Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Day 78 | Manolo interview

I'm always interested to read more about denim, jeans, Dr.Denim or any other story relating to the denim phenomenon. And let's be real, this is a phenomenon. When eight out of ten people on the street is wearing the product in one form or another, it has to be. I mean you don't see chinos on eight out of ten people, or corduroy for that matter.

So it's with my stumbling across the internet, that I found It's a website that covers style for men, and they did an interview with Alexander and Johannes from Dr.Denim. It's in Swedish, so I translated it so more people could understand. You can view the original article on

"We had a talk with Gothenburg Brothers Alexander and John from Dr. Denim on their favourite jeans, role models and why jeans seems to survive all trends.

Tell us the brief story of Dr. Denim.
Dr. Denim Jean Makers operated by a family with 35 years experience of denim. Alexander, John (brothers) and Morten (old pike) began with Dr. Denim in 2003 and the first deliveries were sent out in February 2005. Morten handles a large part of production, while everything from design to distribution is handled by us.

Can you describe the process leading to a pair of Dr. Denim jeans? From sketch to finished pants?
Alexander and I make a sketch that we send to one of the factories we work with. First, they do a prototype, and at the same time they work on a new laundry wash for us, because we supply them with new washing recipes all the time. Then, we will review the prototype and make adjustments. The next step is to decide on the model and washing
categorization for the season collection, shown at fairs and in stores, for the buyers. Then comes the production, often with little more fine tuning and a few months later, the jeans hit the stores. It usually takes between three and nine months from idea to finished product in the stores.

The drafting begins with the details that back pocket, coin pockets, seams, fit, wire colours and wire distance, and other design elements. We specify the course of every single thing - from shades of threads to the nuances of buttons, pocket lining, threads on the inside so on. At the same time, we select materials, and doing laundry experiments on the side, and of course we fit samples.

Do you have any examples of the genre?
We think that Paul Smith has made a really good job with his trademarking, all the way from garage operations to where he is to date. His colourful interpretation of both casual and formal-wear is impressive. There is no logo trash, which is something that there is too much of today.

What seems to survive all the jeans trend cycles?
There is no simple explanation, but there is a lot of renewal, which is something that happens all the time in the jeans industry. As you're working a lot with spinning, weaving, dyeing and laundry treatments, so you can
do new stuff all the time, and this is precisely why it's fun to work with denim.

And it is possible to adapt to so many different styles, so it fits in so well with everything from vintage, to dress, to... whatever it may be. Therefore, it is highly likely to become a standard in the closet - it is so established that it can hardly disappear. And we have a lot of interesting ideas of so far untried novelty, so an idea drought should not happen any time soon.

What is your favourite pair of jeans? What is so special about just them?
They are a pair of Unagi from Dr. Denim's first production series, and also our first jeans model made from raw urban edge denim and that I had on faithfully each day since the first delivery. Firstly it is all the frictions and stains in the history of a genuine pair of Dr Denim's, and secondly, so is one of each of the very first things we have done. Better "a good pair of jeans is like a member of the family" feeling is hard to find."

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