Denim update: Chimala – Japanese do it better
Further to my jeans post, I tried the 701s. Oh dear oh dear, what was I thinking? Great if you’re 7 feet tall, fugeddaboudit otherwise! The denim was nice though.
On the white 501s front, I bought a pair of the 501 cropped from Next of all places (first thing I’ve ever bought from Next I think!), because they had my size and they do click and collect. I have to say, the shopping experience was smooth and painless. The jeans are OK, not particularly cropped but I’ll just turn them up like I do my other ones. These have 1% stretch, which is fine, but I wish they were 100% cotton. Call me old fashioned but to me, denim isn’t real denim when it has stretch.
Which brings me to Chimala, which is a brand I just learnt about via the Tiina the Store newsletter. I just love these Chimala ‘Monroe cut’ jeans (above) and this unisex jacket (below). An authentic, ‘worn in’ look, good ankle crop and nice ‘small batch’ artisan sensibility (it’s Japanese of course).
They’re not cheap, but these jeans won’t date so I think are worth it if you’re going to be wearing them in five years. Anyone tried them? And what jeans are y’all wearing?
WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: Chimala/ Tiina the Store
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14 May, 2019 @ 6:51 pm
I had some Chimala non selvedge denim about ten years ago. Excellent quality, even though it was not selvedge, and great detail. They were not heavily pre-faded like the ones in your article, which look over-worked to me. I believe Chimala started as a subsidiary of 45rpm.
I sold them on to another obsessive denim collector because they were slightly too small for me.
In denim I presently wear primarily Mister Freedom, Eternal 10th Anniversary, and for lounging indoors some LVC customised dungarees that have had the bib chopped off and converted into front patch pockets…… eek!
14 May, 2019 @ 10:32 pm
Those all sound good to me. I got to meet Christophe Loiron from Mister Freedom a few years ago on an LA trip. Did you ever meet him? Super-nice guy. So Chimala has been around for a while? That figures that they’re related to 45rpm, I think they get everything so right.
15 May, 2019 @ 6:17 am
No I’ve never met Mister Freedom Christophe Loiron … but he certainly seems to mostly get it right. Some amazing creations in his range of Workwear, all beautifully made by Toyo Enterprises in Japan (the same who make Sugar Cane and Buzz Rickson).
I have several Mister Freedom items – including a magnificent one-off Denim Boro Tote Bag that has a price tag tucked away in one of the pockets showing $650. I managed to snarf it for 100 quid off E-Bay :-)
15 May, 2019 @ 1:18 pm
15 May, 2019 @ 9:21 am
Struggling to find some decent jeans at the moment. Rigid/selvedge my preference. Knowing your love for decent denim I look forward to reading your posts:)
Worn various ones from Arket . Not perfect but price point OK. They really don’t maintain well after several wears and I barely wash them! Levis just don’t cut it for me. Some time ago you featured a denim brand Blackhorse Walthamstow – did you ever succumbed to purchasing a pair? Love everything on the Tiina Store and the fit on the last jeans pictured is what I am looking for.
15 May, 2019 @ 1:20 pm
It’s *such* a nightmare Paula! All the best jeans are so expensive! I haven’t washed my Arkets yet; that’s annoying that they don’t hold up well. Not ventured to Blackhorse Lane yet but you will know about it when I do!