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> The Raw Selvedge Denim Thread, Version 4

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TSGrimm
post Feb 27 2011, 01:32 PM, updated 8y ago

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What is Selvedge (Salvage) denim?

Selvedge denim is a particular type of denim which is produced on vintage shuttle looms which boasts a firm natural edge that does not unravel. The word "selvedge" comes from the phrase "self-edge", the natural edge of a roll of fabric. As applied to denim, it means that which is made on old-style shuttle looms (source: Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denim).

Shuttle looms are antique tools that were outdated by newer technologies in the 1950′s. Jeans today are mostly made on projectile looms which are more cost efficient for manufacturers. But during the mid to late 50's, as a response to increased demand for jeans in the west, American denim manufacturers replaced the old shuttle style looms with modern projectile looms. The new looms produced fabric faster and wider and were a more commercial approach to producing jeans in large quantities.

However, the trade-off was a lower quality and strength of material which was passed on to the end consumer, as well as a less personalized clothing item. As the major players like Levi’s and Lee upgraded their looms in the 1960's, these old-style looms eventually ended up in Japan, where the best selvedge denim is still made today.

For better clarification regarding the differences between the old school shuttle looms and the more commercial projectile looms,

» Click to show Spoiler - click again to hide... «


The selvedge edge is usually stitched with colored thread: green, white, brown, yellow, and red (red is the most common). Fabric mills used these colors to differentiate between fabrics.

user posted image
A silver threaded selvedge, probably from a pair of black Dior Homme 19cms

user posted image
Beautiful teal and yellow threaded selvedge

user posted image
Multi-colored selvedge

user posted image
Red selvegde in Japanese 14oz Denim Uniqlo Selvedge Jeans.
This is the most common type of selvedge you will get to see nowadays. This also represents Levis' trademark selvedge jeans back in the days where the color of the thread (Levis used red) was closely associated with certain brands. The above colored selvedges are extremely rare and almost cannot be obtained in this part of the world.

Selvedge denim is one of the finest denims that can be used in jeans production today and the price indeed reflects that. The weaving process takes longer to complete but achieves a tightly woven, heavier weight fabric that is built to last. In fact, one of the ways to distinguish vintage jeans of the past is by looking for this trademark characteristic (source: http://www.popculturepost.com/2007/05/22/w...elvedge-denim/).

What is Raw denim?

Raw or Dry denim refers to denim which has not been washed after the dying process during production. The indigo which is dyed onto the jeans is presented in a virgin state, hence dry or raw. The process of wear and tear over time when denim is worn, such as stretching at the knee and upper thighs (whiskers), the frequent friction at the bottom of both the denim (near the ankles) due to walking, the creases behind the knees (honeycombs), and any other areas which receive the most stress such as a wallet in a very tight back pocket, will encourage the indigo to fade faster than other general areas of the jeans. This creates very personalized fades, depending on what you keep in your pockets, how you wear your jeans and the activities you do with your jeans on.

After about a year of wearing, without any washes, the first wash will produce something extremely personal to the user. The pair of raw denim, over the months and years of wear, has faded into something beautiful. Your pair of jeans has now become like a close friend. A second skin over your lower body.

user posted image
My Imperial Dukes in a raw state (source: www.SelfEdge.com)

user posted image
Dior Homme honeycombs

user posted image
Heavy cell-phone fadings and some good whiskers (source: MyNudies.com)

user posted image
The ultimate end look we all strive for.

Now lets have an insight on Japanese denim and why it is revered in the world of indigo.

The Japanese denim industry is revered the world over for its innovativeness and its capability to set trends in the denim industry.
It would be nice to have a look at some facts and figures relating to the Japanese Denim Industry.
Denim Exports : 2006 about 56 million sq mtrs.
2007(till march) about 15 million sq mtrs.
Jeans :80 million pairs (approx) produced in Japan p.a
:20 million pairs(approx) imported p.a
Export markets : China,Hongkong, US, Vietnam and Italy.

Main Denim producing areas in Japan : The Hiroshima perfecture, The Okayama perfecture and the Mihara Area.

DENIM MILLS

KAIHARA DENIM
Produces about 36 million sq mtrs of denim p.a
Exports about 60% of production.
Offer about 600-900 items to buyers every year
Investment since 1970 – about USD 500 million.
More than 300 looms at six mills.
Strengths : Superior cotton mix and unique Dyeing process.
Kaihara has no plans to go overseas for production as they are quite comfortable in Japan…This shows their belief in their own capability to be highly innovative

KURABO INDUSTRIES

Currently focusing very much on Stretch fibres and are looking at
advanced versions of stretch denim by using XLA stretch yarn,Xfit
lycra and T400. This is to take advantage of the Skinny Jeans
fashion that is currently still strong.
Developments 2006-08 : Emphasizing on the Ocean BLue colors under the Ultra Marine
Blue Brand name.
:’Wave’ – A line developed from a specially designed slub yarn .
:’Air Spinner’ – third line that features very soft denim.

