Welcome to the first in a series of posts which we will be doing to focus on lesser known, under promoted brands. Some weeks ago I posted an offer on Denim HQ and social media that if any denim or work wear company out there wanted help to expose their products, a platform to introduce themselves, and an honest appraisal of their wares on a public platform then they could get in touch, and we will provide them with this. We will do this by asking them a series of questions which are important to denim enthusiasts, which we will publish in interview format, followed by a review of one or two of their products from a design, fit and quality point of view.
Since making this offer we have been contacted by quite a few brands, start ups and even more established brands who are interested in either getting a little more exposure, or supporting DHQ by subjecting their wares to our scrutiny, a sure sign of confidence in what they do. The first brand to actually follow through though, by responding to our questions, providing information and dispatching samples for us to paw over are Simple Living, High Thinking Jeans, a brand with its inspiration taken more modern sources than we are perhaps used to in the denim scene, and who like to do things their own way.
SLHT Jeans do a few things which are well…..kryptonite to 99% of denim enthusiasts. They offer a wide range of pre washed and pre distressed jeans which are completely not my cup of tea, though I appreciate that there is a market for such things, however they also offer a range of raw denim jeans made with modern details, at a reasonable price and with the focus being totally on the high end denim market, this is what we’re here to look at.
To give us an introduction to the brand I spoke with owner Aman Behl and posed a series of questions which I think give us a nice introduction to what SLHT are trying to achieve in the raw market.
DHQ: Where do you source your denim?
Aman SLHT: All our selvage denim is sourced from a mill in Zhonghsan, China. Please note we do not buy any stock fabric, the mill produces it in smaller lots of 500-100 yards depending on our requirements.
DHQ: Where do you manufacture?
Aman SLHT: We have our own sample room, where we do the all the developments, embroidery’s and do the website orders..we have tied up with a couple of small manufactures who do our orders. We manufacture in China.
DHQ: What weight is your denim?
Aman SLHT: The weight is normally 12 and a half oz.
DHQ: Do you have any special features which make your raw jeans unique or different?
Aman SLHT: We started off in the beginning of last year and after a few months realized that we don’t have any raw denim..for a lot of people its about the wash of the jean, but the real denim enthusiast will always prefer raw denim as it can be worn everyday and becomes second skin. I mean what other garment can you wear regularly, guess raw denim is like wine, it ages with time..we advise people to wash our raw denim with just a rinse wash after a couple of months as it begins to take shape..it took us a sometime to design the line, we try a lot of different embroidery’s on back pocket and the pocketing in front (once you receive the sample, you’ll know) and the front coin pocket can accommodate your iphone etc etc..its little details like that that we like to try out.
DHQ: What are your inspirations?
Aman SLHT: One of the main reasons we started was that we found all the high end jeans were either being made in LA or Japan and ridiculously priced with fabric coming from Cone mills or Kukori mills.. we wanted to start a premium jeans made in China..initially we got a lot of rejections, as no one had heard of us..but then we started sending samples to different stores and now have started receiving small test orders as people liked the designs and our fits. Also, we are extremely passionate about our jeans.
DHQ: Who do you see as your customers/ where is your market?
Aman SLHT: We are just going to ship our test orders to a store in Canada and Malaysia and are in discussion with many many other companies around the world.
DHQ: What are the future plans for your brand?
Aman SLHT: We would like to take one step at a time and grow gradually.
As many of us realise, in todays denim market “Made In China” does not necessarily mean “Made Without Ethics”, and SLHT Jeans are a company who ensure the ethical nature of their supply chain, just as I have seen first hand from a few other Asian denim companies who manufacture outside of the usual chosen lands of Japan and the USA. If I am totally honest, much of what SLHT jeans manufacture is not to my taste, this is not a bad thing really as I have very distinct tastes as I am sure do many others. I have a huge amount of respect for ANY brand out there who are actually making jeans the right way, whether they are to your taste or not the very fact that these guys have taken the time and made the investment to bring their vision to life is worthy of acknowledgement and respect. I think that SLHT with probably have a more broad appeal to younger guys looking to get into the raw denim scene, but not feeling the repro cuts and vintage details that us older guys seem to love so much.
I have a couple of sample pairs of SLHT jeans incoming and will be reviewing them in an upcoming piece soon.
SLHT Jeans are available at selected retailers in Canada and Malaysia, and through their own web store at http://www.slhtjeans.com