Tuesday 17 January 2017

We tried Pippa O'Connor's new denim range to see if it's worth the hype

Published 16/11/2016 | 09:58

Sophie Donaldson wears POCO by Pippa jeans at The Merrion Hotel. Picture: Tony Gavin
Sophie Donaldson wears POCO by Pippa jeans at The Merrion Hotel. Picture: Tony Gavin
Sophie Donaldson wears POCO by Pippa jeans at The Merrion Hotel. Picture: Tony Gavin
Sophie Donaldson wears POCO by Pippa jeans at The Merrion Hotel. Picture: Tony Gavin
Pippa O'Connorat the launch of POCO by Pippa. Picture: Brian McEvoy
Pippa O'Connor's POCO jeans. Picture: Lili Forberg/Weekend Magazine
Sophie Donaldson wears POCO by Pippa jeans at The Merrion Hotel. Picture: Tony Gavin
Pippa O'Connor pictured with models at the launch of POCO by Pippa. Picture: Brian McEvoy
Sophie Donaldson wears POCO by Pippa jeans at The Merrion Hotel. Picture: Tony Gavin

Confession: I am not a jeans girl.

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I can count on one hand the amount of pairs I have owned, the common denominator being that they all had the air of novelty about them. There were the ridiculous bell bottoms so high waisted they could have doubled as a push up bra.

Then the straight legged pair with a back pocket embroidered with brass coins, my arse jangling like a maraca as I walked. Most recently consigned to the charity bin was a pair of drop-crotch, splotchy acid washed, high-waisted, pleated pair so offensive my girlfriend couldn’t look me in the eye when I wore them. 

So when presented with the task of road testing Pippa O’Connor’s latest venture, her POCO denim range, I was sceptical. I do not wear jeans, or maybe I just have terrible taste in denim. Can the wonder woman that is O’Connor find me my perfect pair? 

POCO was born of Pippa’s own love of jeans which she considers a uniform in her wardrobe, and the comfort factor was at the core of her design process. “As a fashion lover, style is always at the forefront for me but comfort is also just as important,” she says.

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"I thought about my normal every day uniform and what I’d love to wear.” 

Despite my own patchy history with jeans, I do love them. There is no other garment as louche, timeless and effortlessly sexy as a good pair of jeans.

A flick through POCO’s Instagram, which already has nearly 40k followers despite only launching Monday, is enough to make anybody pine for a pair. This is the stuff denim dreams are made of and I want in on the action.  

The Saturday Night

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There are only five styles so far, including one pair of maternity jeans, so there’s not much room for error. I first try The Saturday Night, a pair of skinnies in a deep charcoal. Paired with a black turtleneck it’s nice to have some contrast between the shades, lest anyone think I am going for my typical ‘stagehand’ look.

The denim is 97.7% cotton with 2.3% elastane and despite the generous stretch, the fabric is sturdy. The skinny cut is form fitting but with plenty of room for a large lunch. The Saturday Night is intended to be your night out saviour and the outfit possibilities with these are endless. Subtle but sexy, they would be fantastic with this season’s velvet or a lurex cami.

Likewise they are comfortable enough for lounging around and the tight fit would be ideal for a big slouchy jumper for the day after the night before. Saturday night, Saturday morning, you are going to want to wear these bad boys all week long.

The Slimmers

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I faced the next pair with some trepidation. Sometimes between sizes, I had pondered asking for a size smaller but when I saw these I thanked the heavens I hadn’t.

The size 8 could be mistaken at first glance for children’s jeans. The leg was so narrow I put my arm into it and with much alarm found it fitted rather well. I had visions of Tony, my unsuspecting photographer, being forced to eject me from them in the cubicle. 

With a breath so deep I may have ingested a rib bone I slipped into them, and miracle of miracles, they fitted like a glove. Take my word for it and don’t be afraid if these look like they may be a little snug. The 2% lycra is your friend and really works to pull you up and in. They are cut to sit just above your hips which creates a rather fetching silhouette, if I do say so myself.

Yes, you will probably fancy yourself a little bit in these, and for good reason. They are sleek and sexy and everything a good skinny should be, but unlike The Saturday Night, you may want to go for a slightly smaller lunch.

I stop chatting myself up and peel off The Slimmers. They were going to be a hard act to follow and barefoot and pantless, I already felt scruffy without them.

Maybe I had found my perfect pair? Was this denim nirvana?

The Off Duty

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Thinking I had been missing out on this all my life, I pulled on The Off Duty and my heart was torn.

Slightly baggy where The Slimmers are skin tight, a little roughed up compared to The Slimmers’ sleek indigo blue, they are the very opposite of each other but every bit as good. A far more generous cut gives you plenty of room around the waistline, which sits on your true waist, and the slouchy leg is ultra-comfortable.

 Forget a big lunch, you could gorge yourself on a buffet and still slip into these. Despite the name, you could easily tart these up with a crop top and heels for a more cool-girl aesthetic for a night out.

My bad jean curse has been broken. Bravo, Mrs O’Connor. I finally understand why this pair of pants has been a wardrobe stalwart for more than a century. A good pair of jeans makes you feel very, very good and I am taken with all three.

Now instead of choosing ridiculous jeans and regretting them in years to come, my biggest problem is deciding which one of these I will be getting first.

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