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Journal de NĂŽmes NÂş 5 the British issue july 2010 the printed paper for A Denim inspired boutique www.tenuedenimes.com -

in this issue:

Nigel Cabourn Reinventing History p4

10 Questions Miles Johnson p 16

Mary Quant

and then there was shopping p 20

Grenson Factory visit p 26

Gloverall

the History of the Duffle Coat p 14

London

The city map by Luis Mendo p 24

Tender

hand crafted denim p 12

British Treasures Our favorites from Blighty p 38


Contributors

Tenue de nîmes

Sasha Naod Storyteller Hailing from Melbourne, Australia, Sasha came to Amsterdam on a whim in 2005, with a two-year plan that kind of hasn’t ended yet. A passionate pop culture vulture, journalist, PR and communicator, he articulates narratives that need to be told for people and brands. His approach centres around the interplay of story, symphony, empathy, play, meaning and design. Sasha currently consults for a range of internationally-minded brands in the lifestyle, technology and design industries, including this here magazine.

Luis Mendo graphic designer / illustrator Born in Salamanca in 1969, Luis has been a graphic designer for 14 years, mainly in The Netherlands. While in Spain, he designed newspapers for Argentina, Uruguay and Greece. In june 2005 he opened his own studio, GOOD Inc.® and was chosen among the "Top 10 best Art Directors in The Netherlands". In march 2009 he took a sabbatical break in Tokyo which changed his view on design and life forever. He writes regularly in blogs and magazines, is part of jury's, teaches editorial design and gives lectures and workshops all over the world.

www.sashanaod.com

www.goodinc.nl

Anneke Beerkens cultural anthropologist Anneke Beerkens (1980) received a degree in Cultural Anthropology (with Honours) from the University of Amsterdam, focusing on Japan, post-modern urban ritual, group formation, style and the body. Anneke works as a junior Iecturer at University of Amsterdam. She gives several lectures (amongst others at FOAM during the Amsterdam Fashion Week, at Wereldmuseum Rotterdam and at fashion academies) and had her own photo exhibition last year, based on her Tokyo fieldwork. Currently she is writing a book about her research in Japan and she will apply for a Ph.D. position based on a proposal featuring fashion and its role in expressing the self in postmodern urban societies.

Mr Pen Illustrator Mr Pen is a dutch illustrator living and working in Amsterdam. A multidisciplinary workaholic with a client list that ranges from the big brands to Russian Esquire and the legendary British cult magazine Dazed and Confused.

— Olivier van der Hagen Copy writer While initially looking to continue his corporate career, Olivier did some soul searching and left the bank he had been working for. During his self-imposed sabbatical, he met his neighbors, Tenue de Nimes and a friendship was quickly struck up as he finally found people who were passionate about their jobs. Before long, he was editing the Journal de Nîmes no 3, 4 and this issue, as well as writing several articles, his own passion. He is now a free lance writer, contributing written pieces to at least one other magazine besides this one at the time of going to press.

elandsgracht 60 1016 TX in Amsterdam the netherlands +31 (0) 20 320 40 12 www.tenuedenimes.com info@tenuedenimes.com

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www.mrpen.nl

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Editor menno van meurs menno@tenuedenimes.com www.tenuedenimes.com www.journaldenimes.com

Hugo Verweij Sound artist Hugo Verweij is a sound artist and electronic music composer, highly inspired by the sounds he finds in the world around him as well as by visual aesthetics. He creates sound and music for contemporary dance, installations, radio, interfaces and motion graphics. In designing new experiences he believes that what we hear is as important as what we see. Hugo is also a lecturer of sound design and music production at the Utrecht School of the Arts. www.hugoverweij.com www.everydaylistening.com — Retna Wooller Copy Writer Retna Wooller has contributed her words to every facet of the fashion world. From the tags that hang from clothes to stories written from the Paris catwalk. Having moved from her native Australia she now resides in Amsterdam, traveling, writing and in constant search of a fashion conscious city that sits on the bay of a good beach. www.retna.com.au

Creative Direction Joachim Baan - Anothercompany joachim@tenuedenimes.com www.anothercompany.org Copy director Olivier van der Hagen Contributing editors Hugo Verweij Luis Mendo Anneke Beerkens Emile Pen Retna Mooller Sasha Naod Joanna van Unen Hiyoko Imai Eric Bernhardsson Timo Demollin Mia Porter Special thanks to Rene Strolenberg Published by Tenue de Nîmes info@tenuedenimes.com Printed Modderman Drukwerk, Amsterdam www.modderman.nl ©2010 www.journaldenimes.com

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JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010


— Celebrating British Mastercrafts — Menno van meurs

The last two Journal de Nîmes editions focused on Japan and France. We had the idea to dedicate an issue of Journal de Nîmes to the UK way back, before we had even published one Journal yet. This then inspired us to focus on a different country or region each issue. You are holding the UK issue in your hands right now. We came across so many great things from the United Kingdom recently, that we could have easily filled 100 pages for this Journal de Nîmes. We have managed to select the stories of England-based brands, concepts and people that all

personify something extraordinary from across the Channel. Whether it is Mary Quant who not only invented the mini skirt but more importantly changed the way we experience shopping in the 21st century, or Nigel Cabourn who takes us back in time by reinventing the most amazing vintage designs and fabrics - it is all rather fascinating. In our search for European craftsmanship we came across Grenson, thanks to our (UK) neighbor Jason Denham. We went to Northamptonshire to pay a visit to their traditional

JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010

factory. Apart from the lovely craft and the great English shoes that we found there, the factory made us sad. The visit learned us that these special factories are slowly becoming a thing of the past. No one seems to be able to find young people who want to invest in learning all about the old-fashioned shoe industry, nor will they spend days working on the same square meter day in and day out. They do not seem to recognize the beauty of each stage that a pair of shoes must undergo before it is boxed and sent to a store somewhere in the

world. But can we blame them? It is hard to say. But what we can do is keep paying attention to the English fashion industry in order to highlight and celebrate some of its impressive history and present. This Journal is another tribute to European craftsmanship and England has become the metaphor to endorse it. The one and only country where people wait in structured lines at bus stops or on the escalator, where they drink milk in their tea and where pro's play tennis in white because it is stated

in the Wimbledon statutes since the 19th century. Making this issue was just so much fun, and many great British topics did not make this issue because of a lack of space, so we can not rule out the possibility of another UK issue in the near future. Until soon. —

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Nigel Cabourn Text: Menno van Meurs & Olivier van der Hagen — photography: Joachim Baan & Timo Demollin

Nigel Cabourn is a niche menswear brand manufactured in England and Japan. The company actively searches for original British fabrics and components like Harris Tweed and Cotton Ventile. All Cabourn's designs can be traced back to the Royal British army. Most of his inspiration comes from vintage styles from the period between the 1920's and the 1950's as worn by famous explorers such as Sir Edmund Hillary: the first man to scale the Mount Everest. All the garments from the Nigel Cabourn collection have stories to tell. Whether it is a clip button that unveils the story of a mountain expedition jacket because it could be opened without taking off ones gloves, or the sheep skin lining of a WWI leather pilot jacket, all Nigel's outerwear products are unique.  Having attended Newcastle Upon Tyne Fashion College in northern England from 1967 until 1971, Nigel Cabourn did not see the need to move south. Instead, and as the stories have it against all advice, he chose to stay up north, where he focused on outerwear garments and gradually began to make a name for himself in the industry. As he himself says: “I've supported myself, and been in this business, since I was twenty years old. That's 40 years this year that I've been employed in this line of work. That's a f***ing long time. How many people can say they've worked in fashion for 40 years and still have a role to play? There will be a few, but I'm sure this is fairly unique.” Spoken in such a matter of fact voice, without even the slightest trace of arrogance, there is no disagreeing with this. In fact, we could go one further and ask how many people in the fashion and design industry have lasted this 4

long while not once compromising his or her vision, taste and ideas by surfing on the latest wave of trends imposed on us by shrewd marketing campaigns?

In the spotlight: Nigel Cabourn in his studio

“I am not looking to reinvent anything, to simply reproduce garments. A lot of designers are inspired by vintage but what you want to do is contemporize the items. A contemporary fit on a vintage item achieves a very modern look – because a pure vintage item never quite fits, generally.” He goes on to say that Japan and America are probably the two best places in the world to collect vintage garments. “If it sounds odd that Japan has so much vintage items, they just truly love things with heritage, which also probably explains my success over there. And Japan is a better place to find WWI and WWII items than Europe. All of the good vintage has filtered from America and Europe to Japan, because they were willing to pay top dollar for these." An avid fan of vintage garments, Nigel Cabourn has collected 4,000 pieces (including salvaged British Military uniforms and work wear) over the course of 30 years. It all started when one very well known designer introduced him to the delights of all things vintage...“Yes, well that came a little after I'd started my business", he says. “Paul Smith was working for me at the time he was my selling agent in fact, between 1972 and 1974. My company was (and still is, ed.) based in the North East of England and Paul came to visit and said 'you know, I could really sell your clothes down in London.' So he became my agent, selling my products in London.”  We are listening to the recording of Nigel Cabourn regaling his interviewers with JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010


Above: the original Camo Parka. Right: an artist's impression of the submarine. Both formed Nigel's main source of inspiration for his new collection. Drew is wearing the camo parka by Nigel Cabourn.

