Menno van Meurs, CEO of Amsterdam-based denim retailer Tenue de Nîmes, opened his store in the middle of the 2008 recession. But despite the grim financial times, he was able to source some of the top premium denim brands and build a sense of community within the industry. More than 10 years later, it continues to stay strong.
“Jeans have the power to be relevant in any sort of time,” he said. “Although they change and get new interpretations, jeans always seem to find a new self.”
Likewise, his store has undergone a number of transformations. Originally containing mostly Japanese denim, and then evolving to embrace a heritage aesthetic, the retailer now incorporates a mix of Japanese, Scandinavian and American denim.
In 2018, Tenue de Nîmes celebrated its 10th anniversary by featuring collaborations with Vans, Red Wing Heritage, Momotaro, Converse and Levi’s. When it comes to collaborations, Van Meurs said the best ideas often begin with a cold beer and a crazy concept. While collaborators may toss around a number of different ideas, they only walk away with one—and that’s what kicks off the best projects.
“We don’t need a lot of good stuff, we need a few very great pieces—that’s what we love to specialize in,” he said.
Van Meurs’ dedication to quality and community earned him a spot on Rivet’s 50 most influential people in denim.
Click here to listen to the full conversation with Menno van Meurs.
This podcast episode is made possible by Cotton Incorporated, a not-for-profit company funded by U.S. cotton producers and importers, and whose mission is to increase the demand and profitability of cotton. Discover What Cotton Can Do.