About Japan Blue Jeans
Weave - Our Commitment to Vintage Shuttle Looms
The selvedge strip in vintage jeans is proof that the fabric has been woven on vintage shuttle looms.
In order to weave denim that is characterized by its natural and beautiful colors – without damaging the structure of the cotton –, we stick to old-fashioned shuttle looms that can weave with ultimate low tension and at an incredibly slow speed. JAPAN BLUE JEANS continues to use these authentic shuttle looms which have vanished from today’s mass production of denim – the fast fashion industry only care of quantity, not quality. We are operating ten "TOYODA" automatic looms, called “GL-9“, which were actually manufactured here in Japan when denim was first introduced to our domestic market in our very own denim-mill.
These vintage shuttle looms have completely disappeared in modern times – you couldn’t buy a complete loom if you wanted to, only spare parts. Our denim fabric is woven over time while our dedicated craftsmen keep carefully repairing the looms which are not just machines for them but friends you look after. This way we are able to create unique fabrics with a lot of texture and character here in JAPAN BLUE JEANS. We don’t make flat and boring denim, we celebrate the unevenness of our denim.
Cotton – The Key to Craft a Great Fabric
As a textile manufacturer, we are researching and developing to present you with the best and most interesting fabrics. And we do this from the ground up. We start by selecting the best quality cotton which we source from all over the world. We then blend various cotton and spin yarns that highlight the natural texture of the cotton we use. It is our attention to the smallest detail of the cotton that allows us to create fabrics that are great from the start but will only get better with age.
Spinning – From Cotton to Yarn
We spin the yarn that really highlights the nature of the carefully selected cotton. The cotton itself has so much character but it often gets lost in the process of denim making. We work hard to maintain it. We deliberately adjust the rotational speed of our machines to keep the texture and uneven shape of the cotton threads. Cotton is an agricultural crop, so the fibers are different throughout the year. Therefore, you really need to understand cotton to adjust the looms accordingly. We fine-tune our old-fashioned machinery in order to keep the texture at a constant quality. So after stabilizing the unstable cotton as much as possible, we begin the dyeing and the weaving.
Dyeing – Sticking to Rope Dyeing
For the best fading potential, it’s crucial that the core of the yarn remains white and is not penetrated by indigo. In order to achieve this, we use an indigo dyeing method called "rope dyeing" which makes it possible to dip the yarn in indigo and let it air out immediately after. That is when the indigo reacts to the oxygen and changes its color. We dip the yarn into the indigo several times to achieve a deep blue color without letting the indigo touch the core of the yarn.
We at JAPAN BLUE JEANS know that rope dyeing remains to this day on the best techniques to get amazing fades. We have experimented quite extensively with various kinds of cotton, spinning and weaving processed, to get the best yarn to be rope dyed – that results in jeans which will evolve just beautifully. As a denim manufacturer, we are always studying to improve our dyeing technology and while we work with old-fashioned machinery, we also have a passion for innovation.
Sew - We Aim to Bring Back the Feeling of Times Long Gone
We love jeans from the 1960s when denim was introduced in Japan: The unique leg-twists, the roping at the hems, and the rugged sewing. We believe that jeans that are made with old-school machinery have the best potential to evolve beautifully over time: authentic construction is the basis for authentic fades but it also means more durability for jeans – so you have more time to wear your beloved jeans.
For that very reason, the vintage sewing-machine made by "Union Special Company“, which was used in the 1960s, is indispensable for our jeans.
In the latter half of the 1970's modern Japanese sewing machines became mainstream and Union Special disappeared, but JAPAN BLUE JEANS gathered some vintage Union Specials – they were in such bad condition that we couldn’t use them. We were able to find original spare parts and restored these legendary machines to allow our skilled craftsmen to sew your jeans the original way.
JAPAN BLUE JEANS has positioned themselves to be an international brand from early stages, and are now reaping the benefits of both Western and Eastern business partners from all over the world. Through countless exhibitions and interviews, buyers from various countries that enjoy the aesthetic of European and American trends helped shape the basis for JBJ’s classic jeans silhouette, now also customized and twerked to suit the unique lifestyle of each customer. Not satisfied with dominating the Japan denim industry, JAPAN BLUE JEANS is taking the world by storm, manufacturing the best authentic jeans for the global market.