INTERVIEW: NEUW DENIM
Australian clothing brand Neuw Denim is the brain child of Par Lundqvist, Richard Bell and Stephen Little. The trio hold a strong belief in denim innovation, making them independent by nature and allowing them to stand out from the rest. Offering only the best fitted jeans, fabrics, details and finishes from the past 100 years. As well as kicking off in Australia, their brand has been adopted by premium international markets such as USA, Canada, Sweden and most recently, Asia. We interviewed Rich and Par to find out more about their story.
Q: What was the reason behind the birth of Neuw Denim?
A: We just thought when working for two of the biggest global denim brands that there was a gap in the market for a modern denim brand that had an edge which would better suit the counter culture rebels of the 1950's living today. We were disappointed that the bigger denim brands of today seemed to have lost the reason they have become iconic - that is innovating great products and pushing boundaries. We thought this corporate approach missed the mark of what made jeans the uniform of youth culture.
Q: What is the inspiration behind the brand?
A: Post punk bands and the music, and of course the denim that was customized and worn by them.
Q: How did you come up with the name Neuw?
A: When Par lived on Nieuwland Straat in Belgium in 2005, he started cutting and re fitting some of his own vintage jeans to have a more modern fit. That was the birth of the concept we now call Vintage Revision. We thought it was kind of nice to name it after that place so shortened the name to Neuw from Nieuwland.
Q: What is one style we should all have in our wardrobe and one style that our men should own too?
A: I think the Vintage Skinny is the best staple jean we do for girls... and for the guys the Iggy has been the stand out... but the cooler guys are in the Lou Slims (selvedge of course)... and the super denim heads lose it over the Johnny Tapered in the 14 oz Japanese raw selvedge.
Q: Tell us a bit about the new Sydney Store on Oxford Street.
A: Service Oxford Street is our 7th store. We have had a pop up store or two in that mix. But as a rule of thumb for retail, we try to find original heritage buildings that have the beauty and substance we like in our brand aesthetic. Like all the spaces we occupy, we bring the original features back to life. The store is in the right part of town for us, too. Not too ponce-y, with plenty of edge and grittiness, and near the best bars which helps!
Q: Who is your largest international stockist at the moment?
A: We are sold in Urban Outfitters, Solo, Volt, American Rag, Fred Segal and have some small trials running in Bloomingdales currently in the USA, which I’m sure could be a contender for the biggest next year. However, Solo of Sweden is our biggest to date with 12 uber cool denim stores in Scandinavia powering with NEUW.
Q: What’s next in the books for Neuw Denim?
A: New retail space, bigger push into northern hemisphere and a cracking winter concept! In terms of retail, we have a plan for a store in Stockholm soon which is kind of cool considering it's the mecca for die hard jean dudes. We are also excited that real denim and washing feels like its coming back... Par is really sick of seeing chubby men in tights masquerading as jeans wearers. Personally I don't mind it.