No matter where you look – magazines, stores, denim blogs like Denimology – new names in denim are appearing all the time trying to gain some traction. One brand that stands out and demands attention is Norman Russell. As much for the brand’s family tree that stands as the inspiration for each fit as the “handmade in the USA” manufacturing behind each pair of jeans. With that said, time to review a pair of Norman Russell The Cookie jeans in Raw Navy.
While looking through Norman Russell’s website, I was immediately drawn to the Raw Navy option for The Cookie fit. Made from American Selvage Denim, the deep blue color with the contrasting white selvage seam was classic, fresh, clean and eye-catching. Looking more into the details, this was a pair of jeans that combined 60% denim with 40% recycled poly blend. This was the first time I came across a selvage/poly mix and I wanted to understand why someone would “mess around” with such a beautiful selvage fabric. After some discussions, it appears that the recycled poly fabric adds a few benefits to the jeans both in appearance and wearability. First, you can actually feel the difference the mix of fabric makes. The jeans don’t have a softer hand than any other jeans but they definitely feel different. I bit like there is a thin coating that you would find on a water resistant fabric. As for the appearance, the Norman Russell The Cookie jeans in Raw Navy have the slightest sheen integrated with the rich navy color. The feel and the look combine to make a pair of jeans that can easily pass for anything but denim. Sitting in the undiscovered limbo between denim, khaki and wool pants. I talk about versatility a lot, because I feel it is important when investing in a new pair of jeans, and The Cookie in Raw Navy is a shining example of how one pair of pants can be worn many different ways. I have worn The Cookie jeans on a number of different occassions and have received compliments each and every time……even when meeting with other brands.
Moving on to the fit, there are no surprises with Norman Russell The Cookie jeans. A standard slim fit jean with a nice mid-rise at around 10 ¼” complements the clean business-like look of the Raw Navy wash. Going with my standard size, 32 waist, I had the exact fit I was looking for and expecting. The waist is very comfortable requiring no break-in period and the fit on the legs is slim while still leaving a small bit of room to fit many different body types. There is no tapering in the legs and the 15.5” opening at the ankles is what you will find on most slim fit jeans. I would have preferred a slight taper at the ankle because I have fairly skinny ankles so I always think wider openings throw off my whole look a bit. However, the stark contrast between the white selvage stripe and the deep indigo blue of the fabric itself is really attractive with a turned up cuff. In addition to the appearance benefits the poly blend fabric provides, it also helps to retain the overall shape of the jeans for a longer period of time. So you don’t have to worry about any part of these jeans becoming unflattering as you continue to wear them day in and day out.
Bottom line: Norman Russell The Cookie jeans in Raw Navy are a great standard that many new brands can admire. If any guy out there is stuck in the straight leg fit world and want to move toward a more tailored fit, go with The Cookie fit and you will not be disappointed. Stay true to your normal size and feel comfortable from day one. All the details of quality make these jeans a go-to fashion staple; push through rivets, tonal stitching all over and of course the white selvage against that great navy wash. Check out where to get Norman Russell in your area or just pick up your own pair here.
Feel free to check out my past reviews here.
Until the next pair,