this, and we can almost hear their jaws drop as he continues: “We became very good friends over the course of the 1970's and then, in 1979, Paul got his start, we were both showing in Paris, and he comes up to me and says: 'Nigel, I've a jacket I want to show you.' He had brought a vintage jacket to my stand and asked me my opinion. I didn't know about vintage back then, mind you. Sometimes it takes a few years to learn, to catch on, and then your life changes, doesn't it?” He goes on to say that it was around the time of that Paris show that Paul Smith was starting to get inspired by older, worn things himself – Nigel Cabourn on the other hand, by his own admission, was trying to reinvent himself all the time. As Mr. Smith showed him the jacket, Mr. Cabourn instantly falls in love with it, and gets given the jacket as a present as well as a gentle nudge from Paul Smith to perhaps 'do something like that jacket.' “It is from that moment I started collecting vintage, Nigel concludes. “I've been collecting vintage for 30 years now, and that was the beginning of my story of vintage. Paul's probably forgotten,” he says, laughing. “I haven't, because for me it gave me a story of inspiration – which I didn't have until '79.” It is this treasure of 4,000 pieces (and counting) that every collection is inspired and based on. “In the last 10 years I have found some amazing things but it's getting harder and harder to find truly great pieces.” 4,000 garments is a huge number... how do you store all that? “Well, we stack it all up in piles on shelves in big cupboards. The problem I have now is space. I need to figure out where to stock anything that comes in now. I  have a beautiful garage on JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010

my property, but need to think about it..A museum? I suppose so, yes, but I'd probably need to f***ng go in there as well!”  This Fall and Winter Nigel Cabourn takes an in-depth look at original foulweather clothing as worn at sea. Fabrics like traditional fisherman's handknitted gainsays and oil-proofed cotton refer to the Navy sailors and life-boat men facing unrelenting weather conditions like North Sea storms during their trips. Clothing was simply made to provide protection from the wet and cold. Life on the sea was rough and clothes were designed to let the one wearing them perform well.  Mr. Cabourn tells us that he designs his own fabrics as well as buttons and zips, and so on. There are however products that he gets from elsewhere – like bee's wax. “Everything I do I spend a lot of time and effort on, no matter how small the detail, so each item is quite special. Certain things I will develop myself, but bee's wax (which he uses on shirts to add a unique twist- ed.) I get from Scotland.” He uses it because it is a friendly material, as opposed to oil cloth. “Plus the texture is just completely different,” he adds.  On a related note we talk about the time before modern synthetics and waterproof fabrics were available. Fabrics that were basically made to resist the elements. Every detail of a piece of clothing matters and all of them complement, and contribute to, the garment as a whole. Cotton soaked in beeswax becomes water resistant. Chunky wooden toggles on a duffel coat make sure the duffel coat would be close around the body. An eye for detail: That is what Nigel Cabourn is all about.  — 5


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JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010


Tip of the iceberg: the new collection on show.

JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010

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"Paul Smith was working for me at the time he was my selling agent in fact,between 1972 and 1974." 窶年igel Cabourn

Treasure chest of inspiration: Nigel's personal archive with hundreds of vintage pieces and the book and magazine collection representing all the themes of the former collections (mountaineering, the British Army to name two).

For more images check: www.tinyurl.com/nigelcabourn


Icons of Britain Text: Retna Wooller — Illustration: Joachim Baan

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The Mini - Due to the 1956 petrol rationing brought about by the Suez Crisis, the British Motor Corporation asked Sir Alec Issigonis to design a cost effective car modelled somewhat on the Volkswagen. With a front-end drive, more room for passengers and luggage and rubber cone suspension, the Mini was born - saving sales in the motor industry and gas for the consumer. Even more typically British were the storage pockets in the hollow doors, sized specifically to fit a bottle of Gordon’s Gin.

Gordon’s Gin – Developed in 1769 by Scotsman Alexander Gordon, the gin’s recipe, which contains juniper berries and rare botanicals, is known to only 12 people in the entire world. A global trend began when one day, Gordon’s was mixed with tonic, and became the world’s first ever cocktail.

JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010


Robert’s Radios – During the heyday of Britain’s broadcast receiver industry, Harry Roberts began a family run business that produced one of the world’s most iconic transistors – the Revival Radio. Working to a budget, Robert’s Radios couldn’t afford conventional advertising instead choosing to create attention-grabbing designs. Think solid gold radio cases, or colourful leather bound cases sold as limited additions in the exclusive Harrods department store. Robert’s Radios soon became a household classic – even the Queen bought one.

Paddington Bear – A cameraman for the BBC, Michael Bond felt sorry for a lonely bear left on the shelf of a toy store Christmas Eve 1956, and brought it home to his wife Brenda. They named it Paddington, after the station they lived by in London. As a bit of fun, Michael began to write stories about Paddington, who wore a Duffle coat and floppy hat, had a love of Marmalade and tended to get into mischief. His first book, A Bear Called Paddington, was published in 1958. Since then, Michael’s books have been translated into 40 languages and sold 35 million copies worldwide.

JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010

Filofax – It was during WWI that an American-based Englishman spied an organising system with pullout technical leaves and brought the idea back to his native country. In 1930, the London mail-order business registered the name Filofax, derived from the description “file of facts”. The leather or canvas bound diaries have since gone on to become a compulsory purchase for the British Army College Staff and a status symbol for the upwardly mobile single set of the 80’s – way before electronic organisers were even in its first draft stages of conception.

The Trench Coat – Although the first trench was said to be designed by Aquascutum in the 1850’s, it was Thomas Burberry’s invention, the gabardine fabric, that took the trench coat to new levels of distinction. As an optional item of dress for the British Army, it was not until WWI the coat was modified to include shoulder straps to display an officers ranking and D-rings added for the attachment of hand grenades. Linked with officers who fought war in the trenches, the style became assimilated with all that was romantic and heroic about war. It was not long before the Trench Coat became a staple item of outerwear for actors, authors, statesmen and private investigators.

The Tube – The London Underground became known as ‘the Tube’ for the circular appearance of its tunnels around London. Opened in 1863 it is the first underground railway system in the world and remains the second longest with over 400 km of track. The font, tube map and logo of the London Underground have all become design icons in their own right and are used in merchandise and tourist memorabilia of all kinds. The Tube Map itself created in 1931 by Harry Beck is a design classic and inspiration for many of the underground maps for cities around the world. —

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JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010


Tender Text: Hugo Verweij— photography: Tender

What to do if your passion for denim knows no bounds? Right: you go out and create your own, perfect pair of jeans. And when you like the result, you start your own label. That is exactly what William Kroll did with his new denim label Tender: create top quality hand crafted denim goods inspired by his passion for the workwear of the Great British Steam Age. William developed his passion for creating when he was a teenager. He made his own furniture, printed his own black and white photographs and eventually sewed his own first pair of trousers on his mother’s old sewing machine, at night, after finishing his homework. A local shop owner taught him the basics about denim, and William saved up ten weeks of hard earned money to buy his first precious pair of Evisu jeans. He applied for the Menswear BA at Central St Martins, London, and worked Saturdays in tailor shops all through college. After his graduation and a year of work in an Evisu flagship store, William was asked to work for the brand in Hong Kong and London, eventually becoming the designer for their Deluxe and Heritage collections. It was his desire to get back into the real craft of making things, without all the compromises that come with designing for a relatively big brand, that made him resign after three years to start his own label. Tender was born. The tender of a steam train is the truck carrying coal and water for the locomotive. Connecting the engine with the carriages, the tender has to be incredibly strong and hold enough fuel to bring the train and its passengers to the other side of the country. When you encounter a piece of Tender denim in person, you will understand the resemblance. The fabric is tough, and feels strong enough to last for years, even if it is your job to scoop coal into a locomotive’s firebox all day long. The logo image of a booted elephant and the expressionless face on the brass buttons both come from a source book of Williams grandfather, who worked for magazines and used these generic graphics which could be filled with a customer’s text. Tender wear is handmade entirely in England. Ordering a high quality piece of unsanforized 16oz Japanese denim and creating your own patterns is one thing, but William has his own unique vision on every single detail of his

JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010

garments: from the first cuts done by a couple of specialist tailors in Leicester, to the placing of the washing tab, visible on the outside of the garment. There seems to be an idea and story behind every single detail. While nowadays almost every piece of denim is dyed in synthetic indigo, Tender garments are hand-dipped in a bath of natural indigo twice after they have been put together, which deeply enriches the color of the outside of the cloth and creates a lighter, vibrant blue on the inside, where the weft of the cloth usually stays white. After the dyeing process they are washed with vinegar to set the dye. It takes one day to dye a piece like this, but it results in an extraordinary palette of colors. William spent two months in Kojima, Japan, to study hand-dyeing with indigo master Hasuoka Yoshiaki. A great example of the effort this man puts into his pursuit of perfection. Besides natural indigo from El Salvador, Tender uses woad for dyeing. Woad is a plant which has been cultivated in Western Europe and is used as a source of indigo dye for various purposes, including inkjet printing. Next to the signature denim jeans and jackets, Tender’s collection contains leather belts and T-shirts. All products are made with the same care and craftsmanship. The belts, hand-cut from thick, traditionally tanned oak bark leather, look strong enough to pull a steam train’s tender by themselves, and so do the brass belt buckles. The illustrated T-shirts are made in collaboration with artist and designer Dorrit Dekk, born in Brno, Czechoslovakia in 1917. Her drawings are made with bamboo pen and ink, and colored in with watercolor afterwards. Even Tender’s buttons and buckles are handmade, cast in solid brass in Devon, and are testimony to William Kroll's attention to every detail. There is a handy little pocket for a pencil on the side of the jeans, and the inside pocket of the jacket is made in such a way that your belongings will not fall out when you bend over. And there is a lot more to discover. To do so I encourage you to drop by Tenue de Nîmes and touch and experience the garments yourself, as that is the only way to really get to know their handmade quality. —

