Levi Strauss wouldn’t recognize these jeans.
Denim mills bringing their collections to BPD Denim Expo in New York City this week, were featuring anything but basic jeans and probably nothing for the mainstream store or consumer.
Think jeans for running, clubbing, doing yoga, going back to the future or saving the environment.
“BPD is a show for the boutique store and customer that wants what’s next, what’s on the edge,” said Bill Curtain, owner of BPD Washhouse and BPD Denim Expo.
Artistic Milliners was showing a divergent series of collections, all with a purpose other than being just another pair of standard jeans.
Its Crystal Clear line, produced in collaboration with the G-Star jeans brand and dye specialist Dystar is Cradle to Cradle Gold Certified and uses Gotts certified organic cotton. Ebru Ozaydin, director of sales and marketing at Pakistan-based Artistic Milliners, said Crystal Clear uses 70 percent fewer chemicals, no salt and hydro-free dyeing, which itself uses 20 percent less water.
“Crystal Clear technology offers brilliant indigo shades and is applicable to both indigo and sulphur dyeing,” Ozaydin said. “It also lowers the effluent and water discharge from indigo dyeing machines. We’re very proud of the collection. It’s sustainable but also comfortable.”
Artistic’s Hour Glass line, made of mono and bi-stretch fabrics, was developed for figure-enhancing fits “that gracefully define the body and shape,” Ozaydin said. “It’s meant to show the natural beauty of a woman’s body. The fabrics feature 30 to 60 percent elasticity.”
Also new is Artistic’s Matcha collection featuring shades of vibrant blue-green casts inspired by Japanese green leaf tea. Ozaydin said the company calls it “Generation M,” for millennials, and it, too, consists of at least 1 percent or 2 percent elasticity.
“We make capsule collections based on research and development and working with customers on special products,” said Muhammad Ali, general manager for marketing at Pakistan’s Indigo Textile. “We will double our capacity this year to produce 2.6 million meters of fabric.”
Among the wide range of offerings Indigo brought to the show was a group called “Phantom,” featuring colored denim with a “high-low effect.”
A line called “Retro-Relived” includes evocative styles that bring back the vintage-inspired looks from the 1980s and ’90s, but with a modern technological edge for greater comfort and fit.
The Fifth Element is a ground-breaking collection by Indigo that focuses on the five fabrics requirements for women’s denim–comfort, fit, stretch, silhouette and color. Curated from five different yarn technologies combined, the range is meant to have a superior finish and quality.
Fit by Indigo also set itself apart with a group of contoured jeggings made with stocking-stretch fabric for a skintight look.
At Kipas Textiles, sales manager Omer Faruk Aksoy said a key range was what the Turkish mill was calling “high-power stretch concept.” The patent pending material combined high stretch with softness made from rope-dyed yarns.
Aksoy said he expects a grayish steel color to be a big draw for Spring 2019. Cotton and linen jeans fit with a natural dye that allows for an unusual color array, also made an appearance.
“We provide our customers with a wide range of products that can handle up to 300 different colors in our rope dyeing and slasher production lines, work with different mixes, and apply all kinds of finishing and coating processes in our factory with an annual capacity of 30 million,” he said. “In addition, we are able to provide privileged services to our customers with the help of our in-house R&D center.”
Turkish mill Calik Denim’s Red Carpet line consists of shiny, PFD denim that’s washable and meant to look like jeans only by silhouette. Calik’s Circular Elastech group features bi-stretch using Lycra dualFX technology in the weft and warp that prevents bagging, shrinkage and shape retention and is meant for performance and comfort, a company representative said.
The mill’s Oxygene line is the company’s sustainable offering, with laser and ozone washes replacing traditional washing, resulting in savings on energy, water and chemicals.
The largest grouping is the Fly Jean, a lightweight series of active-leisurewear hybrids. The hyper-stretch Fly-skin uses graded indigos, with laser-cut, hole-punch air vents. Linear rubber tapes contour and streamline the calves for an active mode. The Fly-girl ruffle jean has engineered volant floats around the hips with a body-slimming fit accentuated by tow tones in the streamlining panel edged with contrasting piping.