We’re not sure if his jeans and mood are related, but then again, who doesn’t like new jeans?
Kanye West looks really happy these days, doesn’t he? Every photo of the rapper/producer/designer/etc… for the last few months has featured him with an uncharacteristic grin. He was smiling at Disneyland with his kids, smiling when meeting up with old friends, smiling during meetings with Migos, and happy to be hitting the movies with his wife, Kim Kardashian West. After going through what can only be described as a rough patch towards the end of the last year, it’s nice to see the 21-time Grammy Award winner in a good spirits and making headlines for the right reasons. But other than retreating from the spotlight and getting some much needed rest, what changed?
We do know Kanye West recently got himself a new pair of jeans. And what guy doesn’t enjoy some fresh denim? He’s been relentlessly sporting a pair of slim-fit denim in a gray wash (a style we already know West loves) with white paint splatters. Now, a cool pair of jeans might not seem like much to the uninitiated, but as any denim-devoted guy will tell you, finding and wearing jeans you love to death can be the difference between a good and bad day.
However, the specific pair West is wearing so much isn’t your average paint splattered jeans, and they’re definitely not DIY. They’re a vintage pair of Helmut Lang jeans, often dubbed the “painter jeans.” And ask any designer denim aficionado and they will tell you that these are a grail of the highest order.
It isn’t just the splatter detail that makes these so special, but the fact that there are only a finite amount of pairs out there (the brand hasn’t made them since, well, Helmut Lang stopped being run by the actual man named Helmut Lang in 2007). It’s hard to say exactly when Yeezy’s pair came out, but at least one eBay listing indicates the gray wash and white paint versions were issued in 2000.
The jeans are rare, but not quite a 1 of 1 run, meaning you can still find the same ones—for a price. Your best bet is to check sites like Grailed, but currently all of the pairs available are between a 28 and 32 (which in our experience are more likely to fit like the 2017 idea of 30 inch waist). The good news for guys wanting to get ‘Ye’s look for themselves is that scouring resellers isn’t the only place to find it. Brands like Off-White, Armani Exchange, and even Re-Done (which re-cuts vintage pairs of Levi’s) are all making paint-splattered options worth considering.
West’s vintage Lang jeans pair well with his recent penchant for vintage tees and hats mixed with designer pieces, like when he wore the jeans with his own Adidas Yeezy Powerphase Calabasas sneakers, a Balenciaga flannel shirt and vintage Public Enemy hat. And they still stack (meaning bunch up around the ankles) like West’s jeans have for years, but are a slightly more dad-ready fit that isn’t quite as skinny as the Saint Laurent denim we’ve become accustomed to seeing him wear out and about. Now that Mr. West is on the backside of 40 year sold, we thing the move to a slightly looser denim fit is a smart move. But at the end of the day, if they make him happy, then that’s really that matters, right?