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JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010


History of the Duffle Coat Text: Retna Wooller — photography: Gloverall

The Duffle has survived two World Wars, is the only classic overcoat to carry a hood and is favoured by the likes of Dudley Moore and Paddington Bear. Such a rich and full history sits within the four wooden toggles of a Gloverall Duffle Coat. Every Duffle coat is made from original duffel, a thick woollen material tightly woven for warmth and derived from the town Duffel in the Belgian province of Brabant. A woolly tartan lining conceals all seam and hemlines and four front horn toggles fasten with the help of rope or leather loops. It is said that the toggles are easier to do up while wearing gloves, but this is quite often not the case. The coat’s outer pockets are large and square and sometimes concealed with a top flap. A hood often sits wide on the shoulder and is large enough to go over a beret or flat cap. The first Duffle sighting was in 1890 when a British man called John Partridge began to use the dense fabric to make a boxy overcoat. However it wasn’t until the Second World war that the Duffle gained cult status when a camel

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coloured version could not be removed from the back of Field Viscount Montgomery. He wore the coat almost around the clock and the Duffle soon became known as ‘the Monty’ and was recognized the world over. In 1951 the Ministry of Defence offered a surplus supply of the coats to Harold and Freda Morris who were known to trade in specialty cotton, leather, gloves and overalls. They bought the supply and named their company Gloverall. Before long, Gloverall started making the coats themselves in a factory close to St Paul’s Cathedral in London. Across Britain and France, the Duffle became a style staple for high school students and college intellectuals providing swift protection against the harsh elements. It was during the 50’s and 60’s when political activism was closely assimilated with a style of dress. Left wing supporters often wore a Duffle coat while sitting in speakeasy’s and open-mic nights and the coat’s alliance with the cool British youth was etched into the minds of generations to come. —

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10 Questions to Miles Johnson

text: menno van meurs photography: joachim baan

1. Would you please introduce yourself, and tell us all about your background? Blue is my favorite color and I like cats and dogs (Laughing loudly). My name is Miles Johnson and I work for a Levi's division called Premium XX. Before I started at Levi's I worked in the film industry for six years. I worked on costumes for feature films and it was my job to break down period costumes to make them believable, to make them look the age they were supposed to be. If the character was wearing a suit from the Victorian period it had to look believable. I got really into that using stuff like banana skins to get natural, greasy shines on the insides of colors. I was burning stuff and throwing cups of tea and coffee over garments and learned about chemical treatment and the laundering of fabrics. Like: "What would happen if we turned this garment inside out and sprayed it irregularly with black pigment and then hit it with hammers while it is still wet and dried at a really high temperature, throw it in a tumble dryer with old shoes…. What would that look like?" It was a fascinating time doing all the research and the design, but as soon as the filming started my work would become quite tedious. I wanted to learn more about fashion, about actually making the clothes. I decided I wanted to learn more about fashion and clothing, so I went to Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design to do a masters in menswear. 2. You rate as a bit of a mystery in the business. What is it that you actually do for Levi's XX and how did you end up working there? All the things about making clothes 'old', that I got interested by during my time in the Film Industry, seemed to come together in vintage jeans. From that moment I knew I wanted to work for Levi's. So I called them.. and then called them again and again and just before I finished at St. Martens I managed to get an interview with the Creative Director. We talked about safety pins for 2 hours - I absolutely love safety pins, and so did she. At the end of the conversation she said: "When are you going start?" To which I replied: "But you did not even offer me a job and did not take one look in my book"? So she flipped through it and said: "See you on Monday then". And that was it. At the moment I am head of design for Levi's Vintage Clothing. I design the shop interiors of our LVC stores, I create window designs, search for relics to use in our showrooms and I do a lot of research for my work in design. There is a lot of science going on in what I do. It's all about matching the original quality of denim. Every tiny little detail should be perfect. Every single rivet needs to get the right depth and the look and feel of the fabric should perfectly match the vintage Levi's pieces from our archives. 16

3. The first time you set foot in the Tenue de Nîmes store, you took one look at this dirty, old, worn in, torn apart and smelly pair of jeans and the only thing you said was: "Lovely". Not exactly what I expected you to say. Where does your love for denim come from? Was it my jeans or yours? (laughs) I can't remember. But I do love it you know. I can't really recall when it was that I discovered denim - it somehow landed in my lap. I started to work with denim while I was in college and my final collection was denim. I learned that denim is a lovely, evolving fabric. A lot of people do not really analyze it very much. I believe there is a whole emotional side to denim. I know it may sound a bit pretentious but it is like that when someone takes a bath wearing a pair of rigid denim jeans for the ultimate fit, squeezes out the water, dries them in the sun and wears them non-stop without washing them. Observing the wear and the fading and the shaping and all those other things will make anyone love a pair of jeans more than they ever did. And of course when you do this to more than one pair you will have several loves, but that's why I have 68 pairs of jeans that I wear, all of them, depending on what mood I am in. And If I don't know what mood I am in I'll wear a whole set of jeans in one day. If you look at jeans they have hardly changed over the course of all those years. It basically just gained one extra pocket and there were some minor style changes like the fabric and little details around the top like cinch-backs and zip fly's or button fly's but essentially it did not change at all. That is amazing. On top of that the most remarkable thing about jeans is that such a great number of people own at least one pair. 4. You said you wear 68 pairs of jeans constantly but would you be able to pick a favorite? Well I believe that is like asking a mother which of her children is her favorite. But yes, I do. My favorite pair, at the moment, is a pair of 1955 501's that were worn originally by a guy who used to work in a plastic factory and they have been so baked and heavily worn and been stained by bits of spitting melted plastic. 5. What kind of environment were you brought up in? I come from The Midlands, from a small village near Wolverhampton. It was a very close-knit community and I could not wait to get away. After university I went to London, which I loved instantly. It has an edge to it that I find really healthy. It throws a lot of good stuff out. I mean there is poverty and that brings out the best in people. God, I haven been poor in London. The things JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010


I could do with a potato... Jesus. We used to spend more money on feeding our cats than on feeding ourselves. All that time as a student I was scraping. But I feel that is a really good character start. London has an amazing art scene, it does great things in music. It has weird fashion though, I believe they have this weird direction but they still throw out some great talent and St. Martens is absolutely great mostly because of Louise Wilson, who is the course director. I think she is a professor in fashion now. She is the head of the fashion army. They strip you down, and then rebuild you again from scratch. It was a tough education. Maybe that's why I don't mind hard work now, because I was used to it back then 6. What is your favorite retail stop in London? I love Dover Street Market. It is quite 'gallery' but its great. I believe it's because of Comme des Garçons, she is amazing. She has such a great eye for unusual pieces. So maybe I like intelligent fashion after all. It's all about clothes at the end of the day. I don't buy much there, but I like the shop. If I am going to buy clothes I save my money and buy stuff in Japan or the Rose Bowl in the USA or Spitalfield Market and Brick lane in London. But you have to understand I can not stand to wear a pair of jeans from another brand. I do have great jeans from Wrangler and Lee but I just don't wear them. I do love to buy accessories from brands like RRL by Ralph Lauren. 7. Can you tell us where you get your inspiration from in terms of designs? The starting point for everything I do is the Levi's archive and of course I rely on my taste appealing to a massive amount of consumers in different parts of the world. We literally take apart our jeans from the past in order to interpret all the ingredients. We never look at denim from a fashion perspective. I can get pretty mad when people are so obsessed with how great someone's behind will look and not spare a single thought for the quality, the craftsmanship or the way it is constructed with the rivets and the stitching. I have a very naive and simple way of talking about the most fundamental piece of our wardrobe. It all started here (Levi's ed.) and that is where all the knowledge and inspiration comes from. I am so fascinated by all the stories from our archives. The people behind the jeans and stuff they went through while wearing one. You can actually determine what kind of life someone had when you look at their jeans. About what kind of shoes they wore, if they rode horses, whether they worked. There are tell tale signs on the worn jeans that tell you all you need to know. Specific fades, rips, etc. Like lines on an old man's face. People wore their jeans for a lifetime you see. It was a huge JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010

investment in the early days. Jeans were crazy expensive – along the lines of a month's pay, but it was a good investment because it would last a lifetime. It's just a shame that so many people threw them away. 8. Please describe a day in the life of Miles Johnson. Well what I like abut what I do is that every day is so full of surprises. I feel tested constantly. And of course everyone learns how to juggle with one ball to begin with and eventually you join the circus throwing 9 balls into the air. I just love it so much, that it is fine. And there is so much good support in our team. We have a great working relationship where we test and challenge each other constantly. We argue like cat and dog but when we are finished we get to a better place together. I feel lucky to be doing what I'm doing and I'm quite driven about it because I find it rather interesting. So whether I am doing research, designing a collection or determining what our Tokyo based brand store should look like - it's all fun you know. 9. You travel a lot for your job at Levi's XX. You visit countries like the US, Italy, Japan and Turkey on a regular basis. Is it tough for you to never actually be relaxing? You can quote me on this: I can sleep when I die. Honestly I do not have any time for it. I can find it quite difficult to switch off. I used to be very worried that I was lazy. My mother used to say that to me: "Oh get out of bed you're so lazy". And so when I got to University I printed out a poster and hung it above my bed which said: "I'll Sleep when I die". And when I would wake up in the morning it would be the first thing I would see and I would jump out of bed: Get up! Get on! Make things happen. Remember that.

