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RICHARD HURST, DENIM BUYER AT NEXT ON DENIM TRENDS
DENIM INSIGHTS, HISTORY, TRENDS AND ESSENTIALS
Written by Menswear Style in Interviews on the 11th March 2015 / Richard Hurst, Denim Buyer at NEXT on Denim Trends
For this denim focussed feature we turn to NEXT’s denim buyer to fill us in on the important details and to provide us with an expert insight. Jeans have very much stood the test of time for multiple decades and we find out why, along with what type/model of jeans every man should own. We also look at the current trends and NEXT’s forthcoming Spring/Summer 2015 denim offering featuring denim engineered to last and designed to be worn.
Why do you think denim has never gone out of fashion?
"The Denim jean started as an American workwear garment due to the hardwearing properties of the fabric and reinforced copper rivets giving it extra strength. It then became a desirable fashion statement in the 1950’s thanks to stars like James Dean and Marlon Brando and is now a fashion staple in everyone’s wardrobe. The combination of colour and wash together give a very unique appearance and due to the high amount of hand processing, no two denim jeans made are ever exactly the same. Due to the natural indigo used to dye the denim fabric your jeans will become a reflection of how you live your life, from the whiskers on the back of the knee from sitting at your desk, to the wear marks on the seat from riding your bike... and the impression marks that form over time from what you carry in your pockets – denim is a truly unique fabric."
What is the one fit, wash and colour jeans that every man should own?
"On the department our go-to jean is always a Raw Denim, something we see as a staple and ensure we cover in all parts of the range every season, whether this is a Skinny with stretch or Slim Fit with a Selvedge Edge. This Dark indigo is how all denim originally starts before it is washed down to create different shades and casts. The versatile nature and characteristics of this fabric mean these jeans are easily interchanged within your wardrobe and are able to compliment any outfit."
"They look great when dressed up with a blazer, shirt and brogues but can be switched up to easily work a casual spring look of trainers and a t-shirt. However, always remember that to keep your jeans looking like new, washing your raw jeans should be a last resort. If you need to freshen them up, hang them out to air or if you are a true denim geek you can put them in your freezer for a day! If you do have to wash your jeans, always turn them inside out, wash them on the lowest temperature possible and take them out of the washing machine and hang them up as soon as the cycle finishes."
What trends should we look out for in the denim world this season?
"The exciting thing about denim this season is the variety of colours and pure indigo casts. The Solid Blacks that were key in Winter are moving into Washed Blacks for spring and into Light Greys for Summer. This can be bleached all the way down to an achromatized white shade for high summer. The newest shade this season is the heavy green cast which has been highlighted by the major fabric mills at the Denim shows. This is a good alternative to the more common indigo shades but is just as easy to wear. Brighter blues for high summer work really well with the New Wave jersey trend on Tee’s and take the vintage rip and repair washes particularly well. The 90’s bleach is also making a comeback this summer, perfect for rolling above the ankle to show off your new kicks."
Any exciting additions to the NEXT men's denim collections?
"Alongside the above trends which we have covered this season, we have seen a huge trend towards stretch fabrics. This has meant that wearing Slim and Skinny jeans has become a much more enjoyable experience. It is important to go for a denim which still has a good weight to it and a masculine characteristic on the face of the fabric. If you can tell a denim has stretch before you touch it... keep searching! We have skinny stretch fashion jeans at £25 all the way up to a true selvedge denim at £50, so there should be something for everyone in this seasons collection."