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Denim Blunders, Reflections and General Nonsense.

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1 hour ago, Cold Summer said:

Biggest surprises:

  • Warehouse in general, early on I dismissed them as a boring repro brand that made dad jeans which faded to a washed-out gray color, but fortunately this turned out to be way off base.

Way off base or you just turned into a boring, faded, washed-out grey dad so they seemed more appealing?

:D

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Oh No! I didn't see this coming...

https://auctions.yahoo.co.jp/

From Wednesday, April 6, 2022, Yahoo! JAPAN is no longer available in the EEA and the United Kingdom

Please be informed that from Wednesday, April 6, 2022, Yahoo! JAPAN’s services are no longer available to our users in the EEA (European Economic Area) and the United Kingdom, as it has been determined by Yahoo! JAPAN that providing a continuous service environment in these regions would be difficult. Please note that services listed under “Services available after Wednesday, April 6, 2022” below will continue to be available.

Please note that all Yahoo! JAPAN services are accessible after this date if access is made from Japan.

We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and thank you for your understanding.

 

Listings still work through the proxies, i suppose... Aww!

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I quite like UES flannels. They fit me well. No experience with their other stuff but will definitely still buy their shirts

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I like Ues flannel shirts a lot, but their standard shirts are cut very differently and don’t work well for me

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2 hours ago, Double 0 Soul said:

Way off base or you just turned into a boring, faded, washed-out grey dad so they seemed more appealing?

:D

The former. Early on I was more into the more aggressive fabrics that brands like PBJ, Flat Head, and Samurai were making (though this was ~10 years ago, those fabrics all seem pretty modest compared to the "trendy" heavyweight god-of-slub fabrics popular with the Reddit crowd.) I thought brands like Full Count and Warehouse were just boring, but over time they started to appeal to me not because of specific repro attributes but because I felt like they were making something close to "the platonic ideal" of a no-frills, classic-style pair of jeans. There definitely are washed-out grayish fabrics out there which I don't like much, but Warehouse's Banner denim and 14.5 oz Memphis denim are great and not really like that at all. 

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On 4/5/2022 at 12:04 PM, Broark said:

Echoing your sentiments on IH John, I used to be a big fan of their stuff (mostly shirts, I can't stand heavy weight denim). I've since sold all the IH I once owned.
Over time I became a bit disinterested in their marketing and western pricing model, and I find that their forum is just an echo chamber.
Nothing constructive is ever really said about any of their products, but I guess you shouldn't expect that in their own corner of the internet.
I haven't paid much attention to their catalog lately (so I could be off base) but it feels a little copy and paste season after season with percentage price increase sprinkled in here and there.

Also agree with your thoughts on cut being king when it comes to brand selection.
 

I still like IH fwiw. And to their credit, they’ve brought bigger sizes and cuts for us fat westerners to enjoy. Yes, the forum has its extreme fanboys but at the end of the day they’re just very enthusiastic about their clothes. Nothing wrong with that. Do I like everything they release? Of course not. But as a brand they’re more accessible and open to suggestions than most. I have quite a few UHF’s and about 6 of their jackets. I love them all. My only gripe is the price going up pretty consistently. I get that operating costs have gone up as well as the cost of materials but pretty soon it’ll only exist as a brand for the rich. 
 

I will echo the complaint about PBJ. Horrible cuts. I’ve wanted to try their jeans forever but I can never find anything suitable. Either the hems are too skinny or too wide. Or if the hem looks ok the thighs and waist is too small. Their jackets fit like crap too and I’m not crazy about their sewing standards either. The armholes on my type II are a mess compared to my IH jackets which are cleanly sewn. 

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@ColonelAngus IH is definitely more geared towards the western crowd so it’s nice that they make sizes and cuts that are more accessible. And I do like that they take suggestions about what their community wants and is interested in.
The pricing increases have been fairly dramatic over the years, even before COVID and all of the supply chain whiplashes that it has caused. And when you look at that pricing compared to JPY pricing (which hasn’t fluctuated all that much if I recall correctly) it’s all grossly more expensive than what other western retailers are selling their Japanese made product for. I know there are a lot of operational costs associated with selling in the west (I deal with this directly in my line of work, just a different industry), but the swing in pricing has been huge and most IH fans don’t really bat an eye at it.
Also I don’t want to sound like I’m claiming to know the ins and outs of their business or anything, I just know that if I was still an IH fan my wallet would be hurting.

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Posted (edited)

Like many of us who came up during the mid-late 00's, my first foray into Japanese denim was of the "obviously awesome fabric" category: Flat Head, PBJ, Samurai etc. From 2010 onwards I started gravitating towards more repro minded brands like WH and FC, which I've stuck to generally, with more focus on "independents" like Ooe from 2012 onwards. I have no disappointments, but here are some surprises that come to mind:

-I'm not the biggest fan of Warehouse's banner denim, despite being a huge fan of the brand. It's certainly capable of masterful fades, but I find the feel of the fabric itself a bit too thick and cartoonish, with stringy threads and vertical falling/striations that seem too programmed. 15th Anniversary fabric remains my favorite (for the blues!), as well as the newer dead stock blues which seem a bit more even/balanced

-Double Volante never really took off here; I remember being so blown away by Kuniyoshi-san when miz gave us a tour of his shop and all the hidden details baked in to his jeans during the Evisu tour. I guess he never truly opened up to international orders due to language limitations, but I can't think of a single broken in pair on sufu!

