Denim, the sturdy blue cotton fabric the world knows and loves. Denim is a thick cotton warp-faced textile in which the weft passes under two or more warp threads. This twill weaving produces a diagonal ribbing that distinguishes it from cotton duck.
The most common denim is indigo denim, in which the warp thread is dyed, while the weft thread is left white. As a result of the warp-faced twill weaving, one side of the textile is dominated by the blue warp threads and the other side is dominated by the white weft threads. This is what causes blue jeans to be white on the inside.
It’s the indigo dyeing process, in which the core of the warp threads remains white, that creates denim’s signature fading characteristics. Fashion fading at its finest!
Denim dresses look and feel sent from heaven. A denim dress can be glammed up or toned down merely by the accessories you wear with the dress. A glamorous night out? Try five inch black patent leather stilettos, a black velvet choker, dangle bracelets and long diamond earrings. Your denim dress has become high fashion. Walking an evening fair? A flat shoe or sandal and minimal jewelry keeps your denim dress casual and comfortable.
Denim Fun Fact: The name “denim” derives from the French serge de Nimes, meaning “serge from Nimes.” Denim was traditionally colored blue with indigo dye to make blue jeans. The contemporary use of the word ‘jeans’ comes from the French word for Geneo, Italy (Genes), where the first denim trousers were made.
Denim has graduated from trousers to dresses and looks splendid when worn with long, short, curly or straight tresses.
Dress Fun Fact: A dress is a garment consisting of a skirt with an attached bodice (or a matching bodice giving the effect of a one piece garment). A dress consists of a top piece that covers the torso and hangs down over the legs, containing a skirt of any desired length. All dresses, denim included, can be formal or informal.
Denim Fun Fact: Dry, or raw denim, (contrasted with washed denim) is denim that isn’t washed after having been dyed during production. Over time dry denim will fade, which is considered fashionable in some circumstances. During the process of wear, fading usually occurs on the parts of the garment that receive the most stress. On a pair of denim jeans, this includes the upper thighs, the ankles, and the areas behind the knees.
The dose for fashion happiness? Enter the durable, dazzling, dynamite denim dress!
Not sure what to wear to the Sunday brunch? Don’t stress! Always a hit is the denim dress!
After being made into an article of clothing, most denim garments are washed to make them softer and to reduce or eliminate shrinkage. Washed denim is sometimes artificially distressed to produce a worn look. Much of the appeal of artificially distressed denim is that it resembles dry denim which has faded. In jeans made from dry denim, such fading is affected by the body of the person who wears them and by the activities of their daily life. This process creates what denim enthusiasts feel to be a more natural look than artificially distressed denim.
Denim Fun Fact: To facilitate the natural distressing process, some wearers of dry denim will abstain from washing their denim garments for more than six months. Most dry denim is made from 100% cotton and comes from several different countries, including the United States, Zimbabwe and Japan.
Denim Fun Fact: Denim was originally dyed with a dye produced from the plant ‘Indigofera tinctoria’, but most denim today is dyed with synthetic indigo dye. In both cases, the yarn undergoes a repeated sequence of dipping and oxidation – the more dips, the stronger the color of the indigo.
Rope dyeing is considered the best yarn dyeing method, as it eliminates shading across the fabric width. The alternative “slasher process” is cheaper because only one beaming process is needed. In rope dyeing, beaming is done twice.
Two Categories of Denim Dyeing:
- Indigo Dyeing: Produces the traditional blue color or similar shades.
- Sulfur Dyeing: Produces specialty black colors and other colors, such as red, pink, purple, gray, rust, mustard and green (Think colored skinny jeans!)
The ever popular stretch denim incorporates a plastic component, such as spandex. This creates a certain amount of give in garments made from stretch denim. Only about 3% of spandex is required within the fabric to create a significant stretching capacity of about 15%.
Whether your denim dress flows to your ankles or fits short and tight like a miniskirt, when dressed in a denim dress you’ll be a fashion diva with a silent flirt!
“I normally wear denim jeans but tonight I’m going with a denim dress.”
“I love the faded denim look and the natural wear of the fabric distress.”
“Since I’m going out to dinner I wore my patent leather pumps and a flower in my hair.”
“Those two accessories do glam up the outfit and give you a stylish high fashion flair.”
“Perhaps you’d like to join us. There will be plenty of room for you.”
“Excellent. Let me change into my denim dress and we’ll match the whole night through.”
Denim Dresses: When only divine denim duds will do!
Nancy’s next book in her award winning murder mystery series, Deadly Decisions – A Natalie North Novel, available now in online and retail bookstores.
Nancy Mangano is an American fashion journalist, screenwriter and author of the Natalie North murder mystery book series, A Passion for Prying, Murder Can Be Messy and Deadly Decisions – A Natalie North Novel. Visit Nancy on her author website http://www.nancymangano.com, Twitter @https://twitter.com/nancymangano, her fashion magazine Strutting in Style! at http://www.struttinginstyle.com, and her Facebook fan page Nancy Mangano https://www.facebook.com/pages/Nancy-Mangano/362187023895846