5 Pairs of Raw Denim Jeans for Summer

united in colors fit pic

Though it comes a little late in the game, if you’re still looking for a pair of raw denim for the upcoming months, we’ve provided 5 pairs of ready-for-summer denim for the benefit of you and your legs. We tried to make this list a bit more appropriate for the hot muggy summer weather, so each pair on this list has qualities that define “summer denim”.

In our opinion, this includes lightweight denim, lighter blue tones, slightly looser fits and even a pre-washed pair (we know, for shame…). The motivation behind this list is to pass along a few good options for denim without bathing your legs in sweat on a beach day or those hot summer nights.

1. Rogue Territory – Stanton Grey Caste

Rogue Territory Stanton Front and Side

Lets be honest, we couldn’t start this list with a more appropriate pair of jeans. Rogue Territory’s Stanton Grey Caste are made from 10 oz Kaihara denim, and clearly contain the qualities one would dream of in a summer pair of jeans. The slim straight fit so your legs don’t feel like a sweaty mess, the lightweight denim allow for more flexibility and breathability, and with the lighter weight you wont have to wait long for them to break in either.

Another neat characteristic is the split selvedge on the jean. It adds a different look to your pair while minimizing wasted denim during the manufacturing process due to the fact that a ‘split cut’ uses more of the denim per pant. As a result, not only does it look unique, but means you’re being ecologically friendly too.

Available at: Rogue Territory for $195.00

2. Momotaro – Lot 1705

Momotaro Lot 1705 M Fit

Second up is another lightweight denim from one of the heavyweights in the jeans game. These Momotaro Lot 1705 lightweight jeans are made from 10oz Momotaro original Japanese selvedge denim 100% Zimbabwe cotton so you know you’re getting a comfortable lightweight pair of jeans cut from the highest quality denim. The 1705’s  are low/mid rise slim tapered fits which provides space around the thighs without giving up on the “skinny” look. In all honestly, this would be my pick for a rich dark indigo pair of jeans for the summer.

Available at: Blue In Green for $225.00

3. Lee – 101 Rider (Dips Dry)

Lee Rider 101

Lee’s 101 Rider 12oz denim is takes a modern take on a classic. This pair might be a bit heavier in weight than the previous two pairs but contains merits that makes them a strong candidate for a great summer pair. The 101 Rider has been dipped in natural indigo 5 times which gives it a greyish-blue tone, which should work well with brighter summer clothing. Plus, after a whole summers wear, that greyish tone will be fading in nicely in time for the fall.

We must also note that Lee’s 101 Rider are a semi slim pair with Lee’s signature left handed twill. Why is left hand twill so important you might ask? We would answer because the slightly open weave creates a lining-like feel which makes the overall denim softer. When that softness is paired with a semi slim cut; perfect.

Available at: Tenue de Nîmes for $266.00.

4. Railcar Fine Goods – Spikes x005

Railcar Fine Goods Spikes 0005

Railcar Fine Goods have really tailored their offerings to be both economic and high in quality. RFG’s Spikes x005 are a slim-straight low rise lightweight pair that is ideal for hotter weather. These are the lightest pair they offer in a 120z  Cone Mills blue line selvedge. The Spikes x005 also have a light indigo hue which will fade nicely during summertime activities. The Cone Mills denim will exhibit a “streaky appearance” when fades start to come in.

Available for $175.00

5. Levis Vintage Clothing – 1954 501z (Thumper Wash)

LVC 501

Being that Levis Vintage Clothing is my personal denim forte I would like to throw a bit of a curve-ball to our readers. Yes – I understand that we specifically deal with “raw” denim on this site but we must understand that you can’t have a summer outfit without some color. I’m not talking about wearing neon blue pants so you look like a blue highlighter, but a pair with a distinct shade that can really make an outfit pop. These 1954 501Z have just that. The 501z are a 12 0z red selvedge from Cone Mills that sits nicely at the waist and features a zipper fly with a slight taper from the knee down.

I personally have a lot of experience with this pair, the fades on this are real crisp and authentic, the color is a rusty bluish-green accurate to the look of a worn-in pair. You can’t go wrong with these in your summer closet. It’s important to note with this pair, you will likely want to size down for an optimal fit

Available at: UNIONMADE for $375.00

Alexander Ramos

Based in Los Angeles, Alex spends his time studying management at California State University, Northridge. He also interns for HVW8 art gallery during his spare time. Brands that he enjoys consist of Edwin jeans, Iron Heart, Levis and Momotaro.

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  • Felix

    Raw does not equal pre-washed denim.
    The header clearly says “5 pairs of raw denim jeans for summer”
    Still not understanding why that LVC is in the list.

    • growe13

      Exactly! The fades are not authentic, and over 350$ for pre-washed is something we here don’t (usually) like. I could be wrong, but I just don’t get why it’s here either.

    • Vinyl Scratch

      Couldn’t agree more. The fact is, no matter how “close” fades on pre-washed may look to authentic fades, they just aren’t, and they never will look close enough to be deemed passable. Even taking the fact that they’re LVC into account, they still look like a pair of True Religion’s (minus the tacky pockets). We can read about pre-washed jeans for summer on any other site, but they have no place here on Rawr.

    • disqus_uAxMyyWeiI

      agreed, the LVC stick out like a sore, unimaginative thumb.

      • AllWhite_AllRight

        the idea behind lvc fades is that theyre reprod after actual vintage/antique jeans that have been found previously worn by people 60 years ago and beyond. tbh all raw denim selection of jeans is so 2007….

  • Chris

    My Momotaro jean choice for summer were the 0702SL 13oz with silk as the weft. Absolutely fantastic.

    • BillygoatsGruff312

      Those are pricey but look very nice. Why didn’t they go with the two tone stitching on these?

      • Chris

        I’m really pleased with them as a choice, they don’t seem lightweight and soft really until you switch to another pair of jeans and notice the significant contrast. That’s good for me because I still want to feel like I’m wearing denim.
        It will be interesting to see how they fade as they weren’t hard to break in due to the silk construction; in turn this flexibility may mean lower contrast honeycombs etc. I assume.
        In answer to your question what do you mean by two tone stitching? I’m clearly a bit ignorant.

  • Devan Prettypaul

    why no naked and famous? please put naked and famous on the list

  • Devan Prithipaul

    I like the Lee ones the most.

    • hi devan <3

      no, i like you the most 😉

  • Grandier

    Naked & Famous Royalcast Selvedge and United Stock Dry Goods’ 12.5oz denims are good choices for the sub $200 summer denim IMO.

  • anderand

    I’m starting to really find those dry Lee 101 Riders really sexy these days.

  • BillygoatsGruff312

    If only those momo 1705s had battle stripes. Alas.

  • Kevin

    On point with the Rogue Territory

  • JF

    where can i buy online levis vintage clothing..??