NISSHINBO INDUSTRIES

Capacity : About 12 million sq mtrs p.a
Developments : As per the marketing manager of Nisshinbo – ‘Masanharu Tanaka’
the NEW TREND would be a return towards NATURAL LOOKS. This
would mean that innovative looks using Indigo and other yarn
dyeing material.
:Liquid Ammonia Treatment: Nisshinbo is also know for the
development of the liquid ammonia treatment of Denim Fabric. The
denim fabric is dipped in liquid ammonia (about -40 degrees C)
which enables it to regain its original shape , thus giving back
natural softness to the fibre. One of its five ammonia treatment
plant is used for treating Denims.

Other developments in the Japanese denim Industry :
The DUCK TEXTILE CO. has introduced a JERSEY DENIM - a denim made of knit fabric. This fabric looks like woven fabric but has the qualities of the knit fabric.
Another development doing the rounds in the Japanese Denim Industry is the effort to keep the core of the cotton yarn undyed .. Though this normally happens in the Rope Dyeing method, but the effort is to have much more undyed portion through HAND DYEING which will give very good after washing effects…

source: http://denimiscool.wordpress.com/category/japanese-denim/

More content coming up

-Known brands and what each is famous for [Tripleworks - http://blueowlworkshop.blogspot.com/search.../Triple%20Works]
-Lesser known brands.
-Washing discussion.
-Sizing discussion.
-Selected pictures to form our LYN member's fades and fit pics archive.

Link to previous thread, v3 - http://forum.lowyat.net/topic/874917

Denim Wall of Fades 2010 Contest, Jakarta, Indonesia - Click here for sexcitement

This post has been edited by Grimm: Jun 20 2011, 12:26 PM
rubrubrub
post Feb 27 2011, 01:37 PM

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how much does a selvegde normally cost?
TSGrimm
post Feb 27 2011, 01:41 PM

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Uniqlo selvedge jeans can start at MYR 250.
Dior Homme silver selvedge (which are no longer produced) can go up to MYR 1,800.

It really depends on what you're looking for. Asking how much do they cost is really silly. What matters to us, is the qualities of different makes of denim.
kotmj
post Feb 27 2011, 01:50 PM

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Uniqlo raw seldge is RM169.

Do any of you still think selvedge denim is produced on vintage shuttle looms? The whole world is wearing selvedge now, you almost cannot sell regular jeans anymore and do you really think there is that many vintage shuttle looms to go about? Not to mention the low rate of production would mean nobody could produce enough of it, and these machines would need replacement parts like nothing else because of their age and 3 shifts/day production.

P.S. Don't argue with me about machines.
g3n0c|d3
post Feb 27 2011, 02:08 PM

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QUOTE(kotmj @ Feb 27 2011, 01:50 PM)
Uniqlo raw seldge is RM169.

Do any of you still think selvedge denim is produced on vintage shuttle looms? The whole world is wearing selvedge now, you almost cannot sell regular jeans anymore and do you really think there is that many vintage shuttle looms to go about? Not to mention the low rate of production would mean nobody could produce enough of it, and these machines would need replacement parts like nothing else because of their age and 3 shifts/day production.

P.S. Don't argue with me about machines.
*
Yup. It still is. Thats why its a bit more expensive than regular projectile denim. Vintage shuttle looms is one thing but i guess if u can make the shuttle looms on the 30s, why not in the 2011? U can create machines which resemble old style shuttle looms with todays technology no doubt. Correct me if im wrong here then.

Anyways
QUOTE
The shuttle loom produces selvedge denim as the weft (horizontal thread) is weaved back and forth continuously in a loop, the full length of the machine. When the weft reaches the edge of the machine, it loops back in and starts the process all over again, creating a closed selvedge edge. In contrast, modern projectile loom produces open edges that need to be stitched together, as the weft is weaved only one way (not in a loop).


That is what selvedge is all about. For me that is

This post has been edited by g3n0c|d3: Feb 27 2011, 02:12 PM
TSGrimm
post Feb 27 2011, 09:04 PM

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But certain makers still do stick to their heritage. I know the more common massed produced ones like Nudies and Uniqlo might not, but when you look at Iron Heart, Sugar Cane, Pure Blue Japan, Studio D'Artisan, Full Count, Samurai, The Flat Head, Momotaro, Triple Works, and various other japanese brands that we are not exposed to.

I really wonder though, how all the shuttle looms ended up in Japan. They bought all of them up from the Americans or what...

they seriously do them in small quantities. Even if you have the dough to order them online, chances are, the stock count would only be 0 or 1 or 2. I have never seen any of them having more than 2 pieces of inventory for their online store. I am rather sure they still do use the vintage looms.

http://blueowlworkshop.blogspot.com/2011/0...to-produce.html

A video as well.

http://blueowlworkshop.blogspot.com/2011/0...edge-denim.html

Moar on selvedge denim

http://www.contextclothing.com/support/selvage_denim.php

Traditionally the denim made on the Shuttle Looms was so narrow that about 3 yards were required to make a jeans. To maximize fabric consumption, the jeans makers used the Selvedge also which can be seen when the Jeans is turned up.The color of the thread in the Selvedge was used to differentiate between fabrics. True vintage jeans can be recognised by the Selvedge thread.

