INSIDE CANDIANI, DENHAM & UNIQLO RIVETANDJEANS.COM
NO. 5 / APRIL 2018
F / W â€™18
l_____V ER SACE S IL K BLOU S E W ITH METAL S T U DS , L EAT HER JACK ET AND B O LO T I E; FLOR A IN E FO S S O DENIM J EANS ; B -LOW T HE B ELT B ELT.
TABL E OF CONT E NTS 06 09 14 17 21 27 31 36 46 68 72
RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
EDITOR’S LETTER We’re dialing it back to milestones—those rare markers of how far the industry has come, and an opportunity to reflect on where it’s headed next. QUICK HITS From new trade show concepts, to sustainable technologies, discover the latest buzz from the denim supply chain. WEAR EVER Uniqlo is on a quest to create the go-to pair of jeans consumers wear and never take off. THE CANDIANI WAY As Candiani Denim turns 80, global manager Alberto Candiani reflects on the mill’s laser sharp focus on innovation and sustainability. SECOND CHANCE The future of pre- and post-recycled cotton denim leans on innovation and demand. THE DENHAM DECADE Designer Jason Denham shares how embracing new fabric technologies and establishing the right partnerships has evolved his brand into the globally recognized label it is today. RULE BREAKERS For Story Mfg, Daniel Silverstain and Alyssa Less, denim is a gateway to inventive fashion. RUNWAY TRENDS F/W 18 - 19 The convergence of streetwear and high fashion was evident on the Fall/Winter 18-19 runway as designers grounded their collections with denim. WILD ONES Designers head West this fall with rockabilly flair. AROUND THE WORLD IN DENIM From quality to speed, each of these five key denim manufacturing countries brings something unique to the table. ICONS The “Godfather of Denim” Adriano Goldschmied shares his advice for the next generation of denim heads.
hether it’s Levi’s slashing the time it takes to finish a pair of jeans, or the proliferation of next-day—and before long, even same-day drone delivery—it can feel like the denim industry is caught up in a constant race against time. But for now, we’re dialing it back to milestones— those rare markers of how far the industry has come, and an opportunity to reflect on where it’s headed next. That’s what this issue of Rivet is about. After 80 years of manufacturing denim, family-run Candiani Denim is still the “cool kid” on the denim block. The family’s passion for denim is authentic, while its vision for (and investment in) innovations have consistently delivered sustainable, industry-leading results. As the mill celebrates its 80th anniversary with new eco-friendly collections, fourth-generation denim maker Alberto Candiani shares with Rivet the legacy he hopes to leave behind. And considering what that legacy is likely to be, it isn’t any wonder why Jason Denham of Denham the Jeanmaker found a type of kinship with Candiani. Both share a willingness to innovate and adapt to consumer preferences, while maintaining laser sharp focus on their brand identities. Denham the Jeanmaker, celebrates its own milestone this year, marking a decade of denim with a calendar of special projects, including limited-edition jeans made with Candiani golden selvedge denim. The right partnerships are just one piece of the puzzle that has helped the Amsterdam-based label build staying power. For Denham, it’s been about staying true to his brand values and vision for denim. This issue also counts as a milestone of sorts for Rivet, as it’s the first issue released since becoming part of Penske Media Corporation. Rivet’s parent company, Sourcing Journal, was acquired by the growing digital media powerhouse last October—a move that has both broadened our resources and elevated our designs, as evidenced with this issue and our forthcoming website relaunch in April. Good looks, however, will only take us so far, which is why we’re also ramping up our coverage to better serve the denim industry. We plan on leveraging Sourcing Journal’s expertise in trade and sourcing with Rivet’s insight about denim trends, brands and retail to create a singular news hub for the global denim market. Expect to see more in-depth features with mill owners, designers and retailers, industry analysis, plus a closer look at denim culture. We want Rivet to be a resource, not only to offer insights on the ins and outs of the industry, but to serve as a platform to share your news and viewpoints. If you have a scoop to share or denim innovation to dish on, tell us. It’s your denim industry. Sincerely, Angela Velasquez, Managing Editor
C OVER C REDIT S : l_____ O N HIM : 7 FO R ALL MANKIND DENIM TOP UNDER LEVI’ S D E N I M A N D S H EARLI NG JACK ET; LEVI’ S J EANS; AMIRI BANDANA; TARIN TH O MA S R I N G S . l_____ O N HER: LAND O F DISTRAC TION C OTTON AND ELASTAN E TO P A N D J E A N S ; VA LENTI NO BELT; W O LF C IRC US RINGS; BATATIBA RING; TARIN TH O MA S R I N G S .
W E A SKE D OU R STA FF. . . W H AT I S YOUR FAVO R I T E PAI R O F J E AN S ?
Angela Velasquez Managing Editor, Denim M OTH E R D E N I M , TH E LOOKE R I N H E L LO K I T T Y, K I T T Y
Arthur Friedman Senior Editor LEVI’S
Genevieve Scarano Staff Writer E V E R L A N E H I G H - R I SE S K I N N Y J E AN
Tara Donaldson Editorial Director, Sourcing Journal AG OL DE , R I L E Y AI R B L U E
Jasmin Malik Chua Contributor A RT D EPA RT M E N T
Cass Spencer Creative Director N A KE D A N D FA M OU S, W E I R D G U Y D E E P I N D I G O S E LVE D G E
Celena Tang Jr. Designer J OE ’ S J E A N S FROM SIX Y E AR S AG O
Kara Chun Jr. Designer G U E SS, SU P E R H I G H - R I SE B L AC K S K I N N Y J E AN S
Ash Barhamand Photo Director SO U RC IN G JO U RN A L A DV E RTI S I N G
Edward Hertzman Founder & President FR A M E , L’ H OM M E S L I M
Caletha Crawford Associate Publisher J B R A N D M A R I A SKIN N Y I N F I X
Eric Hertzman Senior Director of Sales & Marketing M AV I J E A N S
Daniel Cavosie Client Services Coordinator J OSW I CK N E W YOR K , 5 X L J E AN
Joel Fertel Account Executive D L 1961
P RO DU C T IO N
Kevin Hurley Production Director John Cross Production Manager P REP RESS P RO D UC TI O N
Alex Sharfman Digital Imaging
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RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
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l_____BA N G KOK S TREET S TY L E: L AU REN YAT ES
MEET THE DENIM DUDETTES THREE YEARS AFTER her debut book, “Denim Dudes,” Amy Leverton honors female denim gurus and dudettes with “Denim: Street Style, Vintage, Obsesssion." From Levi’s archivist to street style stars, the book highlights the female makers, creators and shakers of denim. Here, Leverton offers a behind-the-scenes look at the making of her book, available now. —Genevieve Scarano RIVET: How do you define a denim dudette? AL: The beauty of denim is it is for everyone. A
denim dudette could be anyone with a passion for indigo. But, specifically for the book I selected women who have a more direct link and work in all aspects of the industry. So, women who work for mills or laundries, denim designers, brand founders, artisans and craftspeople, store owners, influencers and magazine editors. I purposely made the reach very broad to really capture the different interpretations and looks and the true diversity of denim.
Cordura has teamed up with Lenzing and Artistic Milliners for The Five S’s, a development that shows the softer side of durability. Short for Stay Black (color-fastness), sustainability (solution-dyeing versus piece dyeing) strength (Cordura fiber), softness (Modal) and stretch (nylon), the development is based on an innovation of solution-dyed black nylon 6.6 staple fiber, as well as solution dyed Tencel Modal with Eco Color Techology. “It’s very unique for us because we’ve never made a solution-dyed staple fiber before and we’re really trying to solve a problem around color-fastness,” said Cindy McNaull, global Cordura brand and marketing director. “When women buy a black pair of jeans they’d like them to stay black.” McNaull added that the fiber is based on Cordura’s high-strength fiber technology, Invista T420HT. “It’s a patent pending technology that we first brought into the military world to make the lightest uniform,” she said. “We’re excited to put these innovations to the test and bring them to the market.” —Arthur Friedman
RIVET: What are some commonalities between the women you interviewed? AL: Almost every woman talked about
CORDURA AIMS FOR SOFT AND STRONG
feeling “herself.” That's again what makes denim such a unique fabric, because here you have a book full of very different women with very different styles and each and every one of them has found a denim style that makes them feel truly themselves. A jean that reflects their personality and gives them confidence. I think that is the coolest. RIVET: What traits do denim dudes and dudettes share? AL: Passion, 100 percent. Every
person in both [books] spoke from their heart, told stories and often got emotional about their jeans. They really cared for the industry they work in and that passion came through. Denim is a very emotional fabric, it is very personal and that comes across in the stories. RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
A COLOR STORY
Lenzing is expanding its Sustainable Denim Wardrobe with a new collection focused on color, called “Blues & Hues.” The line features Refibra, Tencel Modal with Eco Color Technology and a series of blends. “We see that color is coming on stronger in the market and certainly Tencel works really well with color,” said Tricia Carey, director of global business development for denim at Lenzing. “And we’re mixing that with some indigo product in the group." —A.F.
