“Nobody needs fashion; everybody needs clothing.”– Allan Kemp, denim interpreter, 1921.
Then there are 1921 jeans. 1921 is something unique. A brand created simply for the joy of making jeans. Crafted by denim enthusiasts for denim enthusiasts. A timeless jeans collection for men and women. A true denimist can appreciate the quality and hand detailing that goes into a pair of 1921s. A fashion seeker will fall in love with the style and fit of the collection.
Pioneers in the trade, the innovators at 1921 have perfected techniques for constructing denim and infuse the collection with everything that a jean should be. The foundation for a pair of 1921s is the best quality Italian or Japanese denim. The brand uses both Candiani, milled in Italy and Kaihara, an authentic ring spun denim produced on original spinning machinery in Japan. Fully handcrafted, each jean is hand-cut, treated and washed to give the denim an authentic vintage look. All abrasion detail is done using special hand tools – making each 1921 jean distinctly different from the next. No detail is spared, down to the hammered buttons and rivets in a patina finish and the busted side seams with a selvage edge look.
1921 fit mimics the natural contours of the body; every fold and crease of the jean essentially becomes a part of its wearer. The collection is crafted to be worn again and again and again, transcending trend. A pair of 1921 jeans purchased today is still favorite 10 years from now.
“The beauty of denim is not what you see but rather what it can become.” – Allan Kemp, denim interpreter, 1921.
Thirty years ago, basic 5-pocket jeans dominated the denim market and thrift stores or flea markets were the source for unique stylings. As a 21-year old with a fascination for clothes, Allan Kemp knew there could be something more.
Kemp crafted his first pair of jeans from two pairs of straight-legged Lee Rider jeans. Deconstructed and retooled, he fashioned a high-rise, wide-bottom, baggy jean. His love affair with the potential of denim was born.
Allan’s passion for the fabric led him to seek master teachers from which to learn the trade of making jeans. He apprenticed under a patternmaker who had been crafting denim patterns for four decades. Stitching techniques were taught to him from a fourth generation hand denim sewer.
Working with a variety of Canadian manufacturers and retailers throughout his career gives Kemp a definitive point of view on how jeans should be made, merchandised and sold. He styled jeans for notable brands like H.A.S.H, Rolling International and Fancy Ass before affiliating with Indian Motorcycle, which led to a partnership with Western Glove Works, the manufacturer of 1921.
Today Allan Kemp prefers to be called a denim interpreter; a denimist who translates current fashion into the most versatile of fabrics; an artisan who renders his work in denim. It is through this lens that he emulates everything a jean should be with the 1921 collection each season.
“At Western Glove Works we are passionate about developing denim products. Other companies sell jeans, make jeans or market them but we think creating jeans is a craft.”– Michael Silver, president 1921 and Silver Jeans.
Western Glove works is seeped in denim heritage. In 1921, the first generation Silver family started a garment factory in Winnipeg, Canada to produce leather gloves and denim work wear built tough for workers across North America. The company has come a long way from its modest beginnings when Gauntlet Gloves, Treatemruf Riders Pants and Handy Andy Overalls were all the rage. Today, Western Glove Works is one of the largest apparel manufacturers in Canada and a leader in the denim manufacturing industry, serving markets throughout North America, Europe and Asia.
Western Glove Works is one of the few remaining denim manufacturers that houses its own sewing, laundry and sandblasting facilities. Though its Winnipeg factory headquarters features high-tech equipment that allows the company to produce high quality products quickly and efficiently, the company employs an elite team of artisans to hand-produce the 1921 product each season. All sanding, whiskering and grinding is done by only two individuals – carefully selected from the 90 hand-technicians that Western Glove Works has on staff. All 1921 jeans are sewn by just a 12 sewing machine operators, hand-picked for their skill.
Today, Western Glove Works brings a family tradition of denim manufacturing to the 1921 brand. It approaches the development of the brand with a simple, time-tested, mission, “Care about the jeans you make and some one will be wearing them for a long time.” While times have changed and much of the world’s denim production has been automated, the original care, concern, dedication to value, quality and style developed by Western Glove Works over the last 80 years ago remains the essence of 1921 jeans. With over 40 million pairs of jeans under its belt, the company’s history and experience continue to manifest themselves in all the Western Glove Works products and brands.
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