Designer Q & A - Levi's  CarlChiara.jpg

This week’s Designer Q & A is with Carl Chiara, Premium Head of Design at the daddy of all denim brands – Levi’s.

1) Why do you think after 200 years jeans are still one of the most popular items of clothing?

Jeans are timeless. We have the many of the oldest jeans in our archives in San Francisco and they are as relevant and as perfect today in an emotional & style sense as they were 150 years ago for Pioneers in a rational & functional sense. A pair of jeans is not a static proposition – jeans have soul and in that there is a very meaningful relationship and personal experience that comes with each pair that can last a lifetime.

2) Last time I counted there were over 200 brands of premium denim jeans, what makes your jeans stand out from the rest?

There is an ease to Levi’s jeans. The designs are considered but never overproduced. As higher quality and longer lasting products become more important what makes our jeans stand out is the craftsmanship as well as style and fit that can make sense as much today as it will 6 months or 6 years from now.

3) Who do you imagine is a typical customer?

I don’t know that we have a typical consumer. We sell jeans in malls in the middle of America just as well as we do at Barneys New York in Chelsea. Our jeans are cutting edge and middle of the road at the same time.


  1. I don’t know how to tell you this, but Lohan and Barrymore in Levi’s is bullshit and detracts from the brand. They’re mediocre actresses and paparazzi fruit. Get someone who’s really cool and relevant next time.

  2. Nice interview.

    Apart of all the other brands that pollute the market, Levis is the one, the original and the authentic. Vintage or new… it’s the story. Indeed.

  3. I have been wearing Levi’s since I was a kid. They are the only jeans the fit my body precisely, I can buy they a size too big and they still sit on my body great. I have many jeans, many “premium” jeans that I’ve spent too much for. In the end I always come back to my Levi’s (and they are so much cheaper but better quality!)

    My favorite pairs are red 501’s I bought after college, and an old pair of used purple 501’s, they were way to big when I bought them but look fabulous on just the same. Keep up the good work!!

  4. You are right!!! 501’s are essential in my life. Love, Love.
    I have also come to love the look of some of the type 1 and slouch styles….just do not like the “stretchiness” of them. Please go back to and stick with “Rigid” Denim.
    Way more flattering and classic.

  5. I SO agree, I hate stretch jeans they don’t hold their shape. isn’t that what denim is all about? It always holds it’s shape? Please go back to 100% denim!!

  6. I am fan of raw, rigid and unwashed denim.
    Most of my denim was purchased unwashed and follow the classic statement of the six months…

    But at some point, as designer, I think we can’t ignore the real needs of the world wide market… the comfort of the lycra and the new yarn can’t be avoid if you want some modern touch, even on classic and authentic design.
    I mean this for girls of course.

    BTW tha original rigid denim is the king.

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