Traditionally, American denim was considered superior. However, the Americans replaced all their Shuttle Looms by faster looms (projectile looms). Many of these looms were bought by Japanese who felt that there was a market for traditional denim. And when the Premium Denim craze began after 2000, many jeans manufacturers introduced jeans made from Shuttle looms and Quality Dyeing.

Quality Dyeing

Quality Dyeing is Indigo Dyeing done using Loop Dyeing machines – which are themselves rare and vintage machines. The rope of cotton yarn goes through a vat of Indigo and then is taken to the ROOF of the factory where it is allowed to oxidize and then brought back to dip. Some companies do as many as 30 DIPS creating a rich blue Indigo character.
Another traditional thing that goes in the process of creating a Traditional Premium Denim is the chain stitch at the leg opening – which gives a thick stitch line at the hem.

Denim produced on shuttle looms is naturally irregular . Accompanied with the additional details in dyeing and stitching, it produces a unique product and as the Jeans age, they produce a unique pattern. Like Fine Wood, Selvage denim will become more beautiful with age and acquire a patina which is impossible to create artificially.
Many of the japanese denim brands are using selvedge denim. The most famous of them WAS Evisu. Their HERITAGE Collection is made entirely of selvedge denim only , produced on 30" looms and dyed by LOOP Dyeing method. With a minimum of 16 dips, they go up to 30 dips . For chainstitching, they use the ‘Union Special Machines’ which are considered to be the ‘ROLLS ROYCE’ of stitching machines in 1950s.

source: http://denimiscool.wordpress.com/category/japanese-denim/

This post has been edited by Grimm: Mar 2 2011, 04:28 PM
kuzgo
post Feb 27 2011, 10:12 PM

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Any idea what these 'vintage looms' look like? I saw pictures from when some of the sufu members visited Haraki-san. Them machines look mighty modern to me.
treflip
post Feb 28 2011, 12:43 AM

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new thread!! hehehe
irmond
post Feb 28 2011, 06:36 AM

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user posted image
what do you guys called this?
Raw denim selvedge jeans?
71ers
post Feb 28 2011, 08:32 AM

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looks raw to me and has that selvedge edge.
kuzgo
post Feb 28 2011, 10:10 AM

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QUOTE(irmond @ Feb 28 2011, 06:36 AM)
user posted image
what do you guys called this?
Raw denim selvedge jeans?
*
We call those 'Evisu'. tongue.gif
silverstan
post Feb 28 2011, 03:15 PM

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fashion = you pay for the brand. tongue.gif






TSGrimm
post Feb 28 2011, 03:22 PM

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The TOYODA shuttle loom

user posted image
LAYANGLAYANG
post Feb 28 2011, 07:23 PM

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nice, putting this thread up, idiot like me can learn something here.
irmond
post Mar 1 2011, 04:20 AM

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QUOTE(kuzgo @ Feb 28 2011, 10:10 AM)
We call those 'Evisu'.  tongue.gif
*

EvisU is the brand.
so those torn jeans. Is called washed denim?

pengejar
post Mar 1 2011, 04:51 AM

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I found out Raw Evisu is really hard to break in. 2-3years breakin Evisu equal to half year for brand like nudie, apc.

*This based on International Evisu, still can't get my hand on Made in Japan Evisu, really adore Lot 2000 No.1 Special.

Btw, this thread for raw selvage community, or, raw or selvage or both community?


Added on March 1, 2011, 4:54 amI'm saving for Nudie Dry Selvage Grim Tim and Evisu Japan No.1 Lot 2000 without paint at back pocket.

This post has been edited by pengejar: Mar 1 2011, 04:54 AM
Balaclava
post Mar 1 2011, 05:20 AM

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Raw and Selvages. But occasionally, talks regarding denim in general just comes in so there's no restriction to it.
Xp3rT
post Mar 1 2011, 07:43 AM

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most of raw jeans are selvages?
pengejar
post Mar 1 2011, 08:15 AM

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QUOTE(Xp3rT @ Mar 1 2011, 07:43 AM)
most of raw jeans are selvages?
*
Used to, but not really. Some new western companies produce raw jeans but not selvage.
Same goes to selvage, not all selvage jeans are raw.
Example Evisu, they got raw selvage and washed selvage. And also Nudie, they got dry(raw) selvage, selvage lab(washed/pre-breakin), and also normal jeans.
TSGrimm
post Mar 1 2011, 08:46 PM

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Raws and selvedges are two different things. Check out the explanations on the first post. Although most selvedges were raws, non-selvedge raw jeans are becoming more and more popular.

Examples:

Nudies, Cheap Mondays, Acne, Dr Denim. They prodcue a LOT of batches that are raw (unwashed) but are not selvedge denim and don't have the selvedge strip either.


Added on March 1, 2011, 8:47 pm
QUOTE(irmond @ Mar 1 2011, 04:20 AM)
EvisU is the brand.
so those torn jeans. Is called washed denim?
*
Yes, they are washed. Purposely broken, beaten, torn and stone washed to death.

This post has been edited by Grimm: Mar 1 2011, 08:47 PM

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