For more images check: www.tinyurl.com/milesjohnson

10. You live in Amsterdam, yet have retained your house back in the UK why is that? Well in the end of course I will be going back to England and be an old man in my house on top of a hill. It's home and I love it and that's why I keep it. But at the moment it just drives me crazy. I've got a bit of a split personality I guess. I need both. Muddy fields and long walks with my dog. It's my escape. —

'Observing the wear and the fading and the shaping and all those other things will make anyone love a pair of jeans...' 17


— UNKNOWN PLEASURES / MOVEMENT —

Text: hugo verweij Photography: Joachim Baan

Let’s go back thirty years, to the time when the members of Joy Division and later New Order packed together all their passion for gloomy, distorted sounds and released their debut albums, not knowing the impact they would have on the evolution of popular music. Do you know the feeling of finding that pair of jeans that fits you perfectly, and not wanting to take them off anymore? In the beginning the raw denim feels a bit rough and uncomfortable, but each day you wear it, it gets to know the movements of your body a little better, until it fits you like a glove. Something similar happens when you find a piece of music that ‘fits’ you well. You play it again and again, and after a week it has become part of your world, it feels like you have known it for years. Although what works for me might not work for you, there are some artists who manage to find their way into the hearts of a large group of people, thus inspiring many other artists, influencing the history of modern music and even giving rise to completely new genres. During the last decades England was the source of many of those artists, from the Beatles to Queen to Radiohead, to name a few. And I did not even mention Brit-pop. Or the Prodigy. Looking at the rise of electronic dance music in all its forms, England is the birthplace of the breakbeat-oriented drum ‘n bass, garage and more recently dubstep, all seeding many sub-genres. It is amazing to see how artists keep experimenting and organizing sounds in new ways, searching for new grooves, new melodies. Today, the technology needed to record and produce a record fits on single laptop computer. After many years of exploring musical possibilities however, creating something unique and inspiriting has not become any easier. Even though I have all the technology available, from a twenty-first century perspective I almost envy the musicians of the past for still having so many sonic boundaries to explore. Even so, what music would I make? What would influence and inspire me, what would I want to tell the world? Listening to the first albums of Joy Division and New order I try to imagine the context in which they were created, and within the framework of the sounds of today, I listen to these two influential English band from the past. 18

JOY DIVISION - UNKNOWN PLEASURES With ears ringing from the first wave of punk during the 70's, England was ready for something new towards the end of the decade. There was room for a subdued version of the punk rock sound, focusing less on simplicity, speed and rebellion. Joy Division’s debut album Unknown Pleasures, released in June 1979, is a classic example of this post-punk sound. The opening track Disorder starts off with a characteristic, tight drum beat, which does not change throughout the track, apart from a few fast breaks. The guitar plays its distorted tones as the low voice of Ian Curtis calmly tells us his monotonous stories until, towards the end, he raises his voice to finish the song with an exclamation mark. The slow intro of Day Of The Lord prepares me for what appears to be my favorite track on Unknown Pleasures. Only after the first “Where will it end?” of the chorus the band is up to speed. The right balance between all instruments and the effective addition of synthesizer tones and effects make the sound of this song warm and sweet, which is in turn pierced by the vocals. Its slow pace and Curtis’s solemn voice remind me of the earlier work of Type O Negative, which was undoubtedly inspired by Joy Division. Between the rest of the album, continuing in the same atmosphere of the first two songs with repetitive drums, firm bass lines and the at times slightly out of tune, melancholic vocals, we find the characteristic She’s Lost Control, with its mechanical rhythms, unstoppable like a steam train while the vocals, angry and dark, are echoing out of control. The production of Unknown Pleasures was in the hands of Martin Hannett, who loved to use technology to experiment with sound. On Candidate we hear a dry snare drum in the center of the mix, echoing only on the left speaker, and on a song like Wilderness Ian Curtis’s voice drowns in reverb, which combined with the metallic, machine-like rhythms makes it sound like he is standing in a huge factory hall. Other than in the punk rock from a band like the Sex Pistols, the structure of Joy Division’s songs leaves some room to breathe. Layers build up and break down, the harsh snare drum ticks on like a very slow clock and the synthesizers add an eerie, but pleasant edge to the sound.

NEW ORDER - MOVEMENT One of the most influential English bands of the 80's came to life at a time of grief: two days before Joy Division was supposed to leave for their first tour in the United States, singer Ian Curtis took his own life on May 18th, 1980. The band had agreed to change its name in case one of the members would leave. So Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook and Stephen Morris decided to carry on under a new name: New Order, with Sumner behind the microphone. The first song the band released commercially was Ceremony, which was written with Curtis during the last few weeks of his life. The same year New Order, still in a confused state of mind, started recording their debut album Movement, which was released in November 1981. At first, the band did their best to carry on in the same tone as Joy Division, while slowly adding more and more synthesizer sounds to the mix, influenced by German electronic music pioneers Kraftwerk. Together with the synths, the smooth guitar loop of the first track Dreams Never End already points to a new musical direction, while the vocals keep their dark and monotonous character. On Truth the electronic drums rattle on while synthesizers and guitars cover them with a thick blanket of shrieking sonic layers. Like many of the songs on the album, I.C.B - rumored to stand for ‘Ian Curtis, Buried’ - is based on a foundation of a steady, pounding drum loop. While the album was produced by the same Martin Hannett who produced Joy Division’s Unknown Pleasures, the band was happy with the songs, but not really with the way they sounded. And I have to agree; while the addition of more synthetic elements add an interesting layer to the songs, it certainly lacks energy. The vocals are so far away it is hard to understand the lyrics. It feels like Bernard Sumner is shy, and embarrassed to take place behind the microphone that belonged to Ian Curtis. Still, it is audible that with Movement New Order sowed the seeds for a prolific career, which would later influence a wide range of rock, pop as well as electronic musicians. —

JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010


1

2

3

4 Illustration: Mia Porter

Well Tied & Folded

1

2

3

4

The Bow-tie

The Pratt-Shelby knot

The Three Stairs Pocket Square

The Winged Puff Pocket Square

1. Hang the untied bow tie around your neck, with the end on your left a little longer than on the right.

1. Hang the loose tie around your neck with the thin, shorter end on your right, and the longer, wider part on your left.

1. Lay the pocket square flat on the table and twist it 45 degrees, then fold bottom half up, to meet the top corner.

1. Lay the pocket square flat on the table and twist it 45 degrees, then fold it in half, horizontally.

2. Loop the longer, wider end back up and over the shorter end, and pull through behind where the two ends initially cross.

2. Fold the front fold down partially so the tip goes past the bottom of the pocket square. Take the same fold and fold it back up towards the top corner, stopping about 2 cm below it. Repeat both steps once more.

2. Move it over the end on your right, fold it around it and pull it up behind the right end. 3. Let the left end slide over the knot forming in the middle and let it hang. 4. Take the same end and bring it up on the left hand side, and pull it through the knot to the right. 5. You should now be able to pull the knot tight and be left with a perfectly tied bow-tie.

3. Pull the wider end to the left and around, loop it behind the shorter end. 4. Pull underneath itself and through the knot and tighten as desired.

3. Twist the pocket square 90 degrees and fold the top half of the pocket square behind the bottom side.

2. Fold the top left corner down and inwards. 3. Fold the top right corner down and inwards. 4. Fold the left, right and bottom corners in again, so it looks like a small envelope. 5. Place in your jacket pocket and you are good to go.

4. Fold both the left and right sides inwards. 5. Place in jacket pocket and you are good to go.

JOURNAL DE NĂŽmes / NÂş 5 the British issue, july 2010

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Mary Quant and then there was shopping Text: Anneke Beerkens — photography: Getty Images & Books

Imagine you are ten years old, living in 1950's London. You are one of many middle class baby boomers growing up in stoic austerity. The deprivations of wartime Britain are still tangible in everyday life. Your frugal mom and dad are working hard and saving even harder to get the latest gadgets of modern life. Everything around you – interiors, public life, dance nights – is neat, ordered and clearly directed. Even fashion. Once in a while, your mom takes you on her shopping trip to one of the city’s department stores. Before leaving the house she inspects your clothes, hands, fingernails and hair. She takes a pair of white gloves out of the closet – waiting there all year long for this special occasion – and orders you to wear them, as well as the little hand bag. There you are, dressed like a mini mum, on your way to the cathedral of modernity, the department store. In fact, all middle class and upper class children at that time were dressed like middle-aged men and women, and department stores had the same grandeur and elegance as churches, municipal town halls and libraries. Holding your mother’s hand you feel quite impressed, if not intimidated, by the sophisticated behavior of female shop assistants wearing black suits, their hair smartly styled. How perfect your life is. Well, at least that is what your parents think. You start to feel rebellious because of the over-directed perfect nature of middle-class life in the fifties. You want to spice things up a little bit, you want color, spontaneity, change; you want your own life! Thank God for Mary Quant.