AFTER THE UPCOMING show in Paris, May 23-24, Denim Première Vision is splitting its time between the City of Light and a new European city each year. First stop? London, Dec. 5-6. Guglielmo Olearo, Première Vision S.A. international exhibitions director, shares why they’re taking the show on the road. -G.S. RIVET: What is unique about London’s denim and design scene? GO: London is a vibrant place—it is a place with
COTTON INC. SHOWS DENIM’S DIVERSITY
l_____COT TO N I N C.
A CASE OF WANDERLUST
Cotton Incorporated launched a showcase that demonstrates the diversity of cotton denim applications. Mills that make cotton fabrics and yarn have access to the photo collection that portrays the various constructions and techniques that can be applied to fabrics. Non-traditional wovens include jacquards with indigo warp and laser-etched effects. Indigo knits from Unitin feature the textural quality of the fabric in combination with ring-dyed indigo. The showcase also features laser-marked jerseys and French terries, including one made from Tonello Kit Batik Garment Technology with a permanganate alternative. —A.F.
RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
history, a place to welcome different cultures and people and it is unique because it is a city open to innovation. London has a huge list of brands working with denim. We decided to move to London to have a kind of better proximity with the market. London for us was a natural choice and we are very glad that people accepted our choice with positivity. People are so excited about doing the show in Paris and London. We always move to fashion capitals where there is business because we need to provide this immersion and be something extremely inspiring every time. RIVET: How is the role of the denim trade show evolving? GO: The denim fashion industry is totally
changing. The consumer behavior, the acceleration of the production as well as the numbers of collections have a huge impact. And I am still persuaded that trade shows have a major role to play. But, to play a major role a show must have the vision, humility, resources and capability to adapt to the today trends and needs, keeping its D.N.A. and values. This is what guided us to develop the new concept of Denim Première Vision.
KU B A DA B RO WS KI / W W D/ R EX/ S H U TTE R S TOC K
l_____LO NDO N S T RE E T S T Y L E
LYCRA T400 WITH ECOMADE
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18% is made from plant-based material.
68% of the total fiber content is sustainable.
INVISTA IS ADVANCING its sustainable initiatives with Lycra T400 with EcoMade technology fiber. Jean Hegedus, global director of Invista’s denim business, said Lycra worked on developing this generation of the fiber with a strong sustainability aspect to meet requests from mills, brands and the company’s own goals. The fiber is targeted toward firms in the value chain interested in developing sustainable fashion collections. Hegedus explained that Lycra T400 with EcoMade contains two different polymers in each filament. “This creates differential shrinkage between the two polymers for excellent stretch and shape retention,” she said. “With EcoMade technology, one of the polymers is made from recycled PET, while a portion of the other polymer is made from plant-based material, such as corn.” —A.F.
TWIN DRAGON DOUBLES DOWN ON SUSTAINABILITY Twin Dragon is improving its sustainability platform by developing Liquid Indigo and EcoFinish collections that save on chemicals, energy and water usage. Created as an alternative to mercerization, Liquid Indigo is estimated to eliminate 700,000 pounds of sodium hydrosulphate, a bleaching and reducing agent used in denim production, from being dumped in the environment. Liquid Indigo also has better color saturation compared to powder indigo, plus increased shade consistency and colorfastness to light and home laundering. Eco Finish is a finishing process that utilizes specialized machinery that significantly reduces water consumption by eliminating the need for a rinse and de-size step in the garment production process, resulting in 95 percent water and chemical savings. Twin Dragon said the finish provides a cleaner, better defined and softer hand than previous mercerized raw denim and that Eco-Finish goods will eliminate 95 percent of the water and chemicals needed in processing. —A.F
CLOSING THE LOOP
l_____ D E N I M G E T S A SEC OND C HANC E
Artistic Milliners is the first denim fabric and garment manufacturer in Pakistan to embark on closed loop denim project with I:CO. The project will involve the annual production of 12 million meters of closed loop denim. Artistic Milliners purchases post-consumer materials from I:CO, shreds it down to cotton fibers that are processed to form yarn and then made into recycled fabric. “The closed loop denim provides the basis for the sustainable, economic solution of the future–the circular economy,” said Ebru Ozaydin, Artistic Milliners director of sales and marketing. —A.F. RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
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R E TA I L REPORT
n Uniqlo’s Spring ’18 marketing video, the company’s 24 Hour Jeans campaign comes to life with people leaping, stretching, working and playing in their favorite denim while a clock ticks off the hours. The spot shows the company’s awareness that we all live in our jeans. It also acknowledges a simple truth: while we love jeans, we’re all now spoiled by athleisure. The more time consumers spend in yoga pants, the more influenced they are by their stretch and performance capabilities, raising shoppers’ expectations for everything in their closets. That new standard is helping drive Uniqlo to produce jeans with unmatched stretch and hand that both flatter the figure and go the distance. To meet that goal, the retailer, which is part of the Fast Retailing fashion juggernaut, launched the Jeans Innovation Center (JIC) in Los Angeles in 2016. Part laboratory, part design studio, the JIC is denim focused and customer obsessed. “The mission of the Jeans Innovation Center is to make the ideal jeans, experimenting with different styles—modern, classic, vintage—and incorporating details in fit, fabric and finish to meet the needs of any lifestyle,” said Fast Retailing’s JIC director Masaaki Matsubara. The company said that though most people own enough jeans to start their own highly curated denim boutiques, the reality is they typically have only one or two that they reach for time and again. And Uniqlo wants to be the one to sell them that go-to pair. Applying the same laser focus it does to all product categories through research and development centers around the globe, the Japanese company is focused on perfecting three things: fit, fabric and finish. The fourth pillar of the retailers’ design focus is sustainability, as the world has become more sensitive to apparel’s effect on the environment. “We see the trend of simple and organic lifestyles more and more today. We as a retailer need to adjust not only our product assortments to our customers’ aesthetics, but also our method of manufacturing to be more sustainable,” Matsubara said, adding that ensuring the longevity of the finished product also plays a big part in responsible design.
FABRIC When it comes to offering product consumers will want to live in, fabric development is a crucial step. Uniqlo focuses on comfort, stretch and lightness—properties it achieves by collaborating with industry experts. “We are constantly thinking about how we can bring more comfort or lightness of stretch to our jeans to make everyday life better through clothing,” Matsubara said. When searching for the right textile manu-facturers to work with, Uniqlo has been careful to select only those that share its quality
zap rather than the chemical-laden, water-intensive wash cycles that were once required. Similarly, the company’s Eco-Stone Wash replaces pumice stones, the mining of which has had an adverse impact on the environment. To ensure the painstaking development work is reflected in the final product, Uniqlo goes one step further. “We share our washing methods which developed at JIC with our factories, and our wash specialists conduct training sessions with them,” Matsubara explained. “This helped the factories to execute the original design and allowed us to deliver higher wash quality to our store worldwide.” By developing new processes and working hand-in-hand with its factories, Uniqlo is able to offer a wide assortment of styles each season.
When it comes to improving fit, Uniqlo turns to collaboration here, too. The retailer works closely with sister label J Brand on design and fit to bring its finishes and fabrics to life. The first designs from the JIC, which debuted for Fall ’17, included the women’s High Rise Cigarette style, which features a straight leg designed to accentuate the length of the leg and uses Kaihara denim for stretch. For men, the Ultra Stretch Skinny offers a slim cut and Kaihara stretch that Uniqlo said recovers to maintain its shape. EZY jeans for both men and women are constructed from a fabric with a soft pile for a feel that’s meant to be akin to sweatpants. The style also features an adjustable elastic waistline to ensure the pants stay in place without the need for a belt. Looking ahead to future collections, Matsubara is reticent to divulge too many details, but it’s clear that his team is focused on balancing outside influences with Uniqlo’s core philosophy, which is grounded in innovation and attention to detail. “While we remain informed of the latest fashions and L.A. denim culture to experiment with different fits, fabrics and finishes for FW2018, our overarching mission is to make improvements to our products season after season—whether it's the smallest detail on a button or a more stretchable fabric in our Ultra Stretch Jeans—in order to continuously make everyday life more comfortable for our customers,” he said. l
Through a singular focus on finishes, fit and fabrics at its Jeans Innovation Center, Uniqlo is on a quest to create the go-to pair of jeans consumers wear and never take off. w ords_____ CA LE TH A CR AW FO R D
and value ethos. The retailer has teamed up with Kaihara, which has been a mainstay in Japanese denim for more than 120 years. The company, which commands half of the denim market there, is fully integrated from spinning to finishing. Through this collaboration, Uniqlo has achieved selvedge jeans it says transform the typically stiff style into a supple, stretchy option. Combining the expertise of Kaihara with that of Toray Industries, Uniqlo’s long-time partner on a wide range of innovations, the retailer also developed its Miracle Air fabric. As the name suggests, these jeans are designed to be roughly 20 percent lighter than conventional denim, while providing about 15 percent more stretch, achieved by using a hollow-core fiber woven into the cotton.
