Life should be conquered in great jeans. These are the stories of inspiring women who are doing just that-and empowering others to do the same.
BEHIND-THE-JEANS: WHO MAKES THE DENIM YOU LOVE SO MUCH?
posted on 4.18.18 by Just Black Denim
The Designers – The Vision Behind the Brand
Our design team stays busy pulling style reports and drafting new patterns, so our latest collection is as modern and beautiful as it is functional. They’re always working a season ahead, testing every design to ensure they meet Just Black Denim’s quality standards. They’re responsible for the style and fit of our denim—If you like the way you look in our jeans, show them some love!
The Craftsmen – The Expert Makers
Once a pattern has been perfected and given the green light from our design team, it’s printed and passed along to our craftsmen and craftswomen. Our cutting and sewing stations are only a few yards away from our designers’ drafting desks, so they can make changes to perfect the fit as necessary. Our cutting team begins the production process by hand-cutting every piece (pockets and belt loops included!) from a roll of raw denim fabric. The sewing team takes it from there, hand-tailoring the pieces to produce a pair of jeans with perfect fit.
The Laundry – The Artists
Raw denim has a rigid, unforgiving texture and no natural variance. To give our jeans the style and comfort you love, we drive them down the road to laundry, where they’re washed, dyed and distressed. Laundry follows instructions from our design team to create styles that are unique to the Just Black Denim line. First, the denim is washed and dried so it shrinks to its intended size. (This is why your denim still fits after you throw it in the dryer at home!) Once it’s shrunk, they add dyes to the fabric to give you dark, medium, or light washed jeans. The final step is distressing the denim. They use a machine to create holes in the fabric and add any additional fraying details by hand.
The Inspectors – The Final Say
When all of the denim details have been added at laundry, the jeans make their way back to our headquarters where a team inspects every pair by hand before filling orders and shipping them off to our retail partners! This final step ensures every pair of Just Black Denim jeans meets our quality standards.
If you own a pair of Just Black Denim jeans, you’re supporting the local Los Angeles community of modern makers. We’re proud of our process and we hope that you are too – Where your clothing comes from counts and by shopping made-in-America denim, you’re saying yes to high-quality, sustainable fashion!
Have additional questions about our process or wholesale opportunities? Drop us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org!
MEET ALLY C TRAN:
posted on 1.18.18 by Just Black Denim
What do you do to support small and ethical brands?
As an influencer, nothing gives me greater joy than partnering with conscious brands who do things differently. Getting to dialogue with these brands and wear the pieces that have had such thought and care put into them is an experience I'm so grateful for. If I'm not doing a collab and need a new garment (and I can't find it second hand), I'm saving up to buy one from a slow fashion brand I trust.
What are some of your favorite shops in Calgary, Canada?
Calgary's supply of slow fashion boutiques is quite limited right now, but as the movement gains momentum, I'm seeing more and more conscious popups and stores appearing. One of the most well-known in Calgary is Field Study, and that definitely tops my list for the most aesthetically pleasing shop! Not only is it beautifully laid out, but they only carry environmentally or socially conscious apparel and artisan-crafted goods. Purr Clothing, which has a few locations and carries Just Black Denim and a couple other slow fashion brands, is another favorite! Other than those two, I tend to stick to my favorite consignment boutiques: The Clothing Bar, Peacock Boutique, and Danielle's.
You have an amazing aesthetic from social media to your blog, where do you find inspiration from?
Thank you! I draw a lot of inspiration from Pinterest and other influencers I admire, as well as minimalist aesthetics. I am a very visual person and love browsing through different styles and absorbing the way other people see the world. That can also be a challenge, because I'm constantly falling in love with new looks and sometimes find it tricky to stay consistent. I've just accepted this as a part of my personality and allow myself to go with the flow most of the time!
What is it like to be a female fashion blogger?
I've met so many inspiring women and feel part of a beautiful community.Those aspects of it are truly so much fun. On the other hand, I continue to put countless hours of free labour into my influencing each week, which can be draining—and a little discouraging. Despite the successful social media stars who insist that anyone can make the same lucrative income with enough hard work, that's the exception to the rule; there's a lot of luck and pre-existing sociological factors involved. Starting out as a fashion blogger is a strange in-between phase where you put in hours of unpaid work in the hopes of one day making it. The passion is what drives you, but there are a lot of sacrifices involved. And influencing in a very specific niche like ethical fashion, where small brands don't have a lot of money to spend on marketing, can make it even harder. The free garments and accessories that I receive on occasion are a lovely bonus, and I'm certainly grateful for them. But it's not really an income. So, it's a complicated relationship. As long as I treat influencing as a creative hobby and focus on what I truly care about, which is educating people about the ethics behind fashion, it's a very satisfying part of my life! But if you're interested in pursuing a career in blogging, I highly recommend first reading the book '(Not) Getting Paid to Do What You Love' by social media analyst Brooke Duffy so you know what to expect.
How did you get involved in slow fashion?
Like so many of my generation who have recently decided to make the shift into slow fashion, it started with watching the documentary The True Cost (available on Netflix). That was the first time I had ever really heard about corruption in the fast fashion industry. Of course, I had heard of the term 'sweatshop' before, but I thought that was mostly a thing of the past and probably only applied to brands like Walmart. I had no idea that people were working in inhumane conditions at almost every fast fashion brand at some point in the supply chain, in order to meet the insane quotas. I think the documentary has been such a powerful tool for raising awareness about the industry because it's not just giving you dry statistics, you're also seeing the names and faces behind the garments you're wearing. You hear them tell their heartbreaking stories. And that's something that stays with you. My views as a Christian also influence the way I approach fashion, because I passionately believe that every human being has value, and that no individual should be exploited or oppressed. Not only that, but we have the task to advocate and fight for their freedom, even if it means sacrificing something on our part. It's been said that the opposite of love isn't hate, it's indifference—and in this case especially, I agree. The way I see it, we have the opportunity to trade our shopping freedom for the much more valuable freedom of other human beings. How can we not?
MEET THE GIRLS BEHIND:
posted on 3.10.17 by Just Black Denim
The four women behind GRLS STUDIO aren’t afraid of the term, “girl power.” In fact, they welcome the feminine label and seek to redefine the connotations of being girly with a part photo studio, part event space in Tacoma, Washington. A hubbub of female empowerment, GRLS STUDIO hustles to help local businesses thrive.
So, when we found out that they also geeked out over jeans, we forgot about our bad Tinder dates. Pro tip: There’s no better medicine for let-downs than making genuine connections with other women. A collaboration ensued!
They each hand-picked their favorites from our newest collection, which is inspired by days when you need some R&R. Featured here are our newest hemlines, which are all hand-sanded and hand-distressed for a cool-girl look.