Facade Of Bazaar Jim Gray Hulton Archive / Getty Images

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JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010


Mary Quant Terry Smith TIME & LIFE Images / Getty Images

Mary Quant Born in London in 1934, Mary Quant studied art teaching at Goldsmiths College where she met her eccentric future husband Alexander Plunket Greene. He used to live in Chelsea, a neighborhood popular among bohemian upper class Londoners, and found himself in the middle of a network of ambitious creatives of which Mary Quant became an enthusiastic member. A coffee bar called Fantasy and a pub named Finch’s became the meeting points of the so called ‘Chelsea Set’, consisting of, as Quant put it, “painters, photographers, architects, writers, socialites, actors, con-men, superior tarts, racing drivers, gamblers and TV producers”. These people rebelled against Britain’s conservative mainstream culture and were at the roots of Chelsea’s transformation into an internationally known Walhalla of youth culture. In 1955 Quant, together with Alexander Plunket Greene and Chelsea Set friend Archie McNair, opened a boutique at Chelsea’s Kings Road named BAZAAR. At that time, King’s Road had absolutely nothing special to offer except for regular drugstores and shops that provided household necessities for its residents. BAZAAR, the name itself already unusually exotic, caused a revolution in the street and eventually in the material and cultural landscape of fashionable London in the swinging sixties. During the sixties, one could no longer imagine the urban landscape without boutiques. They popped up everywhere. Artists and designers – like Mary Quant – were unsatisfied with their limited possibilities in Britain’s rag trade based on mass-

JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010

produced mainstream commercial design. This was for most of them the main incentive to start a little shop and sell their own and maybe some classmates designs. However, these young creatives could not afford property in London’s main shopping districts so one saw boutiques in unusual spaces like ‘off the street’ basements of marginal neighborhoods. Young Londoners knew, once a proper member of one of the youth sub-cultures and hearing the ins and outs through the grapevine, where to find these shops. Born out of financial shortage, the peripheral locations of the boutiques eventually even enlarged their aura of secrecy and their rebellious anti-mainstream character. This development also had its impact on the art of displaying. Because the boutiques were outside the regular shopping areas and cool youngsters would visit them anyway, the need to display out of commercial reasons became less important than the desire to create, to provoke and to shock. Even though the parental generation and upset residents saw it as architectural vandalism, young people found their quest for freedom and independence expressed in these windows. The visual impact of BAZAAR’s window displays was as much of a happening as the rest of the shop and again Quant set a trend eagerly picked up by all the other boutiques. Naked models, cars bursting through the shop’s façade, a beautifully dressed mannequin leading a lobster on a golden chain; windows became pop-art installations, a development that has not lost its strength to this day.

Frustrated by the middle-aged adult-like manufactured fashion she was offered while buying clothes for her shop, Mary Quant started making her own clothes. “Quant chucked lady-like accessories into the dustbin, recognized the irrelevancy of looking like a virgin, took into account that pavements and restaurants were not muddy hunting fields nor parties and dances the antechambers of morgues. Innocent and tough, she attacked the whole rigid structure of the rag trade and won hands down and skirts up”. Skirts up it was! Quant innovated – well, she is one of some who claimed to be the innovator – a skirt shorter than one could have ever imagined. The mini skirt resulted from Quant’s freedom and equality generating ambition: women, just like men, had to be able to run for a bus. Her fashion inventions were both colorful and progressive. Besides the mini skirt Quant designed fashion made of PVC, colourful tights and hot pants. A combination of smart entrepreneurship (her hairstyle, cut by good friend Vidal Sassoon, was part of her conscious marketing strategy), idealism (equality and classless society), creativity and rebellion made Quant the symbol of post-war confidence. Quant was able to fill the gap young people in the second half of the fifties felt - a gap between having a decent income (highest since the Second World War) and only being offered a dull adult wardrobe in even duller department stores. But there was more she offered. BAZAAR, with its atmosphere of hedonism, fun and superficiality, created the niche that young people desired at that time: a place of their own.

21


Breward, C., Gilbert, D., Lister, J. (ed.) Swinging Sixties. V&A Publications, London. 2006: 63

Fogg, M. Boutique. A ‘60s Cultural Phenomenon. Octopus, London. 2003:24

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JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010


Fogg, M. Boutique. A ‘60s Cultural Phenomenon. Octopus, London. 2003:9

Fogg, M. Boutique. A ‘60s Cultural Phenomenon. Octopus, London. 2003:59

Boutique culture Mary Quant’s BAZAAR made some permanent changes in fashion, urban culture and youth culture. Soon after its opening, the shop became the epicenter of young Londoners seeking autonomy. Not just a place where you went to buy clothes, BAZAAR became the place to meet friends and to be seen. Both inside and outside the new boutiques you saw people hanging around chatting, smoking and wanting to be seen. With this, Mary Quant changed the nature of the shopping experience forever. Shopping became a central activity of self-expression and a way to identify oneself with the urban cool. “Local residents stared and pointed as young women catwalked up and down… They wore big floppy hats, skinny ribbed sweaters, key-hole dresses, wide hipster belts and, I believed, paper knickers. They had white lipsticked lips and thick black eyeliner, hair cut in alarming angles, op-art earrings and ankle-length white boots. They wore citron coloured trouser suits and skirts that seemed daily shorter. They rode on miniature motorbikes. They had confidence and, it seemed, no parents”. Indeed, many parents must have been shocked at that time, seeing their children going out in clothes they abominated, hanging around on the streets of lousy neighborhoods.

JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010

Boutique-culture was something totally different from department store shopping. Boutiques were widely accessible and hierarchies between shop owner, shop assistant and client disappeared. In the middle of all the chaos and spontaneity, it was quite common to wonder who was working in the shop and who was just sitting on a chair to visit friends, chatting and laughing. Boutiques made boundaries between work and play and between friends and colleagues disappear. This aspect – as well as the invention of affordable youth fashion – certainly had a democratizing effect on fashion: no matter where you came from, no matter how much money you earned, you were free to take a look and be there. Or were you? Although it certainly was one of Mary Quant’s ideals to democratise fashion (both in the sense of erasing class distinctions and equalizing men and women), BAZAAR was not cheap at all. In addition, the “anything goes” motto of many boutiques, with the quite bored, cocky and arrogant attitude of the way too beautiful owners and staff made many less cool youngsters terrified to enter such a spot. The democratizing ideal eventually had the effect of excluding people as much as it included. However, for about a decade Mary Quant was at the top of London’s fashion scene. She made Chelsea internationally known as a symbol of progressive and creative youth culture and most importantly: Quant was the one who made shopping a lifestyle activity. Thank you for that, Mary! —

Sources Breward, C. Fashioning London: Clothing and the Modern Metropolis. Berg, Oxford, New York. 2004. Breward, C., Gilbert, D., Lister, J. (ed.) Swinging Sixties. V&A Publications, London. 2006. Fogg, M. Boutique. A ‘60s Cultural Phenomenon. Octopus, London. 2003. Maitland, S. (ed.) Very Heaven: Looking Back at the 1960s. Virago, London. 1988. Melly, G. Revolt into Style: The Pop Arts in Britain. Allen Lane, London. 1970. Quant, M. Quant by Quant. Cassell, London. 1966.

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Some City

Britain eats well

Following the Spanish Youth tradition, the first time I travelled abroad without my parents was to London. Boy, did I like the place. With my head full of stories, I was drawn to the mecca of Mod and Punk, both movements I was interested in. Loads of memories of that trip came to mind when I landed in London City Airport some 20 years later. The London of today is much nicer than the old one, and I am glad this time I had a little more money than back then.

Despite the old legend, you can eat very well in London. The British cuisine is also fun and curious to my Latin palate. Some samples:

Drawings and text by Luis Mendo. All the addresses with maps in this report and more info can be found at TheCityReporter.com

With special thanks to Angela Shetler for the proofreading

another Luis Mendo +

Eton Mess NORDIC BAKERY Come and taste the wonders of Scandinavian cakes and the beautiful interiors. The Karelian Pie (made with potato, rice and egg) is a must.

14 Golden Square » nordicbakery.com Fish & Chips (with vinegar)

OLD sPITAlFIELDS MARKET There is something for everyone in this eclectic (covered) market, where you can find good food, clothes, crafts and more.

Old Truman Brewery Once a brewery, now it houses different markets (vintage, food, arts & crafts...) depending on the day you go. Visit the site for details.

94 Commercial St » visitspitalfields.com

91 Brick Lane » trumanbrewery.com

49 Lamb’s Conduit St »

Bacon & beans for breakfast

Haggis

Seasoning present on every restaurant table

FOLK This brand is a bit like Muji (na with a touch of color. Their inte are so nice you wan

EPOC Manga & japanese books Don’t be fooled by the cleaning shop neon. Under it there’s a nice shop serving THE GOLDEN HEART all your Japanese reading needs. You might meet Gilbert & George in this pub, as they live around the cor26 Brewer St ner. If you don’t, the landlady can tell you stories about them as she knows all the artists in the neighbourhood. whole foods And there are loads in Shoreditch. market 110 Commercial St Not as special as before they were bought by the national chain, but still serving good wholesome food for a good price.

ALBAM CLOTHING I was pretty impressed by this simple but powerful brand. They have beautiful clothes and accessories like this triangular coin wallet, all to be found in their Spitalfields shop. 111 Commercial St » albamclothing.com ST John Bread & Wine One of the best places you can eat in Shoreditch. Try to make a reservation beforehand. You can always leave with just-baked bread. 94-96 Commercial Street stjohnrestaurant.co.uk

52 Lamb’s Conduit St » da

69 Brewer St

Persephone This pub titles an the sam tive boo

Twiglets to go with the beer

And lovely cakes from The Hummingbird Bakery (see right)

vintage Mags shop A bit of a deception, but still a good address if you are looking for a copy of the first issue of VOGUE.

