Consumers have adapted to athleisure and knitwear as the go-to attire for post-pandemic life. As folks return to the office, what to wear to work quickly becomes a high-ranking workplace benefit. Consider that at least one-third of workers have shared that they would take a 10% pay cut over having to get dressed for work every day. And although that might have been difficult to conceive pre-pandemic, where fashion-forward trends were the norm, nearly half the planet is wearing jeans at any given moment. With the mass population preferring comfort to couture, denim makers have an unprecedented opportunity to integrate themselves as a business casual staple.
Jeans were first introduced in 1871 by Jacob Davis and Levi Strauss & Co. as a durable material suitable for the labor workforce. A hundred and fifty years later, the denim jeans market in the U.S. reported an estimated $66.4 million in revenue last year. Analysts predict the global denim jeans valuation to reach nearly $87.4 billion by 2027, further proving that jeans are here to stay no matter how you wear them. Blue jeans are probably the most fundamentally functional clothing in America’s closets, a must-have pant, thanks to their versatility and longevity. Finding the perfect fit is practically a rite of passage. Look for Levi’s new small store formats to open in your neighborhood.
The O.G. Jean Makers
Levi’s is the most sought-after brand by shoppers. The jean manufacturer beat Wall Street estimates with a 21.8% increase in sales for the first quarter of 2022. Levi’s has partnered with Target to distribute its Red Tab denim line to expand its reach to women. They’ve also added home and pet products in a limited lifestyle collection. As consumer demand pivots toward loose-fitting, high-rise jeans, their famous 501s have become a new favorite by Gen-Z. The spendthrift younger shopper embraces the looser fit made famous by 1990 icons Cindy Crawford and Britney Spears for its universally flattering style. In addition, the popularity of bootcut and other wider cut jeans prompted the veteran jean maker to launch a buyback program, Levi’s Secondhand, to capitalize on the resale market.
Another cult favorite, Calvin Klein, is also leaning toward a wider fit silhouette. The fashion brand has reprioritized its apparel and accessories lines to focus on what it deems as hero products, underwear, and denim. The iconic brand recently partnered with streetwear label Palace on its first unisex denim collection. This nod supports the continued acceptance of gender-fluid fashion.
It’s Casual, Business Casual
Dressing for work will continue to favor casualization as people adapt to the hybrid home-to-office lifestyle. We’re sure to witness a continued evolution of workplace fashion trends as many businesses and organizations relax their dress codes.