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Lee 101J Jacket 1946 Model - to wash or not to wash?

xmr

One of the Regulars
Messages
227
Location
Germany
So regardless of the temperature on the first wash, the shrinkage will be the same?

Basically yes. At least with sanforized denim. I had a sanforized pair made by Edwin and I lost a lot of weight so I washed it at the highest temperature possible to try and shrink it - the fadings blurred a bit but the size didn't change. I normally washed it using 30 degrees Celsius and I noticed a little bit of shrinking after the first wash - nothing more from then on..
 
Last edited:

yakima

One of the Regulars
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136
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where it's at
To clarify, Unsanforized denim will normally shrink by around 10% on first soak/wash.

Sanforization aims to reduce that by 50% - so you can still expect shrinkage of up to 5%, especially on, say, a hot wash.
 

Dagenham Dave

One of the Regulars
Messages
229
Location
Australia
So regardless of the temperature on the first wash, the shrinkage will be the same?

Basically yes. At least with sanforized denim. I had a sanforized pair made by Edwin and I lost a lot of weight so I washed it at the highest temperature possible to try and shrink it - the fadings blurred a bit but the size didn't change. I normally washed it using 30 degrees Celsius and I noticed a little bit of shrinking after the first wash - nothing more from then on..

To clarify, Unsanforized denim will normally shrink by around 10% on first soak/wash.

Sanforization aims to reduce that by 50% - so you can still expect shrinkage of up to 5%, especially on, say, a hot wash.

Ok. Now I (think I) understand... HOT wash or COLD wash , shrinkage of "sanforized" denim (of which my jacket is made) on the first wash will be the same, and nothing on subsequent washes?
 
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Dagenham Dave

One of the Regulars
Messages
229
Location
Australia
Yesterday I washed my jacket in warm water in the machine, and it has shrunk too much in length.

It has shrunk 1.55" in length, and is now 23.25" in length (centre-back), which is way too short for me.

And this is much more than what was suggested by the seller:

JACKET LENGTH…2cm(0.8inch)
CHEST WIDTH…1cm(0.4inch)
SHOULDER WIDTH…2cm(1inch)
SLEEVE LENGTH…4cm(1.6inch)

Damn!!! :mad:

If I buy another and hand wash it in COLD water like some of you have suggested, am I guaranteed that it won't shrink as much as it has after the warm machine wash?
 

navetsea

I'll Lock Up
Messages
6,711
Location
East Java
cotton will expand again after few wear right, probably have it wet a little and clip on some weight or pull it when damp would stretch it back quicker too.
 

andy b.

One of the Regulars
Messages
191
Location
PA, USA
Yesterday I washed my jacket in warm water in the machine, and it has shrunk too much in length.

It has shrunk 1.55" in length, and is now 23.25" in length (centre-back), which is way too short for me.

And this is much more than what was suggested by the seller:

JACKET LENGTH…2cm(0.8inch)
CHEST WIDTH…1cm(0.4inch)
SHOULDER WIDTH…2cm(1inch)
SLEEVE LENGTH…4cm(1.6inch)

Damn!!! :mad:

If I buy another and hand wash it in COLD water like some of you have suggested, am I guaranteed that it won't shrink as much as it has after the warm machine wash?

Did you put the jacket in the dryer at all? I have noticed that hot drying seems to cause more shrinkage than the washing.
 

wild_balls

Practically Family
Messages
594
Location
WESTCOAST OF SWEDEN
JUST A COLD SOAK FOR ABOUT 30 MINUTES! Then wear it when damp to get that perfect personal fit with wrinkling and all. Then lay it on a towel to dry slowly, be sure to lay it down like the it was worn! No heat.

Cheers Joakim
 

Dagenham Dave

One of the Regulars
Messages
229
Location
Australia
JUST A COLD SOAK FOR ABOUT 30 MINUTES! Then wear it when damp to get that perfect personal fit with wrinkling and all. Then lay it on a towel to dry slowly, be sure to lay it down like it was worn! No heat.

Cheers Joakim

That's consistent with advice here by the Denim Hunters, although they suggest lukewarm water: https://www.denimhunters.com/2012/05/leeriderjacket/.

My aim really is to give the jacket the washed look versus the dry denim look.

This is what my (now too short) warm machine washed Lee 101J looks like versus the dry denim:

Machine Washed.jpg vs. 006_main02.jpg


Is soaking sufficient to give the denim the washed look versus the dry denim look, or will this only be achieved by hand washing it with detergent?

If soaking is all that is needed to give the denim the washed look, should I soak it in COLD water like you advise (rather that lukewarm), to minimise shrinking even more?