39-43 Brewer St » vinmag.com

Beers, clothes & bags

THE THREE THREADS A lovely shop with a very nice selection of goods: stylish streetwear and loads of Carhartt stuff. Originally started by a group of designers, they took the name from a beer that used to be brewed some blocks away, in the 1700s. Now they have that beer made for thirsty customers who are most welcome at their bar-shaped counter. 47-49 Charlotte Road » thethreethreads.com

DARKRO Where the accessorie meet the accessories

present Probably the shop with the best selection we’ve encountered while doing this report. Eddie Prendergast and Steve Davies choose only the clothes they would wear themselves. And what a taste these gents have. They were the first to come to Shoreditch when it was a troublesome area. Now they have a lovely space shared with 2 baristas making the best espresso while you explore the merchandise.

140 Shoreditch High St » present-london.com

Like in the old country, in Soho

CAFE ITALIA Probably the synonym of a tapas bar for Italy, this little cafe will bring you to the Mediterranean country within 1 second of entering the store. 22 Frith St » baritaliasoho.co.uk

5

James Smith & Sons Umbrellas If you are looking for a nice umbrella, stick or cane, this place has been selling them for 175 years. 53 New Oxford St » james-smith.co.uk

Hidden gems in Covent Garden

The Vintage Showroom This is without a doubt the nicest vintage place we’ve seen in London. The owners are the nicest and most stylish guys in the business.

14 Earlham St » thevintageshowroom.com

Go before they are gone

Mighty world of COMICANA If they don’t have the comic you are looking for, they will find it for you. A comic shop as they used to be and will never be again. 237 Shaftesbury Avenue comicana.com

The sartorialist

Oliver Spencer A trés chique place to ge nice outfit from this small located in the nicest stree

62 Lamb’s Conduit oliverspencer.co


Britain reads well

quiz in the pub The new rage amongst pub owners is to organise quizzes where you can win prizes. It makes you stay and keep on drinking and eating. AESOP All the way from Australia comes this brand of high quality products for skin, hair and body. Beautiful aromas in pretty bottles.

+ tenue de Nîmes city report

borough market Easy to reach by tube (London Bridge or Borough), this is London’s nicest quality food market

K atural, simple, functional) erior is lovely and the staff nt to hug them.

» folkclothing.com

OOM es you can wear s in your house.

arkroomlondon.com

ersephone Books blishing house rescues old nd prints them again, all with me jacket but different, decoraokplates.

59 Lamb’s Conduit St persephonebooks.co.uk

ts

pencer et yourself a l British brand et of London.

t Street o.uk

It is remarkable how many people read on London Transport. I could easily pass the boring tube time drawing people as they were absorbed in their reads.

227A Westbourne Grove aesop.net.au

yauatcha Under the viaducts between the river Chinese Chef Alan Yau opened Thames and Borough High Street this gorgeous teahouse and dim boroughmarket.org.uk sum restaurant with 150 varieties of tea as well as 24 varieties of dim sum and a range of delicious pastries and products (with THIS IS LONDON lovely packaging). Yauatcha received a Michelin Sasek was a genius who star rating in 2005, which it has retained ever since. visited many cities and made 15 Broadwick Street » Yauatcha.com books about them. Buy the This is London one for your children or nephews as a souvenir (adults will love it too). DURRANTS HOTEL miroslavsasek.com No doubt this is the place to stay if you like timeless comfort and good service for a good price. Very Agatha GOODFARE CAFE Christie-esque interior, classic in camden as you can have it and next Go not so much for door to the Monocle Shop. I the food, but for the loved it. authenticity of an Italian 26-32 George Street cafe in the middle of Durrantshotel.co.uk Camden. And because it is always better than Sake No Hana Starbucks. Impressive interior, domo oishii 26 Parkway, Camden food. This Japanese restaurant built in what used to be a bank will show you that eating perfect Japanese food outside Japan is possible. Wait for the ladies in kimono the hummingbird to guide you to your table via bakery the escalators. As Marie Claire put it: “It’s bye-bye healthy 23 St. James’s Street eating regime and hello sakenohana.com fluffy sponge topped with buttercream icing and sprinkles.” Too good to be missed. dover street market 133 Portobello Road For Comme des Garçons fans hummingbirdbakery.com there’s this 4-story shop where the BOOKARTbookSHOP you can find the latest from the If you love art or books or both, brand and other creators. this is a must. It’s not only a You can eat upstairs. shop but also the HQ of the 17-18 Dover Street Pataphysics movement. doverstreetmarket.com 17 Pitfield St bookartbookshop.com STORY Deli Pizza Very well made pizzas served on a piece of wood and priced in a simple manner. With a nice terrace to watch the folks visiting the Old Truman Brewery. Loading Bay, Old Truman Brewery storydeli.com

The multimedia brand

MONOCLE SHOP Come and see how they practice what they preach. 2A George Street

The Portobello Market gem

BOOK & COMIC EXCHANGE On the wall: “Dear London Underground worker, stop peeling the stickers off the Sci-Fi books and pretending they are from the basement. You will be banned which will be embarrassing for you. — The Staff” 28 Pembridge Road

arckiv Vintage Eyewear Find the coolest eyewear at this hidden shop in an otherwise not so interesting Stables Market.

Arch 67, the Stables Market Chalk Farm Rd » arckiv.net

CA4LA = “Cashila” (head in Japanese)

CA4LA I missed my chance to get a nice hat when I was in Tokyo, but thanks to the ambitious expansion of Japanese hat brands, I was able to make up for that here. Very near the Bookartbookshop (see above). 23 Pitfield St » ca4la.com

Design by…

LOFT Beautiful interior for this French brand by the Algerianborn Patrick Frèche. The name is an acronym for “Là Où Frèche Travaille” or “there where Frèche works”. 186 Westbourne Grove » loftdesignby.com


Green & Son Text: Menno van Meurs — photography: Joachim Baan

The beauty of European craftsmanship is that every country seems to have its own specialty. England is without a doubt one of the countries that is known for its impressive shoe making history. Legendary gentlemen's stores from all around the country would sell leather shoes that could last a life time. At the end of last year Tenue de Nîmes visited the famous Grenson shoe factory in Rushden, Northamptonshire at about an hour's drive from London.  In 1866 William Green started a shoe company called Green & Son in Rushden Northamptonshire. Green built the factory we visited in November last year in 1895. He died only a decade after in 1905. By the 1930's Green & Son decided that they needed an actual brand name. They shortened Green and Son to Grenson.  The depression made business tough but Grenson managed to penetrate a new market: Army boots. They went to work and designed and created a wide variety of them. One of the most remarkable designs at that time was a special fur lined boot for the pilots with a zip-off leg so if they were shot, they could take off the leg - leaving just a shoe - which made it easier to run.  During the forties a higher demand for traditional 'English' shoes saw the business soar again and the shoes crossed the Atlantic with Savile Row suits. The final member of the Green family, William's great-grandson, sold the business in the 1980's to the Purslow family.  In November 2009 Tenue de Nîmes were invited by Joe Hutchings to get a glimpse of the shoe that we co-created with Grenson. They felt it was necessary for us to actually experience the production process in the old factory. We decided to take the opportunity to make a factory report to share all the unexpected stages our contemporary 'brogue' shoe before it would hit the store in spring.

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Soon after our collaboration we received an e-mail from a gentleman by the name of Tim Little. In the e-mail he thanked us for the inspiring things we had done over the last couple of months, especially with Grenson. His name did not ring a bell so I decided to ask Tim how he came across our company. He turned out to be the Creative Director of the brand and he told me he had recently bought Grenson in order to bring it back to where he thinks it belongs. "The bank warned me about buying a factory, and questioned my mental state..But I couldn't help myself. My first pair of Grenson's were shiny black long wing brogues that we used to call 'Royals'. I was 16 and couldn't afford them". He probably never got rid of that feeling because by the time it was 1997 Little owned his first Kings Road store selling a collection of modern English shoes. It was his contemporary view on the traditional shoe making craft.  Tim used to name the shoes he made for famous feet after Blues songs. "I am a big blues fan and I have always loved the names of the songs. 'Whisky and Women', 'Eyesight to the Blind', 'Love in Vain'. Most shoe companies give them boring names but I wanted to give them a little romance. I sent a pair of Whisky and Women's to John Lee Hooker once and he saw they were named after one of his songs which made him laugh. This is my favorite moment in shoes. The only shoe that was not named after a song was the kangaroo which I designed with Terence Conran." Before Grenson asked Tim to revitalize Grenson he collaborated with and designed for brands like Tods, Rag and Bone, Albam and Dunhill. His shoes were sold all over the globe and many famous feet were adorned with them. Yet Tim Little followed his heart and decided to be faithful to his one and only 'Royal' dream. —

For more images check: www.tinyurl.com/grenson For the video report check: www.tinyurl.com/grensonvideo

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Relational Luxury

Column By Erik Bernhardsson At Repeat to Fade.

