...Also known as The Hangover.
I'm going to leave out the bit about drinking too much neat gin at The Weekend gig and getting in the elevator with a wheelie bin and I'll skip straight to my denim highlights from last week's shows in the City of Sin. First up: Liberty!
Levi's Launch THE ICONS
I stopped by Levi's to see Brian, Alishea and crew as thats always a nice way to start. I have been intrigued by their new collection anyhow, as I know there have been some interesting developments at the denim giant and the product is really starting to shine again. I wasn't disappointed and really think they are starting to get back to the important stuff.
They launched a new initiative called the ICONS, kick-started earlier this year with their modification of the 501CT (customised and tapered) which made big waves and got us all back in love with this classic brand. The stand was split into mens and ladies and revolved around the 501 jean, the womens cut-off short, the 505, the trucker and the western saw-tooth (hence the name ICONS) but each piece was lovingly modified, striking a balance between timeless, essential and contemporary. I think they nailed it.
Really great, authentic washes and finishes for both mens and women's. A bit of selvedge in women's and a lot in mens and at really great prices as I recall!
Contemporary pieces like this woven striped tee above, playing with the indigo twill line really caught my eye in the womens line. Whereas for mens the darkened vacation spread collar and a summer ecru package looked on-point yet wearable.
Stronghold play with some kick-ass summer weights
When you're doing something well, keep doing it, right? Michael Paradise knows his customer and market so well and really lives his brand, The Stronghold. And yes, he should be in Denim Dudes, I apologise! He'll definitely be in book 2. For SS16, he has bought out some stunning seersuckers and classic chambray pants as well as an array of gorgeous lightweight scarves in a million different selvedges.
They are also damn good at a stripe and I'm loving this wide-set two piece, below. Great collection guys!
ones stroke: always killing it. this season with tassles!
I love Ones Stroke and am always interested in what they have going on for the following season. I get so much inspiration from looking at their product and this season was no different. They're not afraid to pull out some directional silhouettes and this season they adorned hems, yokes and seams with the Western fringe in indigo: genius!
This was actually a poncho, above but it was too big to photograph very well!
Above a stunning palm jacquard blazer which came with matching pants with dolphin hem: dreamy! Below I loved this take on a M65 jacket modernised with short sleeves and a dolphin hem too:
Their range of slouchy, bright-cast indigo pieces complimented the main collection brilliantly and I'm sure this is going to be a strong season for them.
Tortoise jeans: combining stunning laundry techniques with an ethical attitude
I'm really interested in Tortoise jeans and have been dying to visit their wash facilities in Los Angeles since discovering them a few seasons ago in Vegas. They own an eco-friendly set-up in downtown LA called Eco Prk (hilarious play on words!) which I wanted to visit this time but will hopefully get to do later in the year. They use various techniques in water reduction, stone wash elimination and reduced or alternative chemicals. The washes they acheive are pretty badd-ass too, as you'll see below.
I loved this modern take on repair stitch below, reminiscent of decorative sashiko yet completely contemporary. The shades of laundered indigo and white really give it a women's -focussed angle too. Tortoise is currently enjoying most success with their women's line although they do have a pretty strong mens offering too.
Poggy's world introduces United Arrows and sons
A new addition to Liberty Fairs this season was the Poggy's World section: Liberty had invited Motofumi 'Poggy' Kogi to curate an area in the show, much like Ouigi's Freedom Hall so we could all see the world of mens apparel through the eyes of this hyper stylish United Arrows buyer.
It was great to see some smaller, up and coming names and experimental brands but equally it was good to see United Arrows show their beautifully crafted denim line in a US setting. I loved everything of course.
They had a serious ecru crush going on too:
Check out the selvedge detail, the contrast white insert, the draw-cord waist on the shirt above! So great. Some pretty Japanese repair on a stunningly vintage jean below.
Last but actually probably my favorite of the show: Studio One Eighty Nine
I came across these guys three seasons ago and I love what they are doing and how they are working. If you don't know them, get to know them! Studio One Eighty Nine is a social project that represents countries all over Africa and who's symbol sums up their moto: Help me and let me help you. Set up by Rosario Dawson and Abrima Erwiah, the pair work with villages, creatives and craftsmen around the continent, helping to bring garments into Western countries. Their Ghanian indigo textiles grabbed my attention a few seasons ago and the gals had a lot more treats to show me this time.
Stay tuned for Project Las Vegas coverage within a day or two :-)