The History

Before the Canadian Tuxedo became a wardrobe staple, wearing an all-denim outfit was an often talked about fashion faux-pas. Case in point: In 1951, legendary jazz musician Bing Crosby was refused entry into a Vancouver (Get it? Canadian?) hotel at the peak of his career, simply because he was wearing head-to-toe denim rather than a classic suit. Thus the now popularized term “Canadian Tuxedo” was born and denim, which was once looked upon solely as a working-class fabric to be worn and torn, became innovative, statement-making, and très chic.

In the 1950s, denim outfits were typically associated with rebellious Elvis-loving “greasers,” who unofficially declared skinny jeans as their uniform after the King was seen in a 1956 mugshot sporting his own Canadian Tuxedo. In the 70s and 80s, the Canadian tuxedo was re-introduced as a retro throwback (which we now refer to as mom jeans), and in the 90s as denim washes became a more substantial focal point in fashion, new takes on the style began to be explored. But it was in the early 00s that the Canadian tuxedo got arguably its biggest moment: when Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake walked the 2001 American Music Awards in matching looks. Iconique.

How-To Denim-on-Denim, à la française

It takes more than simply finding two pieces of denim to wear together to create the perfect denim-on-denim look, especially if you’re looking to achieve that “I’m totally not trying too hard,” French-girl chic look. Here are some tips to help you land the effortless, yet oh-so-enviable French Canadian Tuxedo look.

Play with Proportion

Denim outfits are made more interesting when you play around with proportions. If you are opting for a skinny jean, like the iconic ba&sh Aimie Jeans, try an oversized button-down, jacket-like shirt, like the Quentin Top. And always remember: it is all in the tuck. Start by tucking your shirt at the front and move your way all around, tucking along the way. Smooth to push all excess fabric as far down as you can to avoid bulk. Now, put your hands in the air like you’re at the best dance part of your life to naturally untuck the ideal amount of fabric. Et voila!

Redefine “Tuxedo”

If nothing else, “French girl chic” means not being beholden to any traditional fashion rules. So how about we rethink what we mean when we say “tuxedo.” Denim skirts or dresses can be pared back with a perfectly fitted vest or denim jacket for a full jean look that is truly unique and unexpected. Create a look using ba&sh’s iconic Willow Midi Dress (now available in denim) and the Rubene Vest. The juxtaposition of lady-like ruffles on the dress and the punk-rock edge of the vest will have everyone’s heads turning.

Use Accessories

Canadian Tuxedos become even easier to wear when they’re done in jumpsuit form. Just ask our Quincy or denim Frida Jumpsuit: equal parts casual and trendy. The key to embracing the jumpsuit? Accessories, accessories, accessoires. Pick up the brass seen in the built-in belt by layering similarly colored gold jewelry and accentuating the jumpsuit’s v-neck.

Remember the rainbow

Crosby and Spears may have brought us traditional blue denim, but it’s 2022, and we’re in full support of utilizing the entire rainbow when it comes to creating a denim-on-denim look. Don’t be afraid to mix different colors or washes to create a multidimensional look. Not feeling the blue? Look no further than our Mame Jeans (perfect if you’re looking for a boyfriend jean option) Elton Jeans (an ideal mom jean fit) or Apolo Jeans (high-waisted jeans of your dreams), which embrace color ranges from white to gray to black.