The whole foundation of a brand is the ability to tell a story. But how many of the big luxury brands of today have a story that engages and, yes, even excites you? Louis Vuitton might have a heritage, but the real story behind their name is  centered around their balance sheet. Because that is their reason for being – to create a return on someone’s investment in the brand. A brand is usually identified by its logo. But it's nothing more than the visual marker that the product is made by this anonymous corporation and not the other. The original intent of providing a first-rate product and a first-rate experience for the consumer has been replaced by the intention of looking after the company itself and its interests first and foremost. When the purpose-driven organization was overtaken by one driven by other values, the ability to tell a story disappeared with it. That is why the brandbuilding of the last few decades is much like celebrity culture. It’s the cult of the designer and often the joining of brands and celebrities in collaborations to create an identity of a higher being. It’s empty, untrue, shallow, boring and thankfully a thing of the past. Relational luxury is the luxury of knowing the people behind the goods on at least some level. They are not a squadron of faceless workers in a gigantic factory but charming people with names. Perhaps the latter is the most important. Because even if some items today are made artisanally, they are usually made anonymously. The best example of a relational brand might be the Japanese micro-brand Ooe Yofukuten & Co. Their way of combining craftsmanship with personality is making idolizers of the past fall madly in love with them since 2007. Yofukuten is Japanese for ‘Western-style clothes’ and Ooe is the family name of the only two people behind the brand; the married couple Ryo and Hiro. Together they make some of the world’s best reproductional jeans. Through their blog Ooe communicate everything about what they do, from the first prototype in 2007 that honestly did not look that good, to their plans for extending their small line, as well as alterations and improvements to existing garments. It is because they never pretend to be infallible and because they tell us who they are and what makes them go on doing what they do that we grew so fond of them. Ooe Yofukuten & Co. is one of the smallest denim labels in the world. But for those who know them, it’s the most powerful brand in the world. So what does this mean for established brands of the 20th century? It means that they have to do some major soul searching to find out who they really are and what they want to stand for. Those who do not will inevitably fall by the wayside. And perhaps we will be better off without them. Want to learn more about Ooe Yofukuten & Co.? Then make sure not to miss the denim-themed documentary Jeans, a faded blue planet that is soon to come out. —

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Yarn Unit “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” — L. Da Vinci

Composition: 100% Australian superfine wool felted and natureal dyed in vegetal indigo

At Dutch label Yarn Unit it is all about the core of premium knitwear: the yarn. The interlocked fibers are the most fundamental ingredient of any well made piece of knitwear. Yarn Unit made the yarn its personal icon. The brand emphasizes the unique character of handmade products to show the pure beauty of raw materials. We fell in love with this Dutch brand not only because this assumption is fundamental to our Tenue de Nîmes store too, but even more so because every female garment is produced in a way that only embraces the extraordinary. Wether it is silk, cotton, superfine wool, cashmere or a mix from all three - Yarn Unit naturally selects the best yarn available. No wonder that this lovely label will start producing menswear after numerous winners in their women's collections.

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photography: Joachim Baan Models: Rene Strolenberg & Mia Porter

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Be open Be proud Have strength Be bold Take action Have faith Be passionate Have fun

Royal Republiq

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The Life and Times of a Buddhist Punk Text & Images By Sasha Naod

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— “It’s about learning to sit with the pain, and transforming it into compassion and kindness.” —

If you read the words ‘Buddhist punk’ in the title of this article and you are expecting a story on that celebrityobsessed, sometime-hip early noughties fashion brand of the same name, then you may want to turn the page. This story could not be further from the worlds of celebrity and fashion. Although, with a curious irony that lies anywhere you look hard enough, the story could be interesting to anyone inhabiting those worlds. Confused yet? Then read on. Like fashion and celebrity (once you get behind the smoke and mirrors), this is a story about what seems and what is, of illusions and realities. And it concerns a man by the name of Noah Levine. To the passing stranger, Noah reads like a character from Sin City – a skinhead sporting tatts and a black graffiti tee, even the requisite intense demeanor lurks. I’m guessing that most people just look at the ground and scuttle by. Yet we are scheduled for a breakfast meeting in downtown Amsterdam. Levine is unassuming and cordially signals to the waitress. He politely asks for some more creamer. When our food arrives, like a hungry kid he enthusiastically tucks into that most typical of Dutch delicacies, the pancake. I guess you can’t judge a punk by his cover after all. We are here to talk about an unlikely pairing – spirituality and punk. Levine has made both his life mission, and his story is one of depth and transformation. Noah possesses a kind of strength which has nothing to do with physicality or image, and which has everything to do with living the hard, fast life – and surviving. Noah’s current business in Amsterdam is not, as some might suspect, to carouse with the city’s seedy underbelly. Instead, he is here to lead a Vipassana meditation retreat in Denekamp, around 2 hours drive outside Amsterdam. “When I first ‘got’ nirvana, it was like my first whiff of weed,” he says. “And I thought ‘This is pretty good,– I want the heroin!’” Although Levine grew up in a Buddhist home, at first he “didn’t get the point” of spirituality. His journey to Buddhism – like most – was long and troubled. Levine’s parents divorced when he was 2, and the intervening years were a blur of life on the road and a different school every other year. “I was shuffled back and forth between my parent’s homes,” he says. Never fully grounded anywhere and friendships never lasting, instability was a fact of life. “My mother was really struggling with alcoholism and drug addiction when I was a kid, and my father wasn’t there all the time; he was busy teaching. It was that typical broken home scenario,” he says. The situation, says Levine, “really set the stage for a lot of the internal pain that I was experiencing.” Levine took the classic teenage route of rebellion. It wasn’t long before he fell in with a group of kids who, today, we might jokingly refer to as ‘punks,’ but who in the early 80's were actually the real deal, not the postcard picture - and they were JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010

a force to be reckoned with. Drugs were part of the mix from the start. “It was a relief to start smoking pot,” he remembers. Going numb was a way out of the pain. Levine started frequenting venues which could only be described as a parent’s worst nightmare, and before he knew it, his life was awash with “drugs and punk, and eventually crime and addiction.” It was all played out against a soundtrack of the Sex Pistols, the Clash and Black Flag. Despite the way it looks to the casual observer, Levine at the time thought “drugs and punk was a solution,” he says, regardless of how poorly it was expressed. From his more enlightened position today, he believes that this embattled path, while tough, was a necessary one. “It’s never completely possible to find out the answer to the question ‘why?’” he says wistfully. “There are lots of people who have pain and don’t become drug addicts.” “I’ve sometimes reflected on whether it was karma to be born into such dissatisfaction, but mostly I think it’s more psychological – which is still karma,” he says laughing. What resonated with Levine and punk was the stuff of teen angst movies; the anger and oppression of youth, the yearning for independence and identity – “that feeling of ‘it’s not fair’” – he says. In other words, it was a credo that read like a case history of punk subculture, and the lure was irresistible. In and out of juvenile hall, Levine’s rock bottom came at 17 when he woke up in a padded cell, and was facing a 7 year prison term. “For the first time I was really scared of the consequences,” he says. “I was facing the biggest challenge of my life.” At the same time, Levine realized that he could no longer blame the system, his parents or the world for his predicament. Like it or not, there was only one person responsible for this mess. “My dad visited me in my cell and could see that I was in a lot of anguish. He told me to focus on my breath,” says Levine. Oddly enough, it was the same advice his father had been giving him for many years, but one which he’d always dismissed as something that “hippies and New Age weirdos” did. “It was only at that moment that I really heard him,” says Levine, “and became open to the possibility that meditation might be able to help me.” While trapped replaying a nightmare of events that happened or were going to happen, Levine had lost touch with the present moment: the only moment there ever is. What began as a simple distraction blossomed into a dedicated practice, spiritual study in India, two books, and work around the world as a spiritual teacher. His first book ‘Dharma Punx,’ is a memoir chronicling his rocky road, while the second – Against The Stream, is “a manifesto and field guide for the front lines of the revolution.” It is a bold claim – but is it a spiritual one? In fact, explains Noah, the links between Buddhism and punk are many. “The punk scene is born of a dissatisfaction with the status quo, and

that’s also the first noble truth of Buddhism. There has to be some level of dissatisfaction to start the spiritual path.” “I guess you could say I had a step in the right direction,” he jokes. “In this world, spiritual practices are by their very nature acts of rebellion”, says Levine. Our contemporary culture is preoccupied with image and surfaces, and is driven by delusions of status and material gain – and sometimes it seems increasingly so. “We’re wired for pleasure,” says Levine of our physiology, and everything in our culture aspires to that. “Our world personifies hatred and greed because it’s in us - we created it in our own reflection.” I ask how he’s coping with the accessibility of soft drugs in Amsterdam. “It’s tempting,” he says, “but I would be scared to – I don’t want to get back on that slide.” “It’s an act of rebellion to renounce or abstain from that,” says Levine. “It’s an act of rebellion to refuse to seek a life of pleasure, to refuse to be driven by survival instincts.” Indeed, the story of the Buddha starts when Siddhartha rejects his destiny as a prince and a sheltered palace life, which you can equate to a rejection of our material, ego-centred world. Levine acknowledges that the story could be regarded as “religious exaggeration” in the same vein as the Christian Garden of Eden story, but the point, he says, is that “it takes a lot of courage to swim against the stream.” How much? “It’s like a mental triathlon,” he says, since everything around us seems to work against it. “Plugging into the matrix, you have to practice radical acceptance, to relate to life on life’s terms, according to the laws of nature.” “It’s about learning to sit with the pain, and transforming it into compassion and kindness.” It’s not every day that you hear the words ‘compassion’ and ‘kindness’ coming from a punk, but it’s one of many surprises during our conversation. “Everybody has the choice to be kind and compassionate or to be stuck in self-centredness,” he says. Today, Levine looks at punk as an attitude, not a lifestyle, and he is happy to keep the label. Although he’s mindful that it is just a label. Whatever the inner intent, it’s all about the outer expression, he says. “There are some forms of punk that are very engaged with trying to create a positive change. And even though that comes from a place of anger, you’re still trying to make a change because you care,” he says. “But of course, Buddhists try to come at it from a place of love, not hatred. Maybe punk’s not so good at that!” Amen to that – or namaste, to be precise. Dharma Punx and Against The Stream are both available on Amazon and in good bookstores. —

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British Treasures Rapha

Everyone who is looking for a little cycling nostalgia with a modern twist should step in to the world of Rapha. The gentleman's cap, a classic cycling hat, is nice example of their classic characteristics: A must have for the urban driving dandy. The cap is made from a grey Melton wool and finished with characteristic black lining. Everything about this Gentleman's Cap reminds us of the lovely Homburg heads. Just buy a matching bike on the way. www.rapha.cc

Grenson SS11

Barbour

Traditional English shoe brand Grenson has hat an eye out for quality and style for more than 140 years. This summer the brand presented its Spring Summer 2011 in Paris. That is where we came across these two brothers in crime. We are so happy that we have another 12 months to determine which one of these fabulous look-a-likes will be taken home. Read more about Grenson in our factory report in this Journal de Nîmes.

