I should have known that it wasn't the best or most efficient way to approach shopping for jeans, but I ordered a few pairs to try on earlier this month during the last big Bloomingdales sale. My Uniqlo blue jeans are getting extremely worn, and I will replace them later this year. The best ones I tried on were the Rag & Bone "The Skinny" jeans in the Coventry shade, which are quite flattering and fit correctly on my petite-length legs. I ended up sending them back with everything else, however, because the fabric felt thinner and stretchier than I was used to, which made even the sale price feel like too much.
Because I only need one pair of dark blue skinny or straight-leg jeans at a time, the cost per wear should be good enough to justify buying an expensive pair. There is the issue of how I will only be able to wear jeans two days a week because of work, but that likely means that any new pair will have good longevity. (Slimmer cuts of jeans might be on the way out, but I don't really anticipate personally wanting to go back to boot cuts.) Of course, if jeans are going to be such a small part of my future wardrobe, going back to the Uniqlo price point might be the best choice, and I think that's the direction I'm leaning in.
I ended up sending everything back. I just couldn't be sure that the Rag & Bone jeans were actually the most flattering style for me, given that I hadn't done my shopping in person. Especially because I have to be selective on what I splurge on for my wardrobe, I think I've more or less decided that premium jeans will not be one of those things.