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Stories

Toronto’s Underground Music Scene

Toronto’s Underground Music Scene

Now, you might be wondering: what does music (and thus a blog post about music) have to do with denim? As it happens, music and denim actually have a long-standing history together. Jagger, John, Jackson… Some of the music industry’s biggest names are almost synonymous with the denim they wore. Some might even argue that the popularization of denim as a casual staple in the average person’s wardrobe was brought on by the commercialization of these musical giants. Besides, our staff here have lives and passions outside of just denim… we promise.  A scene that I’ve personally been involved with for the last decade of my life has been the punk/hardcore scene. Punk dates back to the 70s and 80s with bands like Sex Pistols and The Clash, sure, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a thriving subculture today. In major cities all over the world, there are groups of young people expressing their frustrations, both political and personal, through fringe genres like punk and hardcore. After all, punk music started out as a symbol of rebellion… kind of like denim, no? Denim became a symbol of rebellion in the 50s and 60s because of its association with the American […]

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Breaking in Raw Denim – Naked & Famous Classics

Breaking in Raw Denim – Naked & Famous Classics

Editor’s Note: The following is a part of our Denim Diaries project – a deep dive into process of breaking in raw denim. So far in this series, we have explored the journey of a pair of raw jeans from initial discomfort to gradual acceptance. In this piece, Jen Hughes — one of our denim guinea pigs — gives us a blow-by-blow account of her first 2 weeks in her Naked & Famous Classic 11oz Selvedge. Day One I loved the fit. The look was excellent, and I was optimistic about breaking in my first pair raw jeans. However, about two hours in I was starting to regret my decision. I don’t often use the word hate, but I genuinely hated that I couldn’t take the jeans off until work was done. Furthermore, I could barely bend over, they were strangely itchy (!?) and man did they pinch my thighs. They even left (small but present nonetheless) bruises around my hips. “Why?” I asked myself, “why on earth would a person intentionally cause themselves so much discomfort for a pair of jeans?!”. Then I remembered the pair of heels that I can’t walk two blocks in without bleeding. Oh, right. Day […]

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Hemming Jeans… Into Shorts

Hemming Jeans… Into Shorts

By now you know that we love jeans. What can we say… they’re the perfect pant. Still, we are willing to concede that jeans are not — I repeat, are not — appropriate for every occasion. Only the strongest willed denim enthusiasts rock their jeans in 30+ degree (celsius) heat. And that’s where shorts come in handy! There are plenty of great shorts on the market (check out some from our online inventory if you’re curious), but sometimes what’s available just doesn’t cut it. The Plan The plan here is simple: we hem a pair of jeans to about a 7″ inseam so they effectively turn into shorts. John picked out a pair of Neuw Studio Pants. Below you’ll see him wearing them pre-hem. John opted for the Neuw Studio Pants for their wash and fit. He wanted his (soon-to-be) pair of shorts to end just above the knee with a finished hem. So, we marked and measured and then our tailor Kevin got to work using our Union Special. Not 20 minutes later and the jeans had become shorts! Take a look at the final product below. And there you have it. We love that something as simple as […]

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Breaking in Denim – N&F Women’s Jeans

Breaking in Denim – N&F Women’s Jeans

Welcome to our second instalment of Denim Diaries. In this series, we explore the break in process of 6 pairs of Naked & Famous Women’s Jeans. In our last article, we met Jen, Zoe and Montana and introduced the three Naked & Famous jeans they started wearing: the Classic, High Skinny and Max. Finally, after 6 weeks of wear, our denim guinea pigs are ready to report on how their opinions of these jeans have changed (if at all) in the process of breaking them in. “They’ve essentially just been customized to my body. It’s as though they’ve become second skins.” Zoe Anyone who has broken in raw denim before can tell you that six weeks is more than enough time to witness substantial change in the denim. So we figured now would be as good a time as any to evaluate how these jeans have changed since day one. All three women are reporting that their jeans feel more comfortable and look better now, and Jen and Zoe have both described their jeans as a “second skin.” Their original ratings of these jeans are summarized below, alongside their current ratings. Original Ratings Jean Fit Style Comfort Classic 11oz Selvedge […]

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Dutil Stories: Meet Abba

Dutil Stories: Meet Abba

This blog post marks the start of a new series of posts we’ll be hosting on our blog — Dutil Stories. Denim is fascinating in its own right. A person could spend hours and hours online familiarizing themselves with manufacturing information, product knowledge and history alone. We believe, however, that denim is most interesting when it intersects with the lives of people. Dutil Stories is our effort to investigate these intersections and give explanation to the phenomena of denim through the lives of its owners and lovers. Which brings us to our first entry. Meet Abba. A Background Abba’s originally from Saskatchewan. Well, she’s originally originally from Sudan, Africa — at the age of three her family immigrated to Saskatchewan, Canada. Youngest of eight kids, Abba recalls the distinct freedom that came with being the ‘baby’. She’d pick out bold outfits to wear starting at a young age as a way of carving a pathway unlike her older siblings’. Little did she know that carving out pathways of her own would become a theme throughout her life. At the age of eight, Abba’s mother taught her how to sew. Abba’s mother learned to sew from her mother, and so an […]

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Denim 101 – The Ultimate Denim Guide