After more than 100 years in the business Barbour is a 4th generation British family company with a unique taste for quality. The company was founded in 1919 by Malcolm Barbour. Although he supplied all kinds of clothing to his clientele, the brand got really known for its oilskin coats to protect the sailors and fishermen from the terrible weather that they were faced during their work.

British army Omega

www.barbour.com

www.grenson.co.uk

Swaine Adeney Brigg This St. James' street retailer of luxury leather goods supplied the Royal family since the 1800's and is known for its classic umbrella's and their horse riding accessories. Swaine Adeney Brigg is a living legend that feels like a homage to luxury traveling. But there is more for sale than outrageous Champagne Trunk: Traditional leather goods are their most important product group these days. All bags have a body of traditional saddle leather which is tanned with nautili extracts - long before a Green evolution was a fact.

Harris Tweed Tweed is the name of traditional woven wool that refers to the word twill, or 'tweel' in Scottish. Tweed is a hand-woven, woolen fabric that comes in all sorts of different patterns like for instance a herringbone. The rough fabric is known for its colored patterns and has been used in informal outerwear for decades. The name 'Tweed' originated in 1830 when A London merchant misinterpreted the word on a piece of paper as he thought it was a trade name referring to the Scottish river Tweed that flows right through the main textile region of Schotland. Although this traditional cloth will remind a lot of people of the jackets that their grand fathers or cigar smoking history teachers, some of the most sought-after brands (like Nigel Cabourn, RRL and L.L. Bean) use the traditional textiles in their latest collections. 38

This 1930's military steel men's watch was originally released for the Royal British Army. This can be concluded from the little arrow in the middle of the black dial. These 'broad arrow' Omega watches are the most searched after editions for any watch collector. The only thing I dislike about this particular watch is the cheap NATO strap that comes with it. According to a well respected client of ours, Erno Pieter, the best way to get your strap in harmony with a vintage piece is to put it in black tea for a day or two.

Lavenham Founded in 1969 by Mrs. Elliot and known for their superior country clothing and horse rugs Lavenham comes with a colorful spring/ summer collection – the perfect mix of traditional aesthetic versus contemporary styling. Enjoy British quality while taking a break at your little hide-out in the wild or during your 5 minute walk for a 'espresso machiato' around the corner of your spacious loft. www.lavenhamhorserugs.com

www.swaineadeney.co.uk

Men's file Here is an example of a magazine that will not be vague about its target group. Men's File is a magazine for men with filled with vintage cars, bikes, lovely style inspiration and photography of real people doing real things. Next to that Men's File creates a combination of content that could be described as multicultural. Surfers next to modernist architecture, we love it. www.mensfile.com JOURNAL DE Nîmes / Nº 5 the British issue, july 2010


Heritage Research The English clothing brand has been compiled for those of us who desire an authentic garment from a specific period but want a contemporary cut and aesthetic. That is, a garment which in design, components, and quality matches the original garment but can be assimilated into a modern wardrobe. The nostalgia behind these styles is what makes them attractive. They were born out of a time of necessity, designed for a specific purpose - to function and protect under adverse and challenging conditions. Since then they have become timeless fashion items, appealing to a rugged utilitarian image. Attention to authenticity, quality and history is the Heritage Research ethos. All the garments are handmade here in England, under one roof, by skilled craftsmen and women, there is no huge production line, each garment is made by one or two people from beginning to end. Original machinery and construction techniques are used where possible, the emphasis is on quality not quantity. Heritage Research will be sold at Precinct 5 and Tenue de NĂŽmes. www.heritageresearch.co.uk JOURNAL DE NĂŽmes / NÂş 5 the British issue, july 2010

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Woolrich th 180 Anniversary

Labelling themselves “The original outdoor clothing company is not only accurate, it is a deserved title as well, if you manage to celebrate your 180th birthday as a company. And no, that is not a typo: the company was founded in the same year that Belgium became an autonomous country. Legend even has it that Woolrich was the first company to use a zipper in men's trousers. To mark the occasion of its 180th anniversary, a special capsule collection for Fall 2010 has been launched. It consists of seventeen items for men and women in a limited run of 180 pieces of each style, and will honor the Woolrich archives, as evidenced by its choice of fabrics: wool, fleece and flannel. All items are a mix of heritage inspiration and a modern look. In the women's collection, the Audrey (Hepburn) Jacket is a definite highlight, which celebrates handmade knitwear and shearling elements. On the men's side, the Ranch Coat stands out, inspired by the wool and shearling coats, suited for riding or work on the ranch, as does the Charlie Brown Jacket, with a cashmere blend pile lining on the inside and cuffs and collar that are lined with chamois suede. Woolrich have a number of iconic garments: their Railroad Vest, for example, was introduced around the mid-1800's when the railroad through Pennsylvania was being built, and is still very much in demand. You might also recognize their red-and-black plaid hunting coat. The company started out nearly two centuries ago by producing wool and yarn for families of loggers and trappers and, similar to Red Wing Shoes Company, did not let wars (three) or Great Depressions (two, including this most recent one) get in the way of business. They produced and sold army blankets during the American Civil War. It has since continued its link with the army through their range of Woolrich Elite Series Tactical products, that are in high demand with areas such as law enforcement and military operations. Clothing that was produced in Woolrich's early years was all about durability, functionality and protection. Its rugged appearance carried an unexpected appeal with many, something which would only grow over time. Woolrich Woolen Mills, a division of Woolrich, still embodies that era today by focusing its activities on the rediscovery of the American manufacturing tradition and the look and feel of frontier America. Daiki Suzuki of Engineered Garments fame,worked with them from 2006 until this year. As Time Out New York pointed out in a portrait of him earlier this year, it ironically took a non-American designer to really capture the traditional American look. —

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The American Dream Joachim Baan and Mr. pen

Accompanying the release of this Journal de Nîmes is the opening of an exhibition with works by Joachim Baan (Another Company) and Emile pen (Mr. Pen). Titled "The American Dream". The photographs were taken by Joachim in the Red Wing Shoes factory in Red Wing, Minnesota, and were used by Mr. Pen as canvases for his illustrations. The art prints are based on construction workers of the early 20th century working on the skyline of America. The 7 works of art are hand screen printed, signed and numbered in a series of 10 and will be for sale at our Tenue de Nîmes store in Amsterdam until September 21st 2010. —

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Edwin If you twist, turn and re-arrange the letters that form the word 'Denim', you will end up with the word 'Edwin'. The basis of denim label Edwin was formed in 1947 by a Japanese man by the name of Mr. Tsunemi. He was one of the first Japanese people to fall in love with the American jeans heritage. Although nobody sold American jeans in Japan at that time, Tsunemi managed to get his hands on several pairs from The States that he would launder, and mend by hand before re-selling them to his first Japanese clients. He basically forged a new market because the jeans that were for sale in the early 50's were a far cry from the quality denim as made by the brands in the USA. Inspired by his American counterparts Mr. Tsunemi decided he wanted more than treating existing jeans labels: He had the desire to produce them himself with great quality, craftsmanship and aesthetics united in each pair. It took him until 1961 to actually create his first official pair of Edwin jeans. In 1963 Tsunemi really established his name in the market by producing the impressive 16oz ringspun denim (at that time a world record) with his first characteristic rainbow selvedge.  A quality mark that is still used in some of the Edwin jeans these days.

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But is was not just the denim that enabled mister Tsunemi and his Edwin brand to conquer the world: it was what he had started doing in the late 40's that would establish his reputation: Washing and ageing jeans. In the 70's Edwin was the first label to develop a washed jeans, a replica of the wornin rigid denim as used in industrial labor for its durability. Not surprisingly it would be the same brand that founded the queen of all denim treatments: the legendary 'Stone Wash'. It seems redundant to state that this technique still influences every denim company around the globe on a daily basis. Edwin became an authentic denim brand priding itself on innovation and craftsmanship. Their unique technology and hand wash processes make the brand one of the most respected experts around the globe. Brands like Lee Japan use the knowledge of the Edwin brand to recreate their icons from the past. A true honor for a competitive brand and a confirmation of their power to innovate. —

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Red Wing Shoes Amsterdam open July 22nd Reestraat 15 - Amsterdam

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Journal de Nîmes Nº 5