I'm going to be perfectly honest here: I hate shopping for clothes. I know, I know. What kind of woman am I? One who doesn't cave to archaic gender stereotypes, I suppose. That said, I do have a soft spot for Target designs. And since I seldom venture to real clothing stores, picking up a pair of jeans while stocking up on cat litter is pretty much a match made in retail heaven.
So when my one pair of Denizen jeans had been pushed to the limit (which is to say: literally cracking at the seams), I added "jeans" to my shopping list and headed to Target, where I found their newest exclusive clothing line: Universal Thread.
"Wonderful!" I thought. "Two dollars cheaper than Denizen, but the material feels like it will have more than a three-month lifespan!"
So I tried on a few varieties before settling on mid-rise skinny (for the record: I normally despise skinny jeans and really wanted boot cut but, alas, their only boot cut offering came with rips and tears that would draw unwanted attention to – rather than hide – the fact that I live on a strict budget). I was otherwise fine with my decision until I removed the tags, washed the jeans, tucked in my cell phone, and then...
Dropped. My. Phone.
Yes, that's right, smartphone users. These jeans absolutely cannot accommodate a standard-size phone (and certainly not anything of the “plus” variety). In the vertical position, not even half of the phone tucks into the pocket. In a horizontal position, about 1/4 pops out. So you put your phone in the horizontal position, nervously hoping the phone gods will bless your device and keep it safe from harm.
But. There. Are. No. Phone. Gods.
In the past two weeks, I have dropped my phone near (but not "in," thank you fictional phone gods!) the toilet on two occasions. On hard cement: four times. On walks when I almost didn't hear the "thud!" as it landed on a softer surface: three times.
In short: it's a miracle I still have a working phone.
But it's not just "large" items like small phones that pop out. I've lost tissues, cough drops and keys. The pockets on these babies have been an absolute nightmare. And so I say to Target and Universal Thread:
- Pocket form should follow pocket function. If they aren't usable, they're useless.
- Women need pockets, too. A lack of functional pockets on women's clothing is an age-old problem, AND IT HAS TO STOP. (This is pretty much the same point as #1, but it bears repeating).
This pocket issue has been discussed ad nauseam, but instead of listening, the fashion industry just keeps giving us "slimming" designs (that's how Target describes the Universal Thread pockets) that serve zero functional purpose.
To be fair, I've since checked out the pockets on their hole-y boot cut model, and I'm happy to report they seem to be somewhat more realistic – though still not quite up to snuff.
Horrible pockets aside, there are some pros to this brand: the material is soft and flexible, and they are – as I mentioned before – slightly cheaper than Denizen despite being better made.
That said: I still deeply regret the purchase. Unless Target volunteers to replace my phone in the (inevitable) event that it is lost or shattered, these jeans are a ticking time bomb and must be destroyed. Sure, they only cost $25 up front, but I’m thinking $825 big picture.
I don’t know about you but I, for one, refuse to pay $825 for jeans. And I will never, ever again purchase pants without doing a quick “phone fit” test.
I suggest you do the same.
PS: It took incredible restraint for me to not include a “Universal Dread” joke in here somewhere. Oh, look! There it is now.
IN SUM: universal thread jeans
A REVIEW HAIKU
“What’s that sound?” you ask.
Just my phone hitting the ground.
Better pockets, please.
Pros: Affordable, durable and decent flex to the fabric
Cons: The front pockets are useless
TO BUY OR NOT TO BUY
Don't buy without trying them on -- and testing the pockets. Walk around and sit down to see if your goods stay where they belong.