FINISHES To achieve the faded aesthetic popular on many styles of jeans, the company uses a new laser technology that provides the desired look with a quick RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
SOURCING l_____HOW EVER, W E REALI ZED V ER Y EA R LY TH AT W E NEED ED TO ADAPT AND S H IFT
17 l_____A L B E RTO CA N D I ANI (C ENT ER) B REAKS B READ W I T H M AU R I Z I O D ONAD I , AMY LEVERTON AND DA M I A N O DA L L'A N ES E
THE CANDIANI WAY Candiani Denim honors its past by securing a sustainable and innovative future. w ords_____ A N G E LA V E LA S Q U E Z
andiani Denim’s transformation from a weaving facility founded in 1938, into the multi-faceted textile operation it is today has been the direct result of the Candiani family’s shared passion for denim, innovation and sustainability. The family-run mill, located in the Ticino Park nature reserve outside of Milan, honors its 80 years of denim know-how and heritage with sustainable technologies and fabrics that push the industry’s boundaries. Through its development of chemical- and water-reducing technology, Indigo Juice, and its use of Kitotex, a technology
that uses a natural polymer that saves water, chemicals and energy, Candiani has set the bar high for innovation—both for itself and for the industry. Up next for Candiani? Biodegradable denim. As the mill celebrates its 80th anniversary, global manager Alberto Candiani, the great-grandson of founder Luigi Candiani, reflects on what has made his family’s mill into a globally recognized name for quality denim and dishes on how the mill is transforming the next generation of jeans. RIVET: From the way brands design, to the way consumers shop—everything is changing. How has the role of a denim mill changed? AC: We used to make denim fabrics. That was it and
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that is obviously still our main focus, but that's no longer enough. We need to constantly come up with new fabrics and create wash instructions for their use. We do this with the help of our design centers in Milan and L.A. With these centers, we educate our clients about how to optimize the fabric treatments according to their sustainable contents and how to process them efficiently. In addition, we feel the need to communicate the story behind Candiani and our fabrics, so we supply our clients with all of our marketing literature in order to educate and hopefully provide answers to the questions that they didn't know should be asked. This kind of R&D, service, marketing and educational approach represents the
modernity of a denim mill on a global scale and fills up the void left from the wild outsourcing mentality which has prevailed in the past 25 years. RIVET: Four generations have worked at the mill. What mark will the current generation leave? AC: The current generation will make a new
denim, a Denim 2.0. Quite honestly, denim as we know it should be gone by now. It is a filthy mess and just think—it’s the most worn item in the world…it's a real disaster. Candiani has always focused on clean production, but it's now time to make a whole new fabric with biodegradable and even compostable features without compromising aesthetics and performances. In celebration of our anniversary, we will be using one of these fabrics, our newest
development called Re-Gen denim, to create our 80th Anniversary Collection. In addition to using Kitotex and our Indigo Juice dyeing technology to make this fabric, Re-Gen is composed of 50 percent Refibra fibers and 50 percent recycled cotton in both the warp and the weft, which means there is no fresh, raw cotton woven into this “no cotton” denim. We are also launching a new fabric family called INK, which stands for indigo, nitrogen and Kitotex—all biodegradable materials. This is a new generation of denim that is 100 percent landfill-free with zero chemical residuals and it’s biodegradable. As a kid, while watching "Star Trek," I never saw a pair of jeans on the Enterprise. I don’t want to envision a futuristic world where humans, humanoids and aliens wear basically Lululemon. RIVET: Candiani is a heritage name, but also a leader in innovation. How do you define “heritage denim” these days? AC: At Candiani, heritage and inno-
l_____RE-G EN DEN IM
vation go hand in hand. We are 80 years old, but we don't look at the past the way we look at the future. The past is our history, our experience, our work. The future is innovation and with no innovation there is no future. Even more importantly nowadays, there is no future for the planet if we do not immediately apply sustainable innovations to what we do. Heritage denim is a nostalgic definition of whatever denim was 150 years ago—an amazing piece of workwear for the U.S. miners, a beautiful coat for the army in the port of Genova, a strong blue fabric with plenty of natural imperfections. We still make real heritage denim with our true ring character, made in the most authentic way, without any artificial additions. We still make amazing 15oz. selvedge qualities, 100 percent cotton, 100 percent indigo. This is part of us, of who we are, the real challenge is to preserve the same beauty while “killing” all of the nasty stuff that the word “heritage” is hiding behind its romance. RIVET: So what keeps you excited about the business of denim?
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AC: Innovation, revolution, change. These factors
are a daily challenge and my favorite part of this job—R&D and fabric engineering. I am positive Candiani can seriously change the whole industry and that's how I wake up every morning, thinking I can do something relevant for the industry, the consumer and the planet.
"WE ARE 80 Y E A R S OL D, B U T W E DON' T LOOK AT T H E PAS T T H E WAY W E LOOK AT T H E F U T U R E.” —A lber to C andiani, Glob al Manager RIVET: What do you want Candiani’s legacy to be? AC: Visionary. I want the vision to become real
though, and we need a lot of science, research, investments and passion to make this happen. RIVET: If you had to look into your crystal ball, how do you envision the industry in the next 10 years? AC: The problem is that in today's world, they
manufacture very cheap crystal balls and they don't work as well as they once did. In my crystal ball, I saw a projection of myself wearing a pair of Candiani denim on the Enterprise. I saw some bad companies going to other planets looking for cheaper production with the funny excuse of “educating the aliens.” I saw bad guys not caring about what they consume, eat, wear and throw away. But I also saw conscious consumers who care because they believe that less is more if less is also better. I saw a few good companies making the right choice for planet Earth, so hopefully we don't have to leave it for the Enterprise. l
The future of pre- and post-recycled cotton denim leans on innovation. w o r d s _____ JASMIN MA L I K C H UA
RRI IVVEETT NNOO. .55 // MA AP R CI LH 22001188
Made-By, a European fashion not-forverything old is new again, at least where the denim industry is profit that has partnered with the Alliance for concerned. Mills are churning out fabrics made from castoff Responsible Denim, rated recycled cotton more clothing and brands and retailers are relishing these so-called highly than even organic cotton in its environ“recycled” jeans as they move from niche to norm. mental benchmark for fibers. Besides requiring All this buzz is thrilling to the Alliance for Responsible less energy, water and land, as well as fewer chemDenim, an initiative based out of the Amsterdam University icals than its virgin counterpart, recycled cotton of Applied Sciences, which works to mitigate the environalso generates fewer greenhouse-gas emissions mental impact of the denim industry. Instead of being relegated to a small rack during production. in the back of a room, recycled styles are now “front and center” in the converUsing reclaimed materials tackles an addsation about sustainability, said Hélène Smits, initiator and lead of the Circle itional problem: the prodiTextiles program at Circle gious volume of textile waste Economy, one of the organizathat ends up in the landfill or tions involved in the alliance. incinerator. Americans alone Kilim, Orta and Tavex are toss aside 13 million tons of members of the small but growtextiles—about 310,000 trucking fraternity, as are the Arcadia loads’ worth—every year, Group, Asos, Gap, Nudie Jeans according to Secondary Matand Mud Jeans. All of these erials and Recycled Textiles, companies see the “need to an international trade associmake denim more sustainable, ation for companies that sort and they want to be a part of post-consumer textiles for rethat,” Smits said. cycling. Denim, as many critics “These textiles are valuhave noted, is a filthy, dirty busiable materials that can be used ness. Just growing the cotton again,” Smit said. that goes into a pair of Levi’s 501 jeans consumes about 2,570 liters of water, according to a life-cycle assessment by the OVERCOMING OBSTACLES denim giant. That’s seven times There are limitations to using more than fabric production, recycled cotton, of course. cutting, sewing, and finishing For one thing, it costs more. combined. Replacing 20 perAmassing used clothing, then cent of the cotton in denim combing through a sea of l_____L IN D EX with fibers from post-consumer polyester and rayon blends is sources, on the other hand, can labor-intensive work. (Some save up to 500 liters per garmills prefer to collect only ment, Smits said. secondhand jeans for this reason.) So is the process of mechanically chop“There’s a lot of innovation in the dyeing proping up garments into pulp for spinning. cess and in the finishing process, which is great,” she Plus, mills have caps on how much recycled cotton they can use. Because said. “But those water and chemical savings are only the shredding process reduces the fiber’s staple length, which can weaken the a small percentage of the savings you get by using integrity of the resulting fabric, manufacturers have to bolster the recycled cotton recycled material.” slurry with other, stronger fibers—virgin cotton, say, or in the case of Lindex’s Indeed, a 2016 study commissioned by Even Better Denim, a mix of virgin cotton and polyester derived from post-conH&M found that employing recycled cotton sumer recycled plastic bottles. “for the stages up to when the fiber is ready for “Right now, it’s only possible to have a maximum 20 percent of the garment spinning” reduces climate and water impacts in post-consumer recycled cotton,” said Anna-Karin Dahlberg, Lindex corporate by up to 90 percent. sustainability manager. “After that, the fibers get too short and the quality of the
