Confessions of a Denim Collector feat. Davis Gooch

July 15th, 2012

Men don’t just wear jeans. We have relationships with jeans.

And like most relationships, they get better with age and the key is appreciating their unique imperfections.

Nashville native Davis Gooch is a denimhead who has studied the ins and outs of the jean business. Along the way he has also put together an amazing collection of perfectly broken-in pairs.

Here he shows us the benefits of choosing the right pieces, making them your own, and wearing the hell out of them.

    1. Tough Guy Tuxedo

    “In 2009 this awesome couple opened a vintage and denim boutique in the skeleton of an old service station in Nashville TN.  This is one of the early runs of their ‘Willie’ – a straight leg jean with an excellent fit and subtle details. This pair is from 2009, made right inside the pump station using Japanese selvedge.”

    “The denim vest is one I’ve been wearing and adding to for about five years. It’s a vintage Levi’s Trucker model I found (with sleeves) at a Salvation Army down in Tennessee.”

    2. Perfectly Imperfect

    “This is an interesting pair of washed out Levi’s 501s because they’re from 1983, the last year they made most of their 501s on old 30” shuttle looms (for a finished edge on the outer leg seam, or selvedge line).”

    “An easy summer move. 55% linen 45% cotton knit crewneck sweater. I think I wore this thing for 4 days straight after I got it…feels like I’ve had it for years.

    Bugle Boy low-top lace ups. Real clean, real 90s.”

    3. It Ain’t All Gotta Be Slim

    “A more dressed up take on denim.

    Ironically the denim piece is a replica of a budget version of the Levi’s 501XX from the 1920’s called the 201. It’s a little wider through the leg, with all the original specs.”

    If you’re going to put suspender buttons on your jeans, make them metal denim button and put them on the outside of the waistband.
    “I found the Johnston & Murphy Suede loafers at a thrift store in Nashville (go figure), and had them resoled.”

    4. Going Natural

    “These are natural selvedge slim-fit jeans from RRL. Same thing as dark blue selvedge jeans, just sans ‘blue’. Skip the indigo dip-dye process and this is what you’ve got.”

    “The lightweight floral shirt is seasonally appropriate, and works in more times than you would think.

    The shoes are Johnston & Murphy brogue cap-toes, with tough vibram soles. Classic American company, with headquarters in my hometown.”

    5. If My Clothes Could Talk

    “I know this Australian fellow who just moved to NYC that loves to dig up great vintage gear.  He somehow gets into these sweet rag houses in New Jersey for cheap, so I asked him to find me some banged up jeans for me. He caught some awesome Lee 101s that are kind of ‘ill fitting’, which I’m really into.

    I love this herringbone worker’s jacket by Supreme in a beautiful lemon/cream cotton with contrasting dark horn buttons. This is an example of how a brand that is typically associated with streetwear can showcase some serious cut & sewn skills. James Jebbia (founder of Supreme) is a huge influence of mine and a mastermind of the downtown NYC retail realm”

    “Shoes are a staple: G.H. Bass & Co. Weejuns. Penny loafers, if you will.”

    Thanks for reading.

    Yours in style,

    Dan Trepanier


    Photography by Alex Crawford.

    • Sandeep Jain

      Nice style! some might think it shabby but i personal think it is all about attitude. Such cool collection of denim and a perfect blend of combination and style.Even I have similar denim jeans from monteil i will try to wear them in this style.

    • Joe

      Please Excuse my ignorance – but what is the logo from on the back of the denim vest?

      • Mega

        the brand is called crooks & castles … so I’m guessing he cut the logo from a sweatshirt

    • Arron

      @cam sorry for the delay. I wear a lot of similar clothing to this. Denim and vintage clothing with a mix of suits and other button ups ect. I’m a huge fan of this just because I think it targets people that don’t always dress in suits. Some people may think its not “clean” or dressy but in my line of work I’ve ruined a lot of nice clothing with hair color. I respect everyone’s style but I think this is a great expression of art thru clothing. This just seemed to be an excellent post about how to wear denim. The line that says denim is like a relationship because really it is a second skin. Nudie jeans changed all that for me by the transformation and history behind the wears of selvege denim. Too each is own thou. I guess I was just super stoked to see something like this. Soon I’ll have a tumbler up in which I will personally send u a link to see the kind of clothing I wear on a daily basis. Cheers

    • Tim

      Having style is so much about being comfortable in what you wear. That’s why, I believe, having a “relationship” with your jeans is such an accurate statement. If I could, I would probably wear my favorite pair of Levi’s 513’s and my denim jacket everyday. Sadly, I can’t. But, it’s always the outfit I’ve felt most comfortable in and I can style it in such a variety of ways. As this post clearly illustrates, denim is unbelievably versatile. Though possibly the most simple outfit exhibited in his post, the red sweater with the vintage Levi’s 501s. The look is basic, but it exudes comfort style and ease (partially, in part by the fact that he isn’t wearing a shirt under the sweater.