Or is soaking for another reason?

Cheers,
Dave

PS. I have also contacted Denim Hunters for their advice.
 
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wild_balls

Practically Family
Messages
594
Location
WESTCOAST OF SWEDEN
Just cold water in a bucket or likewise! When dry it will feel quite stiff but that will give it the worn look faster! I have done it with several jackets. Take a look at the mister freedom web page for instructions on denim.

Cheers Joakim
 

Dagenham Dave

One of the Regulars
Messages
229
Location
Australia
Just cold water in a bucket or likewise! When dry it will feel quite stiff but that will give it the worn look faster! I have done it with several jackets. Take a look at the mister freedom web page for instructions on denim.

Cheers Joakim

Thanks Joakim. I will try that when my second jacket arrives.
 

tonypaj

Practically Family
Messages
659
Location
Divonne les Bains, France
That's consistent with advice here by the Denim Hunters, although they suggest lukewarm water: https://www.denimhunters.com/2012/05/leeriderjacket/.

My aim really is to give the jacket the washed look versus the dry denim look.

This is what my (now too short) warm machine washed Lee 101J looks like versus the dry denim:

View attachment 31928 vs. View attachment 31929


Is soaking sufficient to give the denim the washed look versus the dry denim look, or will this only be achieved by hand washing it with detergent?

If soaking is all that is needed to give the denim the washed look, should I soak it in COLD water like you advise (rather that lukewarm), to minimise shrinking even more?

Or is soaking for another reason?

Cheers,
Dave

PS. I have also contacted Denim Hunters for their advice.

Now that you know how much it shrinks, why not buy bigger by the amount of shrinkage and redo. You get the look and size (hopefully). Bad part of that is that you never know about QC with the manufacturers, different jackets react differently and sizes labelled vary in practice. Good luck, anyway, 101J is great, I have two from early 70s. They are short, no doubt, and require higher rise trousers.
 

Dagenham Dave

One of the Regulars
Messages
229
Location
Australia
Now that you know how much it shrinks, why not buy bigger by the amount of shrinkage and redo. You get the look and size (hopefully). Bad part of that is that you never know about QC with the manufacturers, different jackets react differently and sizes labelled vary in practice. Good luck, anyway, 101J is great, I have two from early 70s. They are short, no doubt, and require higher rise trousers.

The problem is, the size 44 is virtually impossible to get.
 

tonypaj

Practically Family
Messages
659
Location
Divonne les Bains, France
The problem is, the size 44 is virtually impossible to get.

Then for the look you want, I'd follow Joakim's advice. Once dry, possibly leave it out in the sun, it will fade, if the original fading with Joakim's treatment is not enough. I have no idea if sunlight shrinks a dry garment, I would not think so. Then again sun in your part of the world is a whole lot stronger than here. Maybe others can help.

We're in the middle of heatwave, and here that's anything over 30 C, been going on for the last 2-3 weeks. Got to 40 last week, highly unusual. I'm trying to get the stink out of a 70+ year old A-2. Hopefully the heat helps.
 

winterland1

Practically Family
Messages
535
Location
minneapolis
Wearing the heck out of it will get you the look you're going after. Yes you do get some fades etc from washing but wearing is where they really come into play.
 

Dagenham Dave

One of the Regulars
Messages
229
Location
Australia
Then for the look you want, I'd follow Joakim's advice. Once dry, possibly leave it out in the sun, it will fade, if the original fading with Joakim's treatment is not enough. I have no idea if sunlight shrinks a dry garment, I would not think so. Then again sun in your part of the world is a whole lot stronger than here. Maybe others can help.

We're in the middle of heatwave, and here that's anything over 30 C, been going on for the last 2-3 weeks. Got to 40 last week, highly unusual. I'm trying to get the stink out of a 70+ year old A-2. Hopefully the heat helps.

Wearing the heck out of it will get you the look you're going after. Yes you do get some fades etc from washing but wearing is where they really come into play.

It's not so much the fading that I'm after. I just want the dry denim to have the darker look it gets after one wash:

WASHED once: Machine Washed.jpg vs. DRY: 006_main02.jpg
 

EmergencyIan

Practically Family
Messages
918
Location
New York, NY
How did we ever survive without all of the denim experts?

Just like with jeans, you have to go up, slightly, in size to allow for shrinkage. Denim is meant to be washed, dried and worn and washed and dried again. Whether it's boutique denim or a pair of Levi's from JC Penney's, denim always shrinks (sanforized or not). It would be wise to employ common sense when making a purchase. This denim shrinking when washing and, especially, machine dried "thing" is not new information, folks.

- Ian
 

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