Crowned “The Denim Queen” of Manhattan by The Cut, Judi Rosen of Judi Rosen New York is the multi-talented denim founder and 00’s icon behind the cult followed brand you may not have heard of.

Judi Rosen and her pup
Judi Rosen NY

With a career spanning over two decades, Rosen went from mastering the world of design and development to cultivating a retail space that would attract a cult-like following of West Villagers and 00’s culture creators alike, so it’s no wonder this oughties icon cracked the code to the best booty-loving jeans in the biz.

The Good The Bad and the Ugly, was the go to for celebs, stylists and those in-the-know back in its hay-day before abruptly closing in 2008. However Judi’s following wasn’t prepared to go anywhere and neither were her signature “perky-butt” jeans. Opening her namesake store in 2018 Judi Rosen New York was a much anticipated new neighbor of Nolita, Manhattan.

Judi Rosen New York Storefront, Brooklyn NY.

Recently highlighted as one of Vogue editor’s top denim picks for 2021, Rosen’s denim is known for its superior craftsmanship and impeccably flattering fit, produced in small batches in Los Angeles, made of only premium organic and natural fibers. Judi’s jeans are coveted, beloved, heirloom-esque, little treasures for anyone who owns a pair. Just a quick scroll through her instagram comments and you’ll see the devotion to perfectly preserving your pair of Judi Rosen New York’s.

The Judi Jean in 100% Natural Cotton
The High Waisted Judi Jean

"I accidentally zipped my seamless underwear into a pair of your jeans the other day when I was running out the door and I literally pulled into a parking lot, made my seat lay down, and ripped my panties so I wouldn't fuck up the zipper. That's love."

— @michally_k via Instagram

Like her jeans, Judi Rosen is a gem. We recently caught up with her via Instagram, (because how else do you do it these days!) to pick her brain on denim, being an absolute boss and how the hell she gets our butts to look so good.

The Zip Around Sailor Leg Jean
The Unisex Trouser

What influenced your love of denim?

Growing up in the 80’s, all I ever wanted was to wear a pair of Jordache jeans. I was super curvy at a really young age and realized the only way I could wear jeans is if I made them myself. Once I tackled making the first pair I was hooked. I love the challenge denim wash, construction & fitting the female form. 

What made you decide to start your own denim brand?

Like most things in my life… it just happened. In some ways I cherish my naive mindset that I possessed at the time. I had a talent for making form-fitting jeans so I went with it & since then have developed a real love for denim.

You make sure all your fabrics are organic or natural fibers – when did you see that ethical production was important?

Day one. I grew up in an environment that encouraged little to no waste, and creating what you need from scratch. Using organic & natural fibers is a my logical extension of this lifestyle. 

What is the most important aspect when you start the design process of some new jeans?

The fit!! I love finding unique denims and treating them in unusual ways while maintaining the look of a simple jean. But fit is always paramount, and because I wash all my collections this is super challenging. Each season I obsess over getting consistent sizing between styles & fabrics. Each season brings a new challenge and I get to reset and rethink my plan of attack.

How did that first iconic, butt loving jean come to fruition, was a difficult to perfect the patterns?

I’m bit of an obsessive so getting the fit perfect is super important to me. I’ve always had the ability to visualize 2D to 3D so pattern making comes naturally to me. The initial design was a translation of garter belts and stockings that I wore all the time.

How did your industry and personal experiences help you create “the best jean ever”?

I try to cultivate relationships as opposed to changing manufactures and mills. My design is unique so I find importance in having the people I work with know my style of construction & design.

You’ve been a female boss throughout your whole career, what are the most difficult and most rewarding parts?

I actually find being a “boss” the most intricate part of running my business. I love overseeing production, designing and merchandising, but having to manage employees is a huge learning curve that forces me to try and turn off my empathy and do what’s right for the bottom line.

And lastly what do you have planned for the future?

The business is constantly evolving. I would like to include prints back into the collection but I am currently choosing to be quite frugal considering the times we’re in. The one new development is a 5 pocket jean. It’s the first time I’ve made “normal” cut jeans! I found a super unique hemp indigo, so that will be the first version.

The Side Zip Sailor Leg in Vintage Engineer Stripe
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