-Blue in Green going fashion/streetwear focused; Interesting to see many of the brands BiG fought for being dropped and picked up by Self Edge as we moved into the mid 2010's (anyone else remember all that Samurai distribution/contract drama?)

-Reddit; I've never even glanced at Reddit's raw denim scene, but I'm guessing that's where a majority of discussion lies these days? Crazy to think of kids who were literal kids during the Sufu hey days learning about Momotaro, etc. now. I get chatted up on Instagram once in a while and have to explain what sufu is/was :D

 

 

 

 

Edited by aho

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3 hours ago, Cold Summer said:

The former. Early on I was more into the more aggressive fabrics that brands like PBJ, Flat Head, and Samurai were making (though this was ~10 years ago, those fabrics all seem pretty modest compared to the "trendy" heavyweight god-of-slub fabrics popular with the Reddit crowd.) I thought brands like Full Count and Warehouse were just boring, but over time they started to appeal to me not because of specific repro attributes but because I felt like they were making something close to "the platonic ideal" of a no-frills, classic-style pair of jeans. There definitely are washed-out grayish fabrics out there which I don't like much, but Warehouse's Banner denim and 14.5 oz Memphis denim are great and not really like that at all. 

My pair is the DD1003xx, which I think is a somewhat crunchier/darker denim - the Memphis denim I believe - but tbh I got my pair because I wanted a pair that was something akin to what would eventually be...idk, something like washed out dad jeans! There are degrees here of what might be considered desirable shades of blue to white (and grey), but it's just funny how you phrased it. I figure when my kid is really wreaking havoc in a few years is when they'll get there. They're fading some with only a few months of real wear so once they're in main rotation I imagine it will comparatively quick. 

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1 hour ago, Broark said:


The pricing increases have been fairly dramatic over the years, even before COVID and all of the supply chain whiplashes that it has caused. And when you look at that pricing compared to JPY pricing (which hasn’t fluctuated all that much if I recall correctly) it’s all grossly more expensive than what other western retailers are selling their Japanese made product for. I know there are a lot of operational costs associated with selling in the west (I deal with this directly in my line of work, just a different industry), but the swing in pricing has been huge and most IH fans don’t really bat an eye at it.
Also I don’t want to sound like I’m claiming to know the ins and outs of their business or anything, I just know that if I was still an IH fan my wallet would be hurting.

I look at it this way, if IH hadn’t expanded to western markets it’s likely IHJP would’ve folded, especially when Covid hit. The price increases have been incremental with certain styles and not so much with others from what I can see. 

Personally, I’ve scaled back my purchases with IH because of the increases. I might typically buy a couple of items from the Fall drop and maybe one item from Spring, but I only bought one UHF from Fall ‘21 and I’m not buying anything from the current Spring drop. In Fall ‘21 I ended buying 2 UES flannels instead because they’re way more affordable and I like some of their flannel colorways. So it was basically a two for one type purchase. I’ll still buy IH just not as much as I use to. The irony is that I don’t need anymore UHF’s from IH, but they’re so well made and warm af that I can’t help it. UES is now my back up go to for flannels provided they have colorways I like. 

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1 hour ago, aho said:

-I'm not the biggest fan of Warehouse's banner denim, despite being a huge fan of the brand. It's certainly capable of masterful fades, but I find the feel of the fabric itself a bit too thick and cartoonish, with stringy threads and vertical falling/striations that seem too programmed. 15th Anniversary fabric remains my favorite (for the blues!), as well as the newer dead stock blues which seem a bit more even/balanced

-Blue in Green going fashion/streetwear focused; Interesting to see many of the brands BiG fought for being dropped and picked up by Self Edge as we moved into the mid 2010's (anyone else remember all that Samurai distribution/contract drama?)

Interesting, I've felt the Banner denim is a pretty traditional/conservative fabric and only my FC 1108s are more vintage-style, in my closet. The 14.5 oz is pretty aggressive in comparison and I've found it to be one of the fastest-fading fabrics I've worn. Most of the exaggerated banner denim fades I've seen appeared to come from people who constantly tumble-dried their jeans. Frequent tumble drying seems to cause a pretty wild texture on that denim, but it's easy to avoid if you don't tumble.

I've had the same thought about BiG. I think they must've seen the writing on the wall in regards to loosing dealer exclusivity for Japanese brands in the US, and decided to pivot to something else. Sure enough, all of their signature brands - Samurai, Momotaro, Full Count, Warehouse, Studio D'Artisan, Pure Blue Japan - are sold at various stores across the country.

