I avoided Levi's for a long time, but I've gradually come back around and currently have three pairs. I've found that I have a slight preference for the traditional straight-fit, zip-fly 505 over the button-fly 501. In my size the leg openings are very similar, but the 505 has a slightly higher rise in the back, which is more comfortable when sitting and bending over.
Recently I was ordering a few items of basic furnishings (socks, underwear) from JCPenney, and decided to get another pair of 505s. Jean prices have gone up over the past year of so due to higher cotton costs, so Levi's don't go on sale as often as they used to, meaning it was just as easy to include them in this order as to get them from somewhere else for the same price (I've ordered the last couple pairs from Zappos). Also, I liked that JCPenney did not back down when confronted with that hate-filled business a few weeks back regarding the choice of Ellen DeGeneres as their new spokesperson. Vote with your wallet, right?
A decade or so ago, Levi's changed the shape of the arcuate (that's their word for the curved stitching on the back pockets of their jeans), making the center deeper and, to my eyes, ruining it. It was one of the things that soured me on them temporarily. When these new jeans arrived, I was very surprised and pleased to find that the arcuate was shallower, much more like the way it used to be.
I have no way of knowing if this is a permanent change, or only something temporary, or some sort of accident or fluke. Since I didn't go to a store to get the jeans, I didn't have the benefit of seeing lots of other pairs around, nor could I find any specific evidence of a change anywhere online; on the Levi's website and others, the only arcuate I saw is the deeper version, though it's also possible that sites don't know that a change is being implemented and are still using older images.
You know, I may be overthinking this...
My first instinct was to order another pair right away, but that wouldn't be the most economical reaction. I'm considering attempting to contact Levi's PR to see if I can get some sort of official comment.