Jeansmakers have some catching up to do.


Hit about as hard as any apparel category by last year’s upswing in cotton prices and further hampered as dressier classifications such as dresses and men’s tailored clothing seized the style spotlight, sales of women’s and men’s jeans declined on both a unit and dollar basis in 2011, after a unit decline and small dollar pickup in 2010. Last year, it was women’s jeans that saw the biggest drop-offs, with dollars down 3.3 percent to $7.79 billion and units down 6.7 percent to 311.7 million, according to The NPD Group’s analysis of retail figures for the year.

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