31 mark (same for 33, etc), but that number is maybe small enough that many will accept the large/smaller size, and those who just have to have the 31 will get it altered. The few who refuse both options are just not worth the 31 sizing.
This.
#21
Old 09-22-2015, 05:15 PM
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Coincidental to this thread, I scored a pair of 40/29 jeans at Penney's today. Give their "Arizona" brand a look, if you need odd-sized lengths.
#22
Old 09-22-2015, 08:07 PM
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Thanks for the replies.
#23
Old 09-22-2015, 08:09 PM
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33" waist is a hard one too.
#24
Old 09-22-2015, 08:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shakester View Post
Turn-ups, people. You turn up the cuffs of your jeans.

How is this new information to some people?
It's not a length thing, as I keep having to remind my wife (who in exchange for being upbraided continues to shop for me, God love her).

It's the _inseam_, right? Meaning that the length from waist to crotch on larger sizes leaves too much room that a) it looks bad or b) allows my precious bodily parts to get more clammy from the humidity than otherwise. The waist size and the cuffs are more easily dealt with.
#25
Old 09-22-2015, 10:04 PM
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In my experience, the odd number sizes are out there, but most stores don't carry them. If you can find a store that carries pants and nothing else, they are far more likely to have what you want.

Back when I was thinner, I had a very hard time finding pants that fit at all. I could find my waist size for someone with much longer legs, or my inseam for someone very fat, but couldn't ever find a match for both. One day a clerk suggested I try a store that carried "student sizes".
Lo and behold the major manufactures actually do make 28-29 (that is a 28 inch waist and 29 inch inseam), it's just that department stores don't carry them.

That was my size from my late teens until my mid 30s. It is far easier to find a 34-29, although I often have to compromise at 34-30.
#26
Old 09-22-2015, 11:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leo Bloom View Post
It's not a length thing, as I keep having to remind my wife (who in exchange for being upbraided continues to shop for me, God love her).

It's the _inseam_, right? Meaning that the length from waist to crotch on larger sizes leaves too much room that a) it looks bad or b) allows my precious bodily parts to get more clammy from the humidity than otherwise. The waist size and the cuffs are more easily dealt with.
The length from waist to crotch is called the rise. The inseam is the length from crotch to cuffs.
#27
Old 09-23-2015, 12:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Shakester View Post
The length from waist to crotch is called the rise. The inseam is the length from crotch to cuffs.
Huh. Thanks.

So what's with all these long rises that make my chonson sweaty?

And to think my father-in-law, may he rest in peace, was a master cutter.

Last edited by Leo Bloom; 09-23-2015 at 12:49 AM.
#28
Old 09-23-2015, 01:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Leo Bloom View Post
Huh. Thanks.

So what's with all these long rises that make my chonson sweaty?

And to think my father-in-law, may he rest in peace, was a master cutter.
If you think the rise in modern jeans is too high, I don't know what I can tell you. Finding trousers with a waistband anywhere near the actual waist and not halfway down the hips is a win for me.
#29
Old 09-23-2015, 07:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Leo Bloom View Post
Huh. Thanks.

So what's with all these long rises that make my chonson sweaty?

And to think my father-in-law, may he rest in peace, was a master cutter.
In light of grude's recent thread about penis slicing and your Jewish heritage I sorta snorted when I misunderstood the meaning of "master cutter" in the context of sweaty chonsons.
#30
Old 09-23-2015, 07:34 AM
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Originally Posted by SpyOne View Post
... Back when I was thinner, I had a very hard time finding pants that fit at all. I could find my waist size for someone with much longer legs, or my inseam for someone very fat, but couldn't ever find a match for both. One day a clerk suggested I try a store that carried "student sizes".
Lo and behold the major manufactures actually do make 28-29 (that is a 28 inch waist and 29 inch inseam), it's just that department stores don't carry them.
...
That was (and mostly still is) me. It was (and mostly still is) a PITA to be in my 30s to now 50s and still dressing like a teen because that's what fits.

Yes I can get suits and other fogey clothes custom made in my size.
#31
Old 09-23-2015, 07:48 AM
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What has always confused me is that I have to buy shrink to fit in order to get the right size. If I make the recommended allowance of 1" in the waist and 2" in the length it just doesn't work. Been like this forever.
#32
Old 09-23-2015, 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Frank View Post
Wrangler makes jeans with odd size inseams. I'm wearing a pair right now.
Huh. I thought there was something odd about your inseam but I just figured you were excited to be posting here.
#33
Old 09-23-2015, 12:20 PM
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Checking Amazon, there doesn't seem to be any odd length inseams, with the exception of 29" (for both Levis and Wranglers). Why just the concern over 31s?
#34
Old 09-23-2015, 04:26 PM
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Jeans manufacturers could make them in odd inseam lengths. In fact they still do, in some lines.

But most stores don't stock them. It nearly doubles the amount of shelf space and investment in inventory for every line of jeans the store sells; and it doesn't add to sales much. Most customers are willing to accept a size to the nearest 2 inches, so they buy what's there.

I know my parents store only stocked even inseams, and even had limited stock in certain waist sizes. As a small store, we just couldn't afford to stock the full range of sizes.

The same thing has happened with shirts. Now, most shirts are sold in only 3-4 sizes (S, M, L, & XL) -- only dress shirts still come in the full range of neck sizes & sleeve lengths.
#35
Old 09-24-2015, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Chefguy View Post
Penney's will also order the size you want. Try finding a 29" inseam with, say, a 44" waist. Manufacturers always seem to assume that if you have a larger waist, you must be seven feet tall.
That hasn't been my experience. Anything 38 inches above in the waist usually stop at a 29" inseam. Every now and then, you can find a 32. YMapparentlyV.

Last edited by handsomeharry; 09-24-2015 at 07:21 AM.
#36
Old 09-27-2015, 04:14 PM
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My mom worked for Levis back when she was fresh out of school. She said there was always a 1 inch tolerance either direction. She only rejected those that fell outside that range.

I had assumed they'd gotten more precise over time, but maybe not.
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