Sunday, July 13, 2008

Amoskeag XX

The Amoskeag Manufacturing Company holds a legendardy-- sometimes mythic-- status in the hearts of many denimheads. It is then no wonder that a new workwear label would carry the Amoskeag name. At the height of its glory in the early twentieth century it was the largest textile mill in the world (Hareven), vertically integrated to finish fabric from cotton gingham to denim. In fact the fabric Levi Strauss and Jacob Davis used on their first blue jeans were Amoskeag denim.

Today all that is left of Amoskeag are various relics on ebay and the shell of a building that was at one time the greatest mill on the planet.

Inspired by the stories and the heritage of the mill two veterans of the Japanese textiles industry created Amoskeag XX, a workwear company that hopes to carry on the spirit of American manufacturing and what they call the "unyielding commitment to quality."

Here are some pictures of Amoskeag XX's first collection that should have been uploaded on this blog many months ago.

Balloon pants - denim used on front leg panels have higher shrinkage than denim used on back leg panels. The results after wash and shrink look surprisingly good. If anyone knows of a historical precedence for this please drop a line.

Seamless denim - the fabric was woven as a tube. Alas, due to the way garments are constructed jeans and shirts still require some seams. Very interesting concept, nonetheless. To weave this kind of denim you need to either have very good friends in the industry or own a mill.

Construction porn - hidden rivets, bucklebacks with quality hardware.

To view some very inspirational pictures taken at former Amoskeag Manufacturing Company facilities visit the Amoskeag XX website.

Amoskeag XX Website

Amoskeag: Life and Work in an American Factory-City by Tamara K. Hareven on
Tokyo Eye on Denim

Tokyo Eye is the Japanese TV show for expats that brought us special features like Maid Cafes, Gothloli, Akihabara Idols and now "Japanese Jeans...Curry Rice." The first half of the program features Blue in Green's Gordon Heffner giving the viewer a tour of Japan through the lens of a denimhead. Particularly interesting is the visit to Yoke Design whose artisans custom distress jeans using sponges and towels.

If above video does not load you can see the full denim segment on my Google Video here.

Google Video Link

Yoke Design Webpage

Blue in Green Website

Tokyo Eye Website

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