Our Denim Types
All the denim you will find in Redcast Heritage Co. is of course Selvedge.
The denim fabrics that go into the jeans and jackets we sell at Redcast Heritage Co. boast the best quality you can find today, and all of them are selvedge. The word selvedge refers to the self-finished edge of a fabric. Selvedge fabrics are produced on antique shuttle looms that interweave the warp and weft threads by means of a component called a shuttle, which loops the warp thread back and forth on the loom, threading it through the weft threads in a unique way that provides a resilience impossible to achieve on the modern looms used today in industrial production.
Most shuttle looms producing the denim we sell in our store are 80 to 90 years old and are 10 times slower than modern mass-production looms. Furthermore, such looms are far narrower than modern looms and the fabric width they produce does not normally exceed 90 cm (approximately half that of a modern projectile loom). This means that in any selvedge denim garment, whether jeans, jackets or even shirts, we find the end of the fabric in the seams, which prevents the usual fraying and unstitching we encounter in mass-produced garments.
Given the boom in large-scale industrial production and resulting drop in costs, shuttle looms ceased to be used many decades ago. However, a few are still in operation, mainly in Japan.
The vast majority of denim fabrics used in our store’s garments have been made in Japan, mainly in Kojima (the town where Japanese denim craftsmen reside). The rest was produced in the White Oak plant, a small factory belonging to the Cone Denim company located in North Carolina (USA). This was the last factory to produce denim selvedge in the whole of the USA and closed down recently, in 2017.
Although some of our denim garments have been made from sanforized fabrics, the denim you will find in our store is mostly unsanforized given that most of our brands are Japanese. We select some of these garments in a “non-wash” version and others in a characteristic “one-wash” version that is always labelled in the garment description.
All our denim is Raw in that it contains the highest possible amount of indigo and has not been worn down in the workshop. This means that the garment will gradually acquire a unique character over time and washing, and wearing in will occur according to the nature of the fabric and the use you give the garment. We like to view raw denim as a blank canvas on which everyone is the painter. No two same jeans will wear down in the same way.
All our denim garments carry a label specifying the type of fabric from which they are made in the product description.