" T H E S E T E X T I L E S A R E VA L UA B L E M AT E R I A L S T H AT CA N B E U S E D AG A I N ” H É L È N E S M I T S, I N I T I ATO R A N D L E A D O F T H E C I R C L E T E X T I L ES P R OGR A M AT C I R C L E EC O N O M Y
RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
mechanical recycling’s constraints. The retailer has partnered with the Hong Kong Research Institute of Textiles and Apparel to develop a way of recycling blended textiles into new fabrics and yarns without any loss in quality. It has also tapped Re:newcell, a firm that dissolves waste cotton and viscose into high-quality raw materials, for future collaborations. “So even if there are challenges, we see great innovation breakthroughs,” said Cecilia Strömblad Brännsten, acting NEXT STEPS environmental sustainability manager at H&M. Potential contamination is why mills like Candiani in Italy opt to use As talk of a “circular economy,” where products are pre-consumer fibers, their own cutting-floor scraps among them, made to be reused and recycled rather than thrown away, in their recycled denim. Candiani works with Lenzing to blend its grows more vociferous, the spotlight on recycled denim has also recycled cotton with Refibra, a type of Tencel that the Austrian become brighter. fiber manufacturer creates using cellulose and post-industrial Mud Jeans, for one, has crafted a business model based on cotton waste. selling jeans, taking them back at the end of their life, and then Lenzing makes Refibra using a closed-loop chemical recycling those old jeans into new ones. Through trial and error, the process, a tack the company says neither compromises fiber company has honed its logistics to an art. strength nor limits the amount of recycled content. Still, the brand is keen to increase the proportion of recycled Candiani’s Re-Gen denim, for instance, comprises 50 cotton it uses per garment—40 percent, which is higher than the percent Refibra and 50 percent pre-consumer recycled cotton industry average. It’s hopeful, though. in both its warp and weft. “There is no fresh, raw cotton “We’re just starting to come to a tipping point where we get econwoven into this denim,” said Marykate Kelley, the mill’s omies of scale,” said Dion Vijgeboom, co-owner of Mud Jeans. “So, we’re marketing manager. getting to the point where it’s becoming interesting to work like this. l H&M is another company eager to overcome fabric will be inferior and it will rip easily.” The provenance, and chemical composition, of other people’s throwaways can also complicate matters. “You don’t really know where the denim comes from,” Dahlberg said. “And they could come from a country or brand where the legislation of chemical content is not as tough as the one that we follow.”
"S O E V E N I F T H E R E A R E C H A L L E N G E S, W E S E E G R E AT I N N OVAT IO N B R E A K T H R OU G H S ” — CECIL I A ST R Ö M B L A D B R Ä N N ST EN, H& M ACT IN G EN V IR ON MEN TA L S U STA IN A B IL I T Y M A N AGE R
WEARABLE SUSTAINABILITY Recycled denim is no longer a niche category. Here are some of the high-street brands making post-consumer recycled cotton jeans accessible to the masses.
JACK & JONES
Thirty-six of Mud Jeans’ 40-plus styles each comprise up to 40 percent post-consumer recycled cotton—twice the industry average. The company gleans much of that content from jeans that its customers return, although it accepts other brands as well.
In 2014, H&M debuted Close the Loop, a line of denim derived from reclaimed cotton fibers from its garment take-back program. The capsule, which includes looks for men, women and children, has since become an annual ocurrence.
ASOS works with Recover, a Spainbased textile recycler, to source the postconsumer denim fibers that go into its recycled jeans. The mechanically shredded fibers are then mixed with virgin cotton made in Africa to create yarns strong enough for re-spinning.
Jack & Jones, a subsidiary of the Danish retailer Bestseller, launched a pilot this year with two styles of jeans that utilize post-consumer recycled cotton. To buttress the shortstaple fibers, the firm adds Better Cotton or organic cotton to the mix.
When Target introduced Universal Thread, its sizeinclusive line of denim, in February, it was mindful of its pledge to use more sustainable fibers. Post-consumer recycled cotton makes an appearance in select styles, along with other better-for-the-planet materials like Tencel.
The Finnish retailer one-upped its own resource-conserving Better Denim line when it introduced Even Better Denim in the fall of 2017. The latter range includes more sustainable materials such as postconsumer recycled cotton and polyester derived from recycled plastic bottles.
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A D V E R T O R I A L
VERIFIABLE QUALITY Retailers and consumer that pay a premium for Supima cotton can now be certain they’re getting the real thing.
U PIM A , W HI CH RE PRE SE N T S T H E
more than 500 U.S. family farmers that grow the superior grade cotton, has partnered with Oritain Global Ltd., an international forensic science firm, to provide a testing platform to identify and verify the origins of Supima cotton. In partnership with Supima, Oritain will use its scientific technology to measure the naturally occurring elements that exist within the cotton fiber based on the geographical production area the cotton is grown in. The project will cover the entire American Pima cotton growing region and create a unique “fingerprint” for Supima cotton. “The unique fingerprint analysis identifies different levels of chemical attributes that are found in the product itself and enables the cotton to be verified against its claimed origin,” Grant Cochrane, chief executive officer of Oritain, said. “This platform offers a solution to address the traceability challenges that have been faced by the global cotton industry in recent years.” Buxton Midyette, vice president of marketing and promotion at Supima, said the program also “keys into a broader movement about traceability, authenticity and verification that consumers today want.” As Cochrane noted, manufacturers, brand owners and retailers are increasingly focused on ensuring there’s transparency within their supply chains.
“A huge part of this is knowing and trusting where their product comes from,” he said. “This is of particular importance as brands make claims associated with provenance and want to be reassured their product–in this case, Supima cotton–isn’t being contaminated by inferior products coming from undesirable sources.” Supima’s supply chain partners have asked for this capability, according to Midyette, to ensure the purity of their product and confirm they are getting what they pay for, since American pima cotton costs roughly twice as much as standard cotton and has a track record as a luxury fiber.
G L O BAL NE T WO RK With a global licensing program spanning more than 40 countries and 400 licensees, Supima maintains an active network of industry partners dedicated to manufacturing and supplying some of the world’s finest textiles. Products for home and apparel are marketed by top brands and retailers as Supima-branded products to highlight the quality of the products made utilizing America’s premium cotton fiber. “We know that the fashion industry is highly-motivated in the sustainability space and we are ideally positioned to help them ensure the integrity of their products, as sustainability compliance is
closely intertwined with origin,” Cochrane added. Marc Lewkowitz, CEO of Supima said the partnership with Oritain fulfils Supima’s decade-long objective to find a simple and natural way to use the fiber to verify provenance. “We were impressed that Oritain doesn’t need to apply any identifier or tracer during the manufacturing or processing phases, which makes it a very simple solution to deploy from an operational perspective,” Lewkowitz said. “The Oritain methodology simply measures what is naturally inside the fiber.”
THE DENHAM DECADE Jason Denham looks back at 10 years of blending his passion for heritage denim with innovation and forward-thinking design. w ords_____ A N G E LA V E LA S Q U E Z
he success of Denham the Jeanmaker is a lesson in staying true to your core. Founder and chief creative officer Jason Denham launched the Amsterdam-based label in 2008 with the goal of creating a premium quality product that pays homage to Japanese denim’s tradition and attention to detail. Ten years later, the brand is sold in more than 20 countries, offering men, women and children full range collections that capture denim’s unique ability to be simultaneously traditional and innovative. Denham shares with RIVET how embracing new fabric technologies and establishing the right partnerships has evolved the brand into the decadeold globally recognized label it is today.
