Sunday, August 19, 2007

How do you like your Samurais?

Samurai is going to make a completely new model for 2008, and they want our help to decide how it should look!

If you have any ideas, go to ringxring and discuss the new model for 2008. We've already been able to get a reissue of the famous S0710BK but this time in 17oz or 19oz denim! As long as your suggestions are fair and sound I think there is a big chance of getting your way with Samurai.
Then you could brag about how you designed your own Japanese jeans! ;)

You've seen this picture before and you love it.

Personally, I'd like to see a model very similar to the LVC 1947 501 in fit. I'm very much missing it, with its high rise and slightly slim legs, in the Samurai lineup. It's the most popular LVC model, for good reasons.

What do YOU think?

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Quiz resolve

The suspense of the denim quiz is killing you, no?

Here are the answers:

1. Thailand, denim from the infamous fake Levi's jeans.
2. Japan, Samurai S0500XX Texas cotton denim.
3. China.
4. Japan, The Flat Head 3000-series denim(wet dog-series).
5. China.
6. USA, Cone Mills. Levi's Vintage Clothing 1963 551ZXX. Supposedly the darkest denim of all LVCs, not sure if it's true.
7. Japan, Samurai S0505XX.
8. China.
9. Europe(Italy/Turkey?), Denim Demon Aajja second edition.
10. Japan, Studio D'Artisan SD-103.

It was hard, wasn't it? It really isn't possible to tell the origin of a piece of denim nor is it easy to pick the 'best' denim when you don't have a brand name or country of origin to go by.
I wanted to illustrate this and the prejudice against, for example, Chinese denim and of course that from other developing countries.

The only thing that matters is to which specification the denim is made. It is certainly possible to get denim from China that's as nice as the better Japanese denim, if you ask, and pay for it.
Cone Mills and Kaihara are big names and it's somewhat of a selling point for jeans with denim from these mills, but you should always try to look past branding and all types of labels.
Cone and Kaihara make a wide range of denim and I've heard that Nudie, Uniqlo, Levi's(for some jeans in their Vintage Clothing collection) and many Japanese brands get their denim from there, but they also make lower-end denim and I doubt that denim is any better than something from Turkey. It's evident that Kaihara makes many different types of denim, Nudie's denim is quite different from the Japanese stuff I've seen, and LVC's is quite different from both of these parties.
I think that a famous mill and brand name doesn't necessarily guarantee a high quality product, but will to some extent guarantee you won't get a really low quality product.

If I were to start my own brand today I would actually prefer to have them made in a relatively low-cost region(I think it'd be easier to enter the market with jeans that cost less than $300, but perhaps I'm wrong), if I could find a mill that was cooperative enough and easy to communicate with - I think this would actually be the weakest point of Chinese factories, some of them probably aren't all that dedicated to their work. I think that for the absolutely best in denim and workmanship, like exotic natural indigo dyes and autistic attention to detail Japan is the only choices, but jeans of good quality can come from all over the world.

For example, Filippa K's selvedge jeans and Cheap Monday's Latjo Lajban Vintage-line are made in China and while I'd never say these are top notch quality they're much better than some people would have you believe. They're easily as good as Italian-made goods(Italy feels a bit overrated to me by the way, I've never really seen great stuff from Italy).

The Chinese denim in this quiz is not the best I've seen and it was dyed with an indigo/sulphur-mix dye.
This is from China too and looks even better I think;

This denim is also from China, it's from 1996;

I hope this post made sense. If this topic interests you, come and discuss it at ringxring.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Studio D'Artisan SD-103 5 months

Repaired, thanks Anton!

Compared to 6 months S0500XX.

This picture doesn't belong here, but anyway, it's the S0500XX compared to Rickard's S0510XX(15oz version).

I like the denim and detailing of these jeans a lot but I'm not a big fan of the fit, in fact I think that's the biggest flaw that Studio D'Artisan has, the cuts aren't that inspiring.
In my opinion he SD-103 is unproportionate, the rise is too low compared to the width of the legs. The rise should either be higher or the legs should be a little slimmer and perhaps taper.
But this is only in regard to how they fit me, they might be perfect for someone else.
If I bought another pair of SDAs it would be the SD-101 which is a 50's fit with the same great denim as these have.

I had to get these repaired after four months but don't let that I scare you away from Studio D'Artisan. The denim is/was quite starchy and coarse and I wore the jeans fairly snug, which was also a contributing factor.
The quality is definitely there in every part of these jeans and you need to remember that you are in fact not buying jeans that will last you years and years, you're buying jeans that will wear out beautifully.

If you're European aolhnd like Studio D'Artisan I have great news for you. You'll soon be able to buy the brand's products in stores in the UK or order from there, which is easier and might feel more comfortable than having the stuff shipped all the way from Asia.

Want to know more about Studio D'Artisan? Then D'Artisan is the place for you!