Nordstrom draws criticism for $425 'mud' jeans

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Nordstrom is selling “mud-stained” jeans to the tune of $425.
They’re called the “Barracuda Straight Leg Jeans” and come with some sort of fake mud substance caked all over them. (It’s not clear what that substance is.) The knees, pockets and crotch of the jeans appear bear most of the faux brown muck.
Screenshot from Nordstrom's web site of their new "mud" jeans on sale for $425.
And as CNN discovered, “the dirt does not wash out, because it’s actually not real dirt.”
The jeans were designed by PRSP and are sold on Nordstrom’s website, which describes them this way:
"Heavily distressed medium-blue denim jeans in a comfortable straight-leg fit embody rugged, Americana workwear that’s seen some hard-working action with a crackled, caked-on muddy coating that shows you’re not afraid to get down and dirty."
A few people with jobs that involve getting “down and dirty” are pretty miffed.
Among them is Mike Rowe, the former host of TV’s “Dirty Jobs,” who channeled his befuddled anger in a Facebook post that’s been shared more than 13,500 times and liked more than 31,000 times as of Wednesday morning.
“This morning, for your consideration, I offer further proof that our country’s war on work continues to rage in all corners of polite society,” he wrote of the jeans. “Finally - a pair of jeans that look like they have been worn by someone with a dirty job . . . made for people who don’t.”
“But forget the jeans themselves for a moment, and their price, and look again at the actual description,” Rowe wrote. “‘Rugged Americana’ is now synonymous with a ‘caked-on, muddy coating.‘ Not real mud. Fake mud. Something to foster the illusion of work. The illusion of effort. Or perhaps, for those who actually buy them, the illusion of sanity.”
He added later in the post, “The Barracuda Straight Leg Jeans aren’t pants. They’re not even fashion. They’re a costume for wealthy people who see work as ironic — not iconic.”
The response from Twitter was swift.
As one person tweeted, “Welp, it’s official. Working class is en vogue.”
“If you want to look dirty and broke, here are those stupid dirty jeans,” tweeted another user. “I’ll stick to actual work.”
“My husband has jeans like this that he’s been wasting on car repair,” tweeted another.
The jokes spilled onto Nordstrom’s website but have since been deleted, according to Business Insider.

The Barricuda Straight Leg Jeans at Nordstrom come precaked with a mud-like substance that won't wash out.

One read, “This is a joke, right? Do you also sell jeans covered in cow manure? Oh, that must be the deluxe model.”
Another read, “Gotta love being able to look like I have fed the pigs, helped deliver a calf, and get the tractor unstuck without ever having to leave my BMW.”
Nordstrom, however, is used to such publicity.
Earlier this year, the company caught the public’s attention for selling a pair of jeans with square-cut holes at the knee, then covered in clear plastic. “Slick plastic panels bare your knees for a futuristic feel in tapered and cropped high-waist jeans,” read the description.
The “clear knee mom jeans,” as they were call, sold for $95.
It was one of the fashion trends to skip this spring our style reporter, Sara Bauknecht, wrote about.
And then there was the company’s “medium leather wrapped stone,” — medium-sized stone wrapped in leather.
“A paperweight? A conversation piece? A work of art? It’s up to you, but this smooth Los Angeles-area stone — wrapped in rich, vegetable-tanned American leather secured by sturdy contrast backstitching — is sure to draw attention wherever it rests, “ read the description, which also boasted of its “simplicity and functionality.” That functionality remains unclear.
The product sold out last year.
Some folks found a silver lining in the jeans (one that isn’t covered in mud).
One Facebook user wrote, “On a positive note, hard working guys everywhere can now sell the jeans they no longer want to wear for $400 bucks a pop!”