RIVET: You launched the brand in 2008 with 14 oz. Japanese selvedge. Today stretch and super stretch styles are among the brand’s most popular styles. What was the turning point? JD: It’s true we started the brand at the height of
the ‘heritage trend’ which was great because it educated consumers about quality. However, we realized very early that we needed to adapt and shift from heritage quality focus to performance and sustainability, whilst always maintaining quality materials and a modern aesthetic. The turning point was seeing how well the skinny silhouettes were performing for women, which was credit to the technology and development by the denim mills. Then, the same demand came for skinny silhouettes for men and it was a natural move to adapt the same technology in men’s denim. That said, we have always stayed true to our brand values and Japanese selvedge denim has remained in the collection since the first season until today. Only the balance and consumer demand has shifted.
l_____JA SON DEN H A M H A S COLECTED OV ER 2,000 PA IR S OF TA ILOR IN G SCISSOR S
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ship. We both respect and appreciate the history of our industry, but we both have a shared appetite for innovation.
RIVET: What has been the biggest hurdle to overcome during the first 10 years?
J D : There have been many, but I guess patience is a big one. It’s important when you start any business to make a 3-5-year plan and aim for it. We have had many opportunities to go off plan which could have changed the course of our brand, however I’m happy that we stuck to our strategy. Like a band, you need to get past your third album, stay relevant and not be afraid to do things differently and adapt your business model. In the last decade, we have seen literally everything change in our business—the switch of power from online to offline, the dominance of social media and the remodeling of agents and distributors. RIVET: Consumers’ perception about quality and price have changed in the last decade. How have you maintained quality and premium price point?
RIVET: What piece of advice woul you give a denim designer starting their business today? JD: The first thing I would say is your
timing is perfect. The denim market has never been so wide open and so accepting of newness. Anything goes in denim right now, which is great [because] it makes the market exciting and keeps the denim category relevant. My advice would be don’t be a ‘one trick pony.’ Keep developing your brand, but always stay true to your core brand strategy and maintain focus in everything you do. RIVET: Who continues to inspire you? JD: Adriano Goldschmied never fails
l_____D ENHA M IN H IS A MSTER DA M H Q
JD: By staying true to our brand values
and mission statement. It’s true that denim today is available on every price level. We have always worked with the best Italian and Japanese mills and laundries and maintained a premium price point business. Very early on we adopted a storytelling mantra as a brand-unique selling proposition which invariably is about quality product. RIVET: In terms of innovation in denim, where do you see the most exciting advancements coming from? JD: Italy and Japan have the leading
" T H E DEN IM M A R K E T H AS N E V ER B EEN SO W IDE OPEN A N D SO ACCEP T ING OF N E W N ES S.”
denim mills in my opinion. Performance has massively influenced denim in the last 8 years and it’s for the good. Denim has always been an inherently cotton based product, but today the introduction of multi blend spinning and advanced technology with Lycra T400, Tencel, modal and polyester has transformed the denim business. RIVET: What are you most proud of about the brand? JD: Hitting 10 years is a great milestone that I’m
very proud of and seeing my brand sitting alongside established, legendry denim brands in selected distribution is very humbling. This was my goal.
—J a son Denh am, founder However, looking back I think it was a brave move to build my brand in Asia and Northern Europe and focus on Japan and Holland as key markets. I am exceptionally proud of our Japanese business. Today we have 25 Denham stores in Japan with an incredible team of dedicated denim lovers led by our Japanese partner Mr. Aki Negishi-San. RIVET: What has been your most important collaboration? JD: I would say Candiani has been one of our most
important brand building collaborations. We have a great history together and a great working relationRIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
to inspire me. He’s relentless, his constant and consistent energy for denim is second to none and there will be no other like him. He is the true godfather of denim. He never tires and never fails to innovate or rest on his achievements. Every time I see him he has a great story to tell, new sustainable idea or string of projects that he is busy working on. I have the original Genious Group poster hanging behind my desk and it inspires me every day. He reminds me I still have a lot to achieve. RIVET: How do you envision the denim industry in the next 10 years? JD: Good question—it’s changed 360
degrees in the last decade and the industry is going faster than ever so I’m pretty sure it won’t stop. We all live in a ‘see it now, want it now’ social generation. This demand will get stronger and supply will deliver. Design will continue to react to performance and limited editions will become stronger and stronger. One thing for sure is I believe that local production will become a big trend in future. Shorter carbon footprints and local source for local demand. I believe in local development for local markets. Ten years ago, when we started this brand, we shipped Japanese denim to Italy because they had the best laundries and then shipped finished goods back to our Japanese customers. We realized quickly that this was madness. l
RULE BREAKERS Thereâ€™s more to denim than the basic 5-pocket jean. For these three designers, the fabric is a gateway to inventive ideas and boundary-pushing designs. w ords_____ A N G E L A VE L ASQ UE Z l_____S TO R Y M FG .
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THE NATURALISTS W HO
W HER E
UNI Q N E S S
MAKING THE IMPOSSIBLE possible has been the key source of inspiration for Story Mfg. founders Bobbin Threadbare and Katy Katazome. The U.K.-based unisex brand launched in 2013 as a label focused on making items that required extra care and handiwork. In turn, Story Mfg. has blossomed into an ethical fashion brand turning slow made processes into accessible fashion. Sustainability wasn’t even a factor in the beginning, Threadbare said. However, the designers found that processes like natural dyeing and recycling techniques resulted in better, more unique product. “The things we value and love are often sustainable because they are more interesting,” he explained. Sustainability has become a larger priority for Story Mfg., especially in its natural dye process. Story’s yarns and fabrics are dipped in pots of fermenting dye. Here, harsh chemicals have been replaced by bacteria. Threadbare points out that other brands use natural indigo as a dye, but then use chemicals to reduce it. “It’s the worst of both worlds,” he said. Denim was an entry point for Story Mfg., which favors boxy, unisex silhouettes. However, its collections have evolved each season as the designers master a new alternative dye and fabric techniques. Collections now include denim as well as overdyeing, batik, handwoven garments and block prints. For Fall ’18, the brand introduced a yellow dye made from jackfruit trees, and it's starting to explore alternative fibers, including fabrics made with lotus. Until recently Threadbare said he thought he had a clear idea of who the Story customer was—a contemporary man or woman who favors clean cut workwear. However, new pockets of interest keep forming. The brand’s trousers perform well with women over 50 at one U.K retailer, while teenage boys in Japan love the brand, too. “We’re designing for ourselves. I know its cliché, but it’s true,” Threadbare said. “When we make something to fill out the range, it never does well. When it’s something we design for ourselves, it always sells.”
THE MIXER WH O
WH ER E
New York City
UN IQN ESS
WOMENSWEAR DESIGNER DANIEL Silverstain finds beauty in denim by using it in unconventional ways. Known for exuberant use of textiles, New Yorkbased Silverstain has taken a particular interest in denim. He has coated it, waxed it and treated it in ways that no longer resemble denim. However, the fabric brings a sense of familiarity to Silverstain’s futuristic and architectural designs. “Denim is a fun material to work with,” he said. “It brings wearability to pieces and balances RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
collections.” Plus, the appeal of denim is universal. “When you tell a customer a piece is denim, they love it because they relate to it. It’s a user-friendly fabric, people know what to do with it and they understand how denim behaves,” he said. Upcoming collections include chambray and colored denim in pops of red and green. What you won’t find from Silverstain is a basic pair of 5-pocket blue jeans. “Now, every brand has their pair of jeans, but I don’t see us as part of that,” he said. “We’re using denim in less conventional ways. We don’t have a traditional blue jean—there’s no need for it— there’s enough of that in the market. We want to bring something fun and fresh.”
WHO MADE 20 MILLION
PA I R S O F
DENIM I N 2 01 7 ? PA R T N E R S W I T H M I L L S, D E SI GN E R S & B R AN D S
LETâ€™S CREATE. DENIMS@SYNERGIESWORLDWIDE.COM
WWW. S Y NER G I ES WOR L DWI DE.C OM
l_____ALY S S A L ES S
THE DECORATOR WH O
WH ER E
New York City
UN IQN ESS
DESIGNER ALYSSA LESS believes denim can be as covetable as a piece of fine jewelry. The women’s ready-to-wear designer turned jewelry designer turned denim designer combines her creative experiences to make visually and texturally interesting luxury denim. “I’m a really big fan of prints and textile design, surface treatments and embroidery. I wanted to bring my love of that world to denim,” Less said. The designer launched her eponymous “Made in USA” collection in Spring ’16 with the aim of bringing the same level of detail a designer would put into a printed dress to jeans or a jean jacket. “A lot of the denim industry is based on what has been working, but people want newness,” she explained. Less’ signature embossed denim, or 3-D denim surfaces with unique highs and lows, took more than a year to develop. And she takes her designs a step further by sewing laser cut leathers inspired by shapes from the the 1950s and 1980s, and lately has been working to make two-dimensional effects through dyeing techniques and patchwork. “We’ve been sewing things onto denim prewash and then removing them to get different shapes,” she described. Part of the hurdle in developing new techniques, Less said, is getting the factories on the same page. “There’s a lot of challenges because the denim industry and factories are rooted in their ways and they can’t wrap their head around with what I’m trying to make,” she said. “It can be difficult to explain things that have never been made.” Collections are labor-intensive, but its work Less said her denim-loving fashion clientele appreciate. “They tend to be people who want fashion pieces, but also love denim. It’s really cool to bridge the two world,” she said. “I want to make fashion denim pieces that can be worn on the subway, but also feels as exciting as a runway piece.” l
"A LO T OF T H E DEN IM I N DUS T RY IS BA SED ON W H AT H AS B EEN WOK R I NG , B U T P EOP L E WA N T N E W N E S S” —A l y s s a Le s s, Desig n er
RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
with creora® performance spandex 360° stretch for comfortable wear and perfect silhouette
high power spandex for superior stretch and recovery with chlorine resistance
For more information on creora® spandex contact
David Jang email: firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: +82-2-707-7353
www.creora.com creora® is registered trade mark of the Hyosung Corporation for it s brand of premium spandex.
RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
Vetements: Pixelformula/SIPA/REX/Shutterstock; Faustine Steinmetz: LAURENT BENHAMOU/SIPA/REX/Shutterstock; Ralph Lauren: Pixelformula/SIPA/REX/Shutterstock; Balmain: Pixelformula/SIPA/REX/Shutterstock; Frankie Morello: Simona Chioccia/IPA/REX/Shutterstock; Dolce and Gabbana: Pixelformula/SIPA/REX/Shutterstock; DSquared: sicki/IPA/REX/Shutterstock; Versace: Pixelformula/SIPA/REX/Shutterstock
FAUSTINE STEINME TZ
Crystals, hardware, fur and tassels decorate jean jackets, bottoms and outerwear. Ralph Lauren’s denim mini dress trimmed with indigo-dyed feathers floated down the runway, while Faustine Steinmetz’s felted denim
is a skillful display of whimsical design. The takeaway? Denim is your canvas — use it.
RUNWAY TRENDS F/W 18â€“19 BALMAIN
DOLCE & GABBANA l_____
FRANKIE MORELLO l_____
w ords_____ A N G E LA V E LA S Q U E Z
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Designers balanced â€™90s-era anoraks, oversized button-down shirts and boxy coats with voluminous bottoms. The slouchy silhouettes are modernized with twisted hems, shading and dramatic trims. Deconstructed
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H E D M AY N E R l_____
Aalto:Pixelformula/SIPA/REX/Shutterstock; Facetasm: WWD/REX/Shutterstock Balenciaga: Pixelformula/SIPA/REX/Shutterstock; Hed Mayner: WWD/REX/Shutterstock
FACE TASM l_____
A A LTO l_____
trucker jackets with curvy seams and bulky shearling are intended to swim on bodies.
I N T E R NAT IONA L DE N I M T R A DE FA I R
S AV E THE
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Designers dallied with deconstructed denim to create hybrid silhouettes and multi-functional denim.
Moschino made a case for wearing multiple pairs of jeans at once. Lutz Huelle introduced the
RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
Tommy Hilfiger: WWD/REX/Shutterstock; Balmain: WWD/REX/Shutterstock; Off-White: Pixelformula/SIPA/REX/Shutterstock; Lacoste: Pixelformula/SIPA/REX/Shutterstock
LUTZ HUELLE l_____
twisted jean jacket, while Vetements reliably played with seams.
LOVE DENIM LOVE NATURE Seazon, the largest and most innovative high end denim man fact rer in China. E-mail: email@example.com Tel:+86-757-81891399 A : No.8 Zhixing Roa , Xiqiao Textile base ,Nanhai Foshan City ,Guang ong Province, China.
coordinates From Off-White’s blue and white toile ensemble, to Tommy Hilfiger branded gear, coordinates
RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
Moschino: REX/Shutterstock; Lutz Huelle: IAN LANGSDON/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock MSGM: WWD/REX/Shutterstock; Ralph Lauren: REX/Shutterstock
RALPH LAUREN l_____
TOMMY HILFIGER l_____
made an impression on the runway. The matchy-matchy look smacks of ’80s power dressing.
This isn’t your lumberjack play on denim and plaid. Versace bowed a
line of nostalgic tartan from the ’90s, while patchwork plaid and flannel brought a preppy,
EACH X OTHER
RIVET NO.5 / APRIL 2018
Au Jour Le Jour: Simona Chioccia Sicki/IPA/REX/Shutterstock; VERSACE: Pixelformula/SIPA/REX/Shutterstock Isa Arfen: WWD/REX/Shutterstock; Each x Other: Dominique Maitre/WWD/REX/Shutterstock
AU JOUR LE JOUR
cozy look to cuffed jeans. Dainty ribbon belts add a prim touch.
PHOTO GR APH ED B Y H A N N A H KH YM YCH / STYLED B Y W W D STA FF
Fall â€™18 denim heads West.
RIVET NO.5 / MARCH 2018
l_____ON H I M: COACH LEATH ER JACK E T; 3 X 1 J E ANS ; S ANDRO SCA R F. ON H ER : M.I.H JEA N S DEN IM S HI RT; P E NDL E TO N COAT; BELT BY B-LOW TH E BELT; R J GR A Z IANO B RACE L E T S , W O L F CIRCU S R IN GS, BATATIBA R IN G A N D TARI N T HO MAS RI NG S WOR N TH ROU GH OU T.
RIVET NO.5 / MARCH 2018
l_____DV F TR IACETATE A N D POLYE S T E R B LO U S E U NDE R N. 2 1 â€™S WOOL SWEATER A N D SKIRT; WRANG L E R DE NI M JACK E T; VI NTAG E BOLO TIE (WOR N TH ROU GH OUT ).
l_____ D R I E S VA N N OT EN JAC KET; VI S VI M C OT TO N D E N I M S HI RT; VI NTAG E B OLO T I ES ; W O L F CI RCU S E A R RI NG .
l_____ F I L SO N COT TO N H EN LEY; V IN TAGE LEE DEN IM JACKET; ACN E SU E DE JAC KE T A ND JEA N S; TA R IN TH OMA S R IN GS.
l_____A.P.C. DENI M B LOU S E
l_____V ER SACE SILK BLOU SE W ITH METAL S TU DS , L EAT HER JACK ET AND B OLO T I E; FLOR A IN E FOSSO DEN IM JEA N S ; CALVIN K L EIN J EANS B OOT S ; B -LOW T HE B ELT B ELT.
MARK ET EDI TO RS : L U I S CAMP U ZANO, E MI LY ME RCE R, ANDRE W S HANG FASH I ON AS S I S TANT S : VI CTO R VAU G HNS , K AYANA CO RDW E L L H AI R : RI AD AZAR AT ART DE PART ME NT M AK EU P : NAM VO NAI LS : MARY S O U L MO DELS : L I V S O LO AT W I L HE L MI NA, TAY L ANDAU AT NE X T MO DE L S
l_____ON H I M: V IN CE TU RTLENECK U NDER CALVIN K L EI N B U T TON-DOW N S HI RT, J EANS A N D BOOTS; A MIR I SCA R F. ON HER: COACH DRES S AND L EAT HER JACK ET; DS QUARED2 JEA N JACKET; R 13 BOOTS.
RIVET NO.5 / MARCH 2018
WE AIM TO MOVE THE DENIM INDUSTRY INTO A NEW ERA OF SUSTAINABILITY
A SNEAK PEEK INTO OUR NEW LEED PLATINUM GARMENT FACILITY
*LEED certification is in progress and the final result is awaited from USGBC
To fulfill this commitment, in collaboration with the World Wildlife Fund, we have planted 27,000 Mangrove Trees. One tree for each employee.
MANGROVES ARE AN ESSENTIAL HABITAT FOR ENDANGERED SPECIES
AS PIONEERS IN SUSTAINABLE MANUFACTURING, WE STRIVE TO PROTECT OUR ENVIRONMENT AND OUR WILDLIFE.
CREATED BY KINGPINS
With the Kingpins Show having evolved into a far more successful event than we could ever have imagined, weâ€™re all the more driven to keep elevating Kingpins to the next level. Kingpins has been a curated denim trade show since day one. Transformers is also a living network of professionals working in manufacturing, design, education, recruitment and technology, producing events such as the Transformers summit series and partnerships with Denim Days, the Fashion Institute of Technology, Jean School, and many more.
