Here at MR PORTER, we’re well aware that different items of clothing, like different brands of washing-up liquid, come packaged with various impressive claims and qualifiers. Perhaps it’s “handmade” (in fact, it probably is – all clothing is handmade to a certain extent). Or perhaps it’s “artisanal” (meaning that some kind of skilled craftsman has worked on it). Clearly, some of these selling points are more helpful than others. But when a denim product can boast the words “japanese denim” and “made in Japan” we would advise you to take notice. Why, exactly? “Japanese fabrications are the most authentic in terms of the way the fabric is produced,” says Mr Adam Cameron, the founder and designer of British brand The Workers Club. “It’s about painstakingly respecting the original way that denim fabric was made. It’s the opposite of the industrialised process”.
Though based in the UK, Mr Cameron sources all his denim from Okayama Prefecture, home to Kojima, the so-called “Denim Capital” of Japan, where a glut of traditional mills continue to make (and dye it, and distress it) the old-fashioned way. “There’s a romanticism to it,” admits Mr Cameron, “but you just have to touch the denim and you know it’s different. I don’t think anything compares. It’s also hard-wearing. All the fabrics we use from Japan are fit for purpose. They’re made to last.”
Of course, Mr Cameron is not the only man who recognises the superior quality of Japanese denim. As he launches his natural denim jeans on MR PORTER today, we thought it high time to draw your attention not just to The Workers Club, but some of the other excellent brands that are dedicated to made-in-Japan denim. Scroll down to discover them – and perhaps see what all the fuss is about yourself.