      Not usually one to shamelessly plug my blog, but I feel my post on my love affair with the denim jacket is relevant here:

    • Marco

      Wow, talk about heated!
      It’s just denim, folks!

      And Dan, you’re killing me with that half tucked/untucked look dude. This guy is so effortless in his style choices that for him to fully tuck his shirt in, then untuck one side for no good reason seems a bit, I don’t know, out of character? It’s like rolling up one pant leg and leaving the other unrolled.

      Obviously, this is a styling choice you made and I respect that, but it just feels way out of place for this post considering the subject you’ve chosen to profile.

      Keep the posts coming man!

      • Gooch

        Oops, my shirt came untucked on one side when we were shooting this…

    • KJ

      This looks so natural and cool. His confidence and attitude shine through in the clothing. Top quality article, as we’ve come to expect from TSB.

    • Daniel

      I love the bugle boy shoes who makes them???

      • Arron

        Bugle boy is the company

    • Arron

      Anyone who is on the so called “disagree” side doesn’t know fashion as a whole. As far as vintage being compaired to old… Old denim is awesome, and If u ever get a chance buy a pair of selvage denim and wear them in. Like it said in the post it becomes a relationship. Like a second skin, I love my nudies and I’ve been wearing em for over a year with out a wash. It’s a commitment and a lifestyle. As a thrifter also, i find awesome used clothing all the time, I could post outfits right now of clothing that u would think I paid full price for at nordstroms. I just don’t get how u couldn’t like this if your into fashion. I have looked at this post 4 times and each time I love it more. @mike he’s probably using murrays or maybe layrite. There’s a lot of different pomadea for hair and even if Murray’s takes a week to get out it still works like a charm.

      • Gooch

        Good call Arron, it is Murray’s.

        • Arron

          Ha had a feeling. I cut hair for a living and its what I use. Btw way huge fan of your style. My favorite post thus far. I’ve tried to locate those rrl jeans and they’re impossible. Super cool looks thou man. If your ever in Cali and need a haircut hit me up.

          • cam

            @arron – what is “fashion as a whole”? just curious..

          • Gooch

            Thanks, man!

    • JON

      Long time reader, first time poster.
      Ive followed the blog on and off, i find some of the styles featured somewhat repetitive. But this blew my socks off. (no pun intended)
      It had been a while since TSB went in a different direction (from bespoke clothing, to looking “proper” in different occasions/events.) Yes, looking formal is key 80% of the time as I’ve learned to live under the motto “life is the occasion, rise to it “-mr magorium’s wonder emporium. But sometimes a man’s gotta be a man. Wear the same pair of jeans for days and look refreshingly rugged. (There was a post on pulling off the rugged look earlier, I thought it was hardly rugged..THIS post is the epitome of rugged) I love all the looks here. I was definitely inspired to bring out the jeans from solitary confinement and let them see the sun again after reading. Pulled the all-american look yesterday at the office. Got in trouble, sure, but it was well worth it. haha

    • Mike

      Just wondering what hair product he uses? That is some wicked hair! Thanks!

    • Martin

      I don’t want to be too negative. Obviously his guy is into his own sense of style, which is fine however he is just too damn skinny and most of his clothes are way too big for him. This detracts from his overall appearance and, I think ruins his look. Look #6 is the only one that is anywhere near decent where is isn’t swimming in excess fabric.

      I never understand how you get people that are obviously into fashion yet completely miss the point that you have a “decent” body to hang the clothes on as well as the fashion sense. If he put half as much effort into gaining a little weight, he would look 100 times better or just buy clothes that fit correctly…

    • Emanuel Iuhas

      The outfit no. 4 is my fav…
      Thx for inspiring!

    • Tony

      Where do we draw the line between “vintage” and just plain OLD!?!?! Some of these items are just that … Old! Vintage items should represent a nice, well kept clean item. Just like the ones Dan and company wear.

      • SB

        I disagree, especially in respect to denim. In some cases, the more beat up, the better.

        Thanks for reading.

        • Michael

          Beat up is one thing but some the jeans just look dirty. I like the simplicity of look # 2 but those jeans need a wash. Looks 4 & 5 are my faves.

        • James M

          Denim and leather, the older and more lived in the better. It gives it character and a story. I love it.

    • Pablo

      First of all, I’m a huge fan of your blog. That being said, i think I have to agree with the “against” side in here. Yes, style is personal and yes, every now and then a guy will come along who can pull this off. But let’s be honest, 99 percent of us would just look plain sloppy with any of this.
      One could argue that he has developed “a different style” in the same way one could consider Lady Gaga a fashion guru, it’s a personal choice. However I don’t think Mr. Gooch could ever be considered the “best dressed real man”.