Throughout 2018, you will see Kingpins sharing news and opinions via our social media, digital platforms, and partners. In a world of manipulated information, we need to ensure that we create a strong industry platform where the real facts can be seen and heard. Change and innovation start with being informed. Join us on Facebook, subscribe to our newsletter, and be part of the conversation. Iâ€™d love to meet you there. - Andrew Olah
Andrew Olah Founder Kingpins
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KINGPINS TRANSFORMERS SUMMIT INVITING THE INDUSTRY TO TACKLE TRANSPARENCY Reliable information about the products consumers eat, wear, and interact with on a daily basis is practically nonexistent. Today, most brands aren’t held accountable for their product components. But that’s going to change. Companies that think transparency is just a buzzword with no bite are likely to be eaten alive when it does. But I would rather see the industry change than become lunch. Kingpins started the Transformers summit series in 2014 as a way to educate and advocate for a cleaner jeans industry. The denim industry needed a higher-level seminar where our industry changemakers can present themselves and share their knowledge. The next two editions of Kingpins Transformers, to be held on April 17 in Amsterdam and June 5 in New York, will take on the topic of transparency, or the ultimate commitment by brands and retailers to share all available information about their products. Past editions have focused on water, industrial waste, and chemistry, as we sought to inform and inspire those who
Image courtesy of Bayer
recognize the need for change in the denim industry. This time, the summit, sponsored by Rivet magazine, will be tackling the biggest issue facing the industry. In the long term—or the notso-long term—every company will have to be transparent and
show its entire supply chain. And consumers won’t want to buy from brands that don’t give that information, withhold it, or simply don’t know it. For companies that don’t clean up their acts quickly enough, I foresee a fate similar to the rise and fall of IBM, which
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failed to recognize that the industry was going in the direction of personal computers, stuck to its mainframe roots and ultimately ceded its dominance to upstart players. In apparel, the upstarts are already disrupting the industry—and consumer expectations. Leading the pack is Everlane, with its “radical transparency” promise and sales that reportedly doubled for the past three years. The brand allows shoppers to know where their clothes are made, get the backstory on each factory, and see photos of the entire process—all with one click. When the brand launched its first-ever denim offering—a collection of considered basics—the waiting list topped 40,000. To me, Everlane represents tomorrow, even for those brands that don’t recognize it today. Everlane is growing by leaps and bounds because
of its business model. We can be sure it will be copied, the way all successful business models are copied. While Everlane has baked transparency into its business model, most brands and retailers will need to determine their own path, as there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Through panels and interactive sessions that include movers in the fiber, textile, technology, chemical, and machinery sectors, Kingpins Transformers educates companies in order to help them move forward. For a complete list of speakers and panelists and to register for Kingpins Transformers, visit www.kingpinstransformers.com. Use promo code “Rivet” to receive a free Transformers cap. - Andrew Olah
Because we take denim seriously we created an equation:
COMFORTABLE LOCAL SHAPING ADVANCED SHAPING SMART STRETCH
ONLY WHERE IT IS NEEDED WITHOUT SACRIFICING COMFORT
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DENIM DAYS RETURNS WITH EDITIONS IN NEW YORK AND AMSTERDAM AND OUR DEBUT IN NASHVILLE Denim Days, the international denim phenomenon that unites the best denim brands, retailers, hands-on workshops, vintage treasure hunting, seminars, shopping, and more has a full calendar for 2018.
NEW YORK DENIM DAYS SEPTEMBER 21-22-23 September 21
This year, Denim Days will stage indigo-soaked festivals in New York (September 21-23), Amsterdam (October 22-28), and Nashville, TN (November 10-11).
DENIM LEGENDS SPEAKER SERIES
Spearheaded by true denim insiders—House of Denim, Modefabriek, Kingpins Show, and HTNK Fashion Recruitment & Consultancy—the Denim Days festivals in Amsterdam, New York, and now Nashville will connect denim professionals, designers, and brands to denim consumers like no other event can.
Denim lovers from across the spectrum— fashionistas searching for the perfect pair of sexy jeans, fade junkies looking to compare notes on raw denim, purists on the hunt for handmade and hard-to-find indigo items, and designers shopping for inspiration—will find the denim of their dreams at the trio of Denim Days festivals. Food, live music, and drinks will round out the festival experience. To help you plan your calendar, here are the latest Denim Days details.
Katie Murphy Amphitheatre Fashion Institute of Technology
DENIM DAYS NEW YORK – DENIM MARKET Metropolitan Pavilion 125 West 18th Street Visit www.denim-days.com for tickets. September 23 DENIM DAYS NEW YORK – STREET FAIR West 18th Street, between 6th and 7th Ave. Free admission
Back for its second edition, New York Denim Days will once again host a day-long seminar series on September 21 and a two-day consumer event for the true-blue community of denim enthusiasts, including a street fair, denim market, hands-on workshops, and more. Plans for the festival include events at retail stores throughout the city as well as a series of New York Denim Days pop-up shops at New York Waterway terminals during New York Fashion Week (September 6-14).
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The original Denim Days will return with a full roster of events, including a week-long City Center program featuring sales and events hosted by retailers; the two-day Amsterdam BluePrint festival with a denim market, seminars, workshops, installations, brand activations, music, exhibits, and more; and the Kingpins Amsterdam show, the B-to-B denim sourcing trade show.
AMSTERDAM DENIM DAYS OCTOBER 22-28
The newest city to get the Denim Days treatment, Nashville Denim Days will connect indigo aficionados and denim heads to the denim industry through brand activations, hands-on workshops by artisans and denim mills, vintage markets, live music, and more. The event will be organized in close collaboration with the Nashville Fashion Alliance (NFA).
NASHVILLE DENIM DAYS NOVEMBER 10-11
MARATHON MUSIC WORKS
CITY CENTER PROGRAM
1402 Clinton Street, Nashville, TN
Visit www.denim-days.com for sales and events throughout the city. October 24-25 KINGPINS SHOW AMSTERDAM Gashouder, Westergasfabriek By invitation only October 27-28 BLUEPRINT FESTIVAL October 27-28 Gashouder, Westergasfabriek Visit www.denim-days.com for tickets.
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BOOK OF DENIM VOLUME 2 PREVIEW With the recent launch of Denim: Street Style, Vintage, Obsession by Amy Leverton and with Book of Denim Vol. 2 due out in June, 2018 looks like a great year for denim books. Denim Digest met up Book of Denim’s founder and creative director Peter van Rhoon for a quick update on all things indigo. You launched the first Book of Denim in 2016. What’s different for Volume 2? In the preface of Volume 1, one of the observations I shared was: “The soul of anything is to be found at the heart of the body. And at the heart of denim are the manufacturers. The craftspeople. The scientists. Those who invent and innovate, but hardly ever find the limelight. Those who sow, weave, wash, dye and destroy.” I still think that’s true, but for the second volume we wanted to put more focus on designers – behind-the-scenes people working at brands – and also bring in some directional stories. Why is there only one Book of Denim every two years? We’re aiming to make something special and lasting. Every story is done exclusively for this book and some of these take months of research and preparation. And most of the longer features take up to a week to photograph – if not longer. It’s a slow way of working but we want to get it all just right.
Image courtesy of Danny North
The first Book seemed focused on men’s denim. Will things be more balanced in the second edition? I’m afraid not. It’s clear there would be no denim industry without great female brand owners, designers, buyers, developers, etcetera. But since we also intend to tell a story about style, we choose to focus on men’s denim. Amy did a great job with her book on denim dudettes. And I truly hope in the near future, we will do a publication on the most exciting contemporary women’s denim. Check bookofdenim.com for the special pre-order offer.
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AROUND THE WORLD IN DENIM 68 Key denim manufacturing countries and what
each brings to the industry. Though a tried-and-true American favorite, the westernization of the world in fashion has made denimlust a global phenomenon. And with more players developing new ways to reach new consumers faster, denim manufacturing has become just as diverse as those who wear it. The industry—valued at more than $57 billion, according to P&S Market Research, which also says the sector will experience an annual growth rate upward of 6 percent through 2023—has gotten more innovative and advanced as both makers and buyers look for denim that does more while leaving a lesser impact on the environment. The move away from simply chasing cheap in favor of putting more into the product has also served to shift the market share map for denim manufacturers. From China to Italy, and from sustainability to supply chain innovations, here’s a look at what some of the top denim producing countries are doing for the market.
w o r d s _____ TARA DON A L DS ON
Bit by bit, Bangladesh is establishing itself as a real leader in denim. VAL UE: $ 508 MM The Southeast Asian nation known UN ITS: 7.2 MM largely for its low-cost manufacturing, contributed the third most denim imports to the U.S. last year. In 2017, Bangladesh shipped $508 million worth of denim apparel to the U.S., a nearly 10 percent jump from where it stood the year prior. That’s been thanks in part to two things: highly competitive costs and innovation. While European mills had been known for being at the forefront of R&D, Shams Mahmud, managing director of Bangladesh’s Shasha Denims Limited, said that has been less the case of late. “Because of the rise of energy costs and also wages, they have cut down on R&D, and this is where a country like Bangladesh comes in,” Mahmud said. “Human resources are not that SUPPL IER :
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expensive in Bangladesh and then the cost of electricity, water is not that much, so that gives us the scope to fill this vacuum and come up on our own.” The focus for Bangladesh has been sustainability. Though lower cost than other countries, Bangladesh doesn’t seem to skimp on machinery, employing the latest iterations of high-tech equipment to improve products and processes. More and more, circularity is coming into the conversation, too. So far, Shasha has produced nearly 1.5 million yards of denim made from post-consumer waste. Going forward, Mahmud said more mills in Bangladesh will be looking to go green with their blue, using more eco-friendly materials, like organic and BCI cotton, looking into cleaner dyeing technologies, and turning to technical denim that does more while using less. “That’s something that we’re offering buyers right now, and for that reason a lot of the big brands are shifting their denim base from the European denim mills to the Asian denim mills just to get more of the R&D,” Mahmud said.
