Glossary

1-Piece-Fly

The original name of DENHAM’s unique, easy opening, button fly construction. The design was inspired by the ‘continuous fly,’ which was patented by David Neustadter in 1877.

Boro

Japanese for ‘rags,’ boro refers to the culture and textiles of nomadic workers in Japan. Similar to the history of sharecroppers repairing denim garments in the USA, these communities survived on limited resources and developed techniques for garment making and repair. Sashiko stitching, indigo discharge dyeing and other traditions were combined to create textured, patch-worked indigo items. The term can also be used to describe modern denim repairs that take their inspiration from this tradition.

Broken Twill

Combines a left-hand twill with a right-hand twill as the weft reverses every three warp ends. This breaking of the continuous weft reduces the natural leg twist, which is a characteristic of regular weaves. Wrangler first used it in the 1960s.

Candiani

Founded near Milan in 1938, Candiani is a family-operated, award-winning denim mill. It specialises in fusing heritage techniques with cutting-edge innovation in yarn development. It is also known for its commitment to sustainability and environmentally friendly practises. Candiani has selected DENHAM as an exclusive European partner, entrusted to use the golden rivet (Rivetto d’Oro). These rivets are a seal of quality that certify the garment is made using Candiani fabric. They also celebrate a natural authenticity fused with dynamic fit, modern performance and exemplary quality.

Chain Stich

The traditional stitch used to hem jeans. It uses one continuous thread that loops back on itself and ends up looking like the links of a chain.

Coin Pocket

Often confused as the fifth pocket of the jean, the coin pocket — also known as the watch pocket — was actually part of the original Levi’s XX (501) design from 1873. (The actual fifth pocket is the left back pocket, was added almost three decades later in 1901). DENHAM’S coin pockets are made with a unique “7-Point” shape. It’s a nod to the brand’s first pockets that were inspired by the shape of a jeanmaker’s hand.

Cotton

Cotton is the most widely-used known vegetable fibre, collected from the cotton plant. It has been used for over 7,000 years to make cloth, with first references found in Egypt. It withstands high temperatures and can therefore be boiled and hot pressed. It is abrasion-resistant and gains 10% in strength when wet.

Denim

A sturdy cotton twill fabric characterized by its 3×1 warp-faced weaves. In this weave, the weft passes under two warp yarns to produce diagonal ribbing that’s identifiable on the reverse of the fabric. Traditionally, denim is made with indigo-dyed yarn for the warp and natural (or more usually bleached) yarn for the weft. Nowadays, denim is mostly associated with blue jeans. The word ‘denim’ is thought to have derived from ‘Serge de Nîmes.’ The word ‘serge’ referred to any type of woollen, semi-woollen and silk fabrics, made with twill weave. ‘Denim’ is thought to be short for ‘de Nîmes’ (‘from Nîmes’), a town in the south of France. It was an important textile region in the 18th century for materials such as serge and cloth. Denim first appeared in England in 1695 and has been used in the USA since the mid-19th century. Denim initially gained popularity in 1873 when Jacob Davis, a tailor from Nevada, manufactured the first pair of ‘rivet reinforced’ denim pants.

DENHAM Garment Library (D.G.L)

DENHAM’s in-house archive of vintage denim and utility garments. The pieces have been collected from around the world and are used in the design and development process as sources of inspiration.

Dip Dyeing

Tinting procedure of denim cloth, in which the natural cotton warp yarn is dipped into a number of indigo dye baths. After each bath, the denim is hung out to allow the indigo to oxidize, which eventually turns the colour from yellow to green to blue. As a last step, the yarn is rinsed to remove excess dye.

Fabric Weight

Denim is graded in terms of weight per square yard of fabric, in three categories: light, medium and heavy. The material usually weighs from 5 oz. to 20 oz., although exceptions of extremes like 30 oz. do exist. Most jeans are made of 12 or 14 oz. denim. Lighter denim is mostly used on skirts, shirts and other garments.

House Guest Artist

Each season, DENHAM invites designers and studios to collaborate on limited-edition collections, ranging from clothing and accessories to furniture and sneakers. The project was created with the idea that the collaborators reinterpret DENHAM’s iconic scissor logo in new ways. Past House Guest Artists have included Daily Paper, Art Comes First, Pien Stieglitz and Pirate.

Honeycombs

While breaking in a pair of jeans, the fabric around the knee area gets repeatedly scrunched with friction. It creates fading patterns that resemble honeycombs. They typically appear on virgin denim after a few weeks of wearing regularly.

Inch

An American and British Imperial unit of size used to indicate the length and waist size of jeans. One inch is 2.54 centimetres.

Indigo

Indigo is a natural pigment, originally used for dying the denim yarn. The dye bath starts out with a white-green colour, which only turns blue once the textile is exposed to oxygen. The more often the fabric is dyed and the more dips it has had, the deeper the blue becomes.

Japanese Denim

The Japanese are known for producing incredibly high quality denim through traditional production methods. In the 1960s, big American weaving mills switched from narrow 29” looms to more efficient 55” weaving machines. As the Americans phased out the laborious ‘old school’ method of production, the Japanese purchased the old machines and have continued using them to today. They have since combined traditional American qualities with their own touch: the best yarns, the most rigorous standards for dyeing and weaving, premium fits, and the highest attention to artisan detail.

Jeans

Only since the 1950s has the word ‘jeans’ referred to a specific item of clothing: the denim trouser with familiar features like stitched threads, rivets, five pockets and stitched back pockets. In the mid 18th century, the current spelling of jeans started to appear in England.

Laundry

A ‘laundry’ is a manufacturing company that washes, sand blasts or garment dyes jeans. Italy, Japan and the U.S. lead the field in this industry because their techniques are the most advanced and are therefore most influential in fabric development.

Loom

A loom is a weaving machine that produces fabric by weaving vertical threads of yarn (warp) with horizontal threads (weft).

Left Hand Twill

A denim weave where the twill line rises to the left, usually resulting in a softer hand feel after washing. Also known as ‘S’ twill.

Oz. (Ounce)

The weight of denim is determined after weaving in ounces per square yard. Regular jeans are sewn from 11 to 14 oz. denim, but some Japanese brands have specialized in heavyweight denims of 25 oz. or more.

Recovery

A key element of stretch denim. It refers to the extent to which the fabric returns to its original shape after being stretched to its maximum.

Right Hand Twill

This weave form shows a twill line that rises to the right. The majority of denim is woven as right-hand twill and is also known as ‘Z’ twill.

Raw Denim

The purest form of denim, which has not been washed or treated in any way. It has a deep blue indigo colour with a slight shine and stiff feel. DENHAM calls it ‘virgin’ denim. Over time, it moulds to the wearer’s shape and develops individual fade marks and patterns that are completely unique.

Recipe [Wash Recipe]

A wash recipe is a set of finishing instructions that work in sequence to produce a specific vintage effect. These recipes can feature a series of stages including abrading, baking, wrinkling, washing, bleaching and hand-finishing. A wash recipe is created by research and trial-and-error, and is one of the hardest disciplines to master in jean making.

Rinse

A term that refers to raw denim that is only rinsed, rather than being subjected to a full wash, It therefore keeps its rough, durable qualities.

Rise

The length ranging from the crotch up to the waistband. It can range from high rise (cut above the belly button), to low rise (below the belly button).

Rivets

In 1873, the original blue jean was born when Levi Strauss and Jacob Davis obtained a U.S. patent on the process of putting rivets in men’s work pants. This made a significant different for the common working man, who stuffed pant pockets to the point of breaking them. The demand for riveted pants grew so quickly, it ushered in the original blue jeans era. DENHAM uses special coated copper rivets that are embossed on both sides, so our logo appears on the exterior and the interior.

Seat

The seat refers to the top block of the jeans. How the seat is cut determines how the jeans fit and run from the top of the jean to just below the pockets, where the leg begins.

Service Co.

DENHAM’s Service Co is an all-in-one denim maintenance shop that offers alterations, repairs and laundry service. Staff has been specially trained to stitch, darn, hand-wash, patch and reinforce each pair of jeans by hand. They also take note of natural wear patterns that develop over time, which serve as inspiration in developing washes. Like an atelier, DENHAM Service Co. units are equipped with vintage sewing machines from the U.S. and Germany, which have been restored. The Service Co. is available at select DENHAM stores globally, and occasionally travels to different stores through a road show.

Seven Point Pocket

When DENHAM launched, all of its jeans featured a signature 7-point pocket that was inspired by the shape of a jeanmaker’s hand. This element still appears on all DENHAM jeans in the traditional coin pocket (which is 7-point), and it also appears on special-edition models.

Selvedge Denim

Selvedge (UK) or selvage (US) refers to the narrow and tightly woven, self-finished edges that are natural endings on fabric that’s been woven on an old school shuttle loom. In denim the selvedge is usually