 

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43 minutes ago, Cold Summer said:

Interesting, I've felt the Banner denim is a pretty traditional/conservative fabric and only my FC 1108s are more vintage-style, in my closet. The 14.5 oz is pretty aggressive in comparison and I've found it to be one of the fastest-fading fabrics I've worn. Most of the exaggerated banner denim fades I've seen appeared to come from people who constantly tumble-dried their jeans. Frequent tumble drying seems to cause a pretty wild texture on that denim, but it's easy to avoid if you don't tumble.

To be fair, my impression is based on the earliest iterations of the banner denim, I'm not sure if it's any different since 2014/15(?) but it wouldn't surprise me if they've regulated it a bit more. That said, I'm definitely a proponent of crinkly vintage/marble fades and I enjoy that about it :laugh2: Different strokes though, that's what makes this hobby so interesting!

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7 hours ago, aho said:


-Reddit; I've never even glanced at Reddit's raw denim scene, but I'm guessing that's where a majority of discussion lies these days? Crazy to think of kids who were literal kids during the Sufu hey days learning about Momotaro, etc. now. I get chatted up on Instagram once in a while and have to explain what sufu is/was :D
 

It's interesting that you mention that, because I'm in my 20s now and would've been a kid in the 00's. I created an account here after a few years on the raw denim sub because I feel like the way reddit works as a platform isn't really ideal for discussion, but rather for making a single post and then people can comment on it, like instagram.
I've seen and partaken in very few good discussions over there and thanks to the downvote/upvote system it's possible to say something and appear very smart even though you might be wrong and vice versa. I posted a picture of my very faded pair of 501 STFs from the 80's once and got downvoted into oblivion, obviously I was lying that these were once dark blue and anyone could tell that they were prewashed haha.
They are also pretty far behind in terms of trends over there. Taper fit, Naked & Famous and PBJ are in the top posts month after month. They got blown away when I posted a picture of my TCBs and they realised that you could actually wash a pair of jeans more than once a year.

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1 hour ago, NilsLW said:

1) … I feel like the way reddit works as a platform isn't really ideal for discussion, but rather for making a single post and then people can comment on it, like instagram.


2) …They are also pretty far behind in terms of trends over there. 

1)   It seems to me that Reddit and Instagram are convenient for those ‘in the know’ … i.e. trying to be an influencer (in whatever genre), but lack knowledge of detail. Forums by their very definition should drive discussion and education.

2)   Trends are the problem, and in many ways why influencers are so prevalent.

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That @Geeman hides his light under a bushel. Who knew about his modelling career?!

E233A45A-1DBE-4B64-9BCE-D1D041CEE1AA.jpeg

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Side hustle.....

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The love child of Dickie Davis and Joseph Stalin.

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You guys know this metallic, clicking sound you sometimes got on a top button? I guess it's about the plating gets a bit loose? What to do to stop this?

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47 minutes ago, beautiful_FrEaK said:

You guys know this metallic, clicking sound you sometimes got on a top button? I guess it's about the plating gets a bit loose? What to do to stop this?

Couldn't you use a pair of pliers or similar to 'crimp' it? Hopefully squeezing both sides gently until taught would solve the problem?

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^^Sounds like a good idea to me.. if you don't want to leave marks on the face.. maybe use a piece of denim between the pliers and the button.

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Just thinking about my (not so) recent denim wear'age theme

Devis 1946 cut (2022)

Junky 1946 cut (2019-22)

Miura 1946 cut (2016-19)

Miura 1946 cut  (2016-19)

The wilderness years....

Freewheelers 1947 cut (2013-15) which i seem to remember reading were based on a 1946 cut B)

 

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Interspersed with a liberal sprinkling of Sugar Cane ‘47s! How do the Devi’s fit?

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Indeed!

The inseam is shorter than I would usually wear but it works worn with hi’s and a micro-cuff. The waist is pretty snug after the dryer but zero issues buttoning them up. I wore them for a couple of hours last night just slouching around the house and by the time I took them off the top block was feeling great, within a few days they should be perfect, only time will tell if a 32 or 33 would have been my size but I’m more than happy with these.

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Just a brief update on the Japanese Yen. It now trades at a discount of 25% against the US dollar (USD/JPY at 125). We can expect to see USD/JPY rise to 135, and perhaps even to 145-150 as the BoJ sacrifices its currency to prop up the UST market. 

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I keep track of how badly GBP is performing against USD by window shopping vintage bike parts on ebay.com

The $800 crank i'm drooling over would have cost me £598 a couple of months ago and its gradually crept up to £613..

"Bikonomy"

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On 4/14/2022 at 10:15 AM, Double 0 Soul said:

I keep track of how badly GBP is performing against USD by window shopping vintage bike parts on ebay.com

The $800 crank i'm drooling over would have cost me £598 a couple of months ago and its gradually crept up to £613..

"Bikonomy"

Luckily the Yen is dropping hard as well...lowest since 5 years. Unfortunately (or fortunately) I don't need anything from Japan

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