China has long been the leading manufacturer of denim in VAL U E : $ 922 MM terms of volume, and U N I T S : 10.3 MM when it comes to getting denim apparel to the United States, the Asian powerhouse is still the largest supplier—though its share continues to slide as Mexico closes the gap between its own second place spot and China’s lead. Last year, China shipped $922 million worth of denim apparel to the U.S., nearly 2 percent less than what it shipped in 2016, but the country still accounts for more than 25 percent of overall U.S.
Though relations have grown tense over the course of the North VAL U E : $ 793 MM American Free Trade U N I T S : 7.9 MM Agreement (NAFTA) renegotiations, Mexico is second only to China when it comes to supplying the U.S. with its jeans. The country contributed $793 million worth of denim apparel to the U.S. last year. And though its share slid more than 8 percent over 2016, Mexico still makes up nearly 22 percent of overall U.S. denim imports. Mexico is known for high-quality fabrics and the convenience of speed to market when shipping to the U.S., which has been key for fast fashion SUPPLIER:
denim imports. “Chinese denim fabric mills are still very strong, especially for new innovation developments,” said Ruyi Zhong, vice president of Foshan Season Textile and Garment Co. based in Guangdong. And much of the country’s innovation and development in denim has been centered around fabric with a friendlier environmental footprint. China may not have been known for eco consciousness in years past, but the country has been cracking down on polluters in a big way, with non-compliant factories facing government-ordered closure. “Eco fabric has become a big trend,” Zhong said. “From our company, we develop ‘Ecology Denim’ collection, which is including pre- and post-consumer recycled cotton/poly, but we are the only one in the market using the post-con-
brands looking for quicker turn denim. That fact has been part of solidifying Mexico’s position supplying a heavily-denim donning United States. Roughly 40 percent of men’s and boy’s jeans in the U.S. come from Mexico, where leaders like Levi Strauss & Co., VF Corp., Lee and Wrangler have supply chains set up. According to a report released by the United States Department of Agriculture last year, Mexico is the seventh largest exporter of denim worldwide, and it’s held that spot for 15 years. The latest developments coming out of Mexico for denim, according to Kaltex America design director Alvyda Kupinas, are largely aligned with the global market trend toward greater sustainability. Manufacturers in Mexico, according to Kupinas, are using eco-friendly blends like Tencel
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sumer yarn for warp.” “The Chinese government will continue to execute the strict environment protection, therefore, only those good mills who have strong R&D, a high-quality control system and the ability to control costs will be able to survive. And those not able to meet the environment protection standard will be closed down,” Zhong said. “I believe China’s denim industry—or even the whole industry—will transform to a better and more high-end level.”
Key U.S. Suppliers
69 25% CHINA
6% PAKISTAN 14% BANGLADESH
Modal and Repreve recycled polyester with moisture management properties. There has also been continued importance placed on developing performance stretch denim with CoolMax, ToughMax, DualFx and bi-stretch denim with 360-degree comfort. When it comes to finishing, the focus has been on foam coating, ozone finishing, overdyeing, digital printing, and waterless and low energy laundry applications. Price may not be Mexico’s strongest selling point, but what it does offer often makes up for that. “In general product from Mexico is priced higher than the Asian competitors, but when you consider the inventory carrying costs, delivery costs and lost opportunity retail sales due to lead time response time, the total cost becomes more attractive and competitive in the market,” Kupinas said.
Turning to Italy, it’s true denim seekers have always looked to VA L U E : $ 18 MM the country for high U NI T S : 41 k quality, and that hasn’t changed. What they’re getting with that quality now more than in the past, is performance and sustainability. “Clean denim” in terms of both look and content has been among the latest developments coming out of Italy for denim, according to Alberto Candiani, a denim expert who runs leading Italian SUPPLIER:
mill Candiani Denim, his family business. “Performance is a given factor to all stretch denim nowadays, so the focus is more on sustainable fibers, eco dyes and finishing,” Candiani said. “Taste, creativity, innovation, a finer aesthetic and hand feel have always been part of what sets the Italian denim industry apart from others.” Sustainability has been a built-in factor for sourcing in Italy, which is known for having strict environmental legislation, and ethics and quality have been top of mind, too. But those qualities—now more sought after as the sector turns toward greater transparency—don’t come without cost. Speaking candidly, Candiani said, “This is certainly the downside of making a ‘popular’ item like denim in Italy. Costs are obviously higher here. Salaries, energy, water, everything. Innovation has its own costs too and the government does not support research at all. Making denim in Italy is 25 percent more expensive than what it is in Turkey (which represents our strongest competition), probably 50 percent more than India, Pakistan and most of the Far East countries.”
Cost has contributed at least in part to fewer Italian denim imports coming into the U.S., where an overwhelming majority of mass market retailers can’t pay the prices for Made in Italy denim and ever expect to meet their already thin margins. Italy just inched into the top 20 list of those supplying denim to the U.S., supplying $18 million worth of denim apparel in 2017, a nearly 10 percent dip from what it shipped the previous year. The country accounts for just half a percent of overall U.S. denim imports.
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Skirting the general ills in the apparel industry, Pakistan’s VAL U E : $ 214 MM denim sector has hit U N I T S : 2.16 MM on a pretty positive period. The country is the fourth largest supplier of denim to the United States, and in 2017 the country shipped roughly $214 worth of denim apparel to the U.S., a nearly 20 percent jump over what it shipped in 2016. Needless to say, the denim industry in Pakistan is thriving—even at a time with other mills around SUPPLIER:
the world are struggling. “Around the globe, many traditional centers of textiles and apparel production are seeing their mills and factories cutting back,” said Henry Wong, director of product development and marketing, North America at Pakistan’s Artistic Fabric & Garment Industries (AFGI). “Suppliers in Pakistan are continually investing in innovation and sustainability. In this thriving, dynamic environment, we see Pakistan’s industry leaders constantly asking themselves, ‘how can we make better products?’ Then they go ahead and do it.” For AFGI, one of those ways it’s making better products is by turning to old materials to make new ones, rather than depleting more of the world’s resources sticking solely to virgin inputs. The company recently added a post-consumer waste tearing plant to its facilities, allowing it to
transform old jeans into new fabrics entirely in house, which has served to reduce what would have otherwise ended up in landfill. “There is an inspiring readiness to try new things, even—or especially—when they seem outside of normal conventions,” Wong said. “For designers and product developers, this is an ideal place to turn ideas into realities. Imagine a sandbox in which you can play with all the latest toys, from the most recent state-of-the-art laser machines to the newest dyeing and finishing technologies.” More than that, at a time when trade protectionism is ramping up in one part of the world, companies are looking to trade beneficial trade opportunities and adjusting their sourcing strategies to suit. For one, Pakistan has duty free access to the European Union under the Generalized Scheme of Preferences Plus (GSP+) program, which has proven beneficial for the country. “More and more, European retailers are sourcing from Pakistan to take full advantage of the speed, flexibility, and quality many producers here offer,” Wong said. l
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"LOVE W H AT YOU D O AN D MA KE THE PASS I O N THAT YO U HAV E FO R DE NIM D RIV E YOU R D ESIG N A ND J U ST FO LLOW YO U R I NS P I R ATI O N. " â€”A D R I A N O G O L D SC H M I E D
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I LL US T R AT I ON : M E RC ED E S D EB EL LA R D - F OL I O
AMERICA’S COTTON PRODUCERS AND IMPORTERS. Service Marks/Trademarks of Cotton Incorporated. © 2018 Cotton Incorporated. Source: The Cotton Incorporated Lifestyle Monitor™ Survey (www.CottonLifestyleMonitor.com), 2013.
Speak with consumers and you’ll discover that they want cotton in their clothes and home goods. More than 80% have stated that they prefer jeans, towels and sheets made of cotton. 66% are bothered that retailers and brands would substitute man-made ﬁbers for cotton. They love cotton so much that over half of consumers say they’re willing to pay more to ensure their T-shirts and denim jeans stay cotton rich. Cotton is clearly on your consumers’ minds. Shouldn’t it be on your label?
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