Denim 101 – The Ultimate Denim Guide

Trust us — we know how strange ‘Denim 101’ sounds. There’s a compendium for jeans? In fact, there is! Or at least, there should be. There’s a lot to know about denim, after all; whether it be denim history, brand knowledge, maintenance or sizing, this guide should have you well on your way to knowing and loving denim about as much as we do! The following are answers to the questions we get asked most frequently. How do I take care of my denim? This is a big question, and one which we will break up and answer in smaller slices below, but here’s the short answer: wear, wash, repair, repeat. There’s no need to throw your jeans in the freezer or wash them in the ocean. Myths busted. Instead, we recommend you wash your jeans when they need washing (more on that below), and then repair them when rips and tears appear. In our opinion, there’s nothing better than a well worn and loved pair of jeans. And the only way to get there is with lots of wears and repairs. Fortunately, Dutil offers repair services. How (often) should I wash my raw denim? There’s two questions here: first, […]

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Outland Denim: A Brand on a Mission

Outland Denim: A Brand on a Mission

Aussie brand Outland marries quality production with ethical practices. This eco-friendly, ethical denim brand began with an important mission: create jeans that can be a source of good in the world. To accomplish this mission, Outland hires and trains women transitioning out of sex trafficking in Cambodia to produce their jeans. Indeed, founder James Bartle developed a model of sustainable production that allowed him to impart his seamstresses with the ability to change their future and escape the cycle of poverty through fair wages, educational programs and reliable employment. There’s no doubting that they deserve their A+ score in an external audit by the World Aid Ethical Fashion Report. Outland Denim is breaking the typical production process by using only suppliers meeting their strict criteria for sustainability. Outland uses only 100% organic cotton and vegetable derived dyes. Their production uses the newest technology for reducing water and carbon emissions in their stand-alone production house. In fact, they evaluate every step of their supply chain to make sure that it meets the same #ZeroExploitation standards. Outland Denim Fits Although Outland focuses on ethical production and sustainable denim, fit is never compromised. In fact, each fit is expertly designed with an ideal […]

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Naked & Famous Women’s Jeans: First Impressions

Naked & Famous Women’s Jeans: First Impressions

Welcome to Denim Diaries. In this series, we explore the break in process of 6 pairs of Naked & Famous Women’s Jeans. Jen from Vancouver, Zoe from Toronto and Montana from Calgary all weigh in on their first impressions of the Naked & Famous Classic, High Skinny and Max. After 2 weeks of heavy wear, our denim guinea pigs are here to report their initial thoughts on the fits and wear in process of these jeans. The N&F Classic Our brave volunteers all gravitated towards the Naked & Famous Classic, and we can see why. This super high rise, wide leg jean is a fit straight out of the 70s. Zoe chose the Indigo Duck Canvas while Montana and Jen opted for the 11oz Stretch Selvedge, a raw denim fabric that fades beautifully. Like all Naked & Famous’s jeans, both fabrics are made in Japan. Q: What do you like best about the N&F Classic? Jen: I like that the fit is different than anything I’ve owned previously and that they’re raw! They’re my first pair of raw denim. Jen’s Rating of the Classic 11oz Selvedge: Fit: 7, Style: 7, Comfort: 2 Zoe: I love the fit of these. They’re […]

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Rag & Bone Fit 2 – Tonal Rinse Review

Rag & Bone Fit 2 – Tonal Rinse Review

Started in New York in 2002, Rag & Bone has become recognized for the way it melds British heritage with American edge and innovation. The importance of quality, expert craftsmanship and attention to detail is informed by the brand’s core philosophies. And their products speak these philosophies for themselves. Now, the brand has perfected the art of denim manufacturing and carries a number of different fits and styles for Men and Women. The Rag & Bone Fit 2 embodies everything the brand has built and stands for today. Rag & Bone Fit 2 – The Fit: The Fit 2 is a great option for those looking for an updated interpretation of the classic ‘slim-straight’ jean. The front rise sits nicely on the hips, while the back rise is just high enough to avoid showing too much skin when you bend over or crouch down. Additionally, there is a comfortable amount of room in the top block of the jean (from the front rise to the knee), and a slight taper in the bottom block (from the knee to the ankle). Finally, this jean comes in a 34″ which comes in handy for those who need it. For those who don’t, […]

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Naked & Famous Women’s Jeans: Denim Diaries

Naked & Famous Women’s Jeans: Denim Diaries

The Challenge with Naked & Famous Women’s Jeans When it comes to denim fabrics, we consider ourselves relatively impartial. Stretch denim? Love it. Raw, Japanese Selvedge? We’re feeling it. High rise, low rise – it doesn’t matter to us. Every jean has a place in our heart. However, we’ve noticed a trend time and time again: the most beautiful, comfortable jeans often start off the most uncomfortable. The same thick fabrics and 98 – 100% cotton blends that lend durability and beautiful fades to a jean are the same features that make them so dang uncomfortable – at least at first. Naked & Famous Women’s Jeans are the perfect embodiment of this denim experience. Longtime Dutil Blog readers will remember the Weathered Project – the 18-month journey of the life of 3 pairs of raw denim. We challenged ourselves to prove once and for all that the initial discomfort of breaking in uncomfortable jeans is worthwhile, and moreover, that you’ll end up with a pair of jeans that make the whole experience worthwhile. What we hope to do here is no different. 6 Jeans. 3 Women. 1 Experiment. Our approach is scientific. Well, as scientific as it can be. We […]

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