      • SB

        Thanks Pablo.

        I’d like this to be less about being “for” or “against”, or being the “best dressed man”. It’s more about personal expression and learning from different perspectives of “style”.


    • Mike

      Dont listen to the haters Dan. I can go to 12 other blogs today and see the same look with the same advice, and I would learn nothing new. I learned something new from this post. You have the balls to go in a different direction, props to you. Also, fashion starts on the streets…streets, runways, stores. Most dont have the guts it takes to wear what is not “acceptable” to others in their group. Keep it up.

      • SB

        Thanks Mike. You get it. It’s sometimes frustrating that so many men are closed-minded to anything outside of what is expected.


    • Derek

      Great post! I’m also a denimhead so I appreciate the love. That’s a whole lot of Supreme for my liking though haha. I see enough of that on Sufu and the other forums.

    • Matt M

      Interesting post. While I can appreciate his finds and all, he literally looks like a homeless person in look number two. I see dozens of people in this same ‘look’ in Los Angeles and hardly call them fashionable when they’re asking me for spare change.

      Same thing goes for the pants in number six. If you’re working on the house or doing manual labor, sure. If you’re doing anything else, these just look sloppy.

      That said, I do like number five and even number four if he had bothered to tuck his whole shirt in.

    • Alan

      Great post. Top notch photos.

      Great denim collection.


      What are your favorite denim brands? I prefer RRL because the quality is unmatched in my opinion and you can’t beat Made in USA.

    • Arron

      It’s surprising to hear that anyone whos into fashion would consider these looks not the right way to dress. In my opinion this is the best post you’ve ever had. As a huge denim collector and Levi’s fan this post is awesome. If everyone wore the same thing it would be a dull world. To each is own thou. Keep it up Dan! You guys always up to date on everything that’s stylish.

    • mrdrapedin

      He is definitely not part of the norm that you see on blogs but I definitely dig the look for him. The floral shirt is really dope to me. I always wanted to get one but i could never really get into but after looking at him wearing it doesn’t look bad at all.

    • Avery Jolly

      I couldn´t do it, but he rocks that shit. Kudos for having a personal sense of style.

    • Gazman

      I’m new to your blog; discovered it a few days ago and have spent a lot of time reading your excellent posts. I like your style, and you have me thinking seriously about my clothing sense. One thing though: I find the short trousers/no socks look over done. Just about every pic I’ve seen show the no socks look. In some outfits and with certain types of shoes it looks great, but in others it looks a tad silly. I can’t imagine wearing no socks with a leather lace-up would be comfortable.

      • SB

        I guess the best answer is, going sockless is not necessarily a “look” for some guys. It’s just what they prefer in hot weather.

        Some guys, including me, are sockless most of the summer. I find it easier, breezier and I like the feel of leather on my feet (especially in a well made shoe).

        It’s not for everybody, but it’s not purposely a “statement” for others.


        • Dan

          I agree, going sockless isn’t quite as affective a move for some folks. Intentionally half-tucking your shirt in, well that’s a different story…

    • Yes

      This is unique, cool and real. Not like all the other “mainstream” staged shit on most blogs/magazines. You actually get a sense of who the guy is by the way he dresses…which is your message.

      Well done!

    • Desmond K

      The first half of this post was a little iffy for me. But looks 4,5, and 6 were pretty sweet with #4 probably being my favorite. I love seeing different “styles” of style. That’s what keeps things interesting.

    • cam

      i know this gentleman is a guest of the site and im sure he’s a great guy but this is simply not at all how a man should dress imo. im very surprised he is featured here.

      • SB

        Hey Cam. The reason we feature different people on the site is to show that style is personal and self expressive.

        Our purpose is to inspire and help men find their own style, not necessarily copy any of the looks featured.

        We all have our own story and our own swagger, that’s what makes it worth talking about.


        • Steven

          yea I understand what you are saying Dan but I kind of agree with Cam. Its like a guy that wears an over-sized suit with square toed shoes.. he might have all the swagger in the world but that wont make the look any better. I am a fan of a lot of your stuff but I just find most of his stuff slovenly and unkempt. I respect that he feels confident in his look but I would view him the same way I would view a guy in a ugly over-sized suit. But to each his own..

          • Tyler

            I’ve been following this blog for a few months, and one of the things I love about you guys is that you’re not concerned about what’s “popular”. You wear whatever you want to and if others don’t like it,too bad. That’s what style is:a representation of yourself through clothing.The tough guy tuxedo look and the suspenders/denim combo are the two best looks hands down. And if I ever see this guy, he’s getting a beer, no questions asked.