I should begin this post with a confession. The denim which this jacket is made from is my favourite denim in the world and I say that without a hint of bias bearing in mind my commercial involvement with Trophy Clothing (I believe in full disclosure). I received my first pair of Dirt Denim jeans before any such venture was in place and even if no relationship existed my feelings would be unchanged, it is absolutely incredible denim on a scale of denim nerdiness I have not previously experienced. That might sound like I am gushing, and if it does then you might want to skip the next paragraph where things are only going to get errrrr…….gushier (!?!).
Where can I start when talking about Dirt Denim? Well to start with the basics it is a 14oz sanforised denim make in Kojima at a very small and old mill on vintage looms set to weave at an extremely low tension. What this low tension setting results in is a denim that positively oozes character from every yarn and thread of warp and weft. It has colour variation which is wild and exciting in its shades, whilst remaining subtle and natural, it has a hand feel that is both course and rough whilst remaining soft and pliable. From the surface of the denim raise peaks and canyons of threads, slubs and loom chatter, all delicately covered in a healthy but not overwhelming dusting of light cotton hairiness. If you need to imagine it, and you are familiar with some of the older denims, it is like a hybrid of the old style Samurai Jin denim and the original Oni Blue denim, if you are familiar with those two denims you will know just what level of character we are talking here.
The material would probably have been enough to convince me that this jacket is worth serious consideration alone, but the unique design is what really pushed me over the edge. The design takes elements of other jackets, and elements which are uniquely Trophy, I am a particular fan of the mirrored pocket/ inner pocket design and the riveted pleats on the back. The cut of the jacket is also extremely flattering, it is waist length and cut to give the wearer a defined shape and accentuate the broadness of shoulders, it covers and improves upon a multitude of sins and makes even stout fellows like myself appear svelte.
Moving forward to talk about how this thing wears in, the material fades to vast array of shades and tones of blue and grey all together, from the muted to the most stunningly vibrant royal and electric blues you can imagine, but it doesn’t give up its indigo easily. Stress point fade first and relatively quickly, lulling you into a false sense of security that you will be able to dominate this jacket early which is not the case. The creases which will become the combs of you arm folds wear in gradually even surprisingly until it takes your attention and you know that progress is being made.
It is probably fairly easy to tell that I absolutely love this jacket, and yet I know that some people won’t. It is uneven, out of balance and distinctive enough not to be everyone cup of tea, as we say in England. I think this is a classic jacket made from a denim that warrants years rather than months of exploration and which I look forward to enjoying long into my advancing years, and for this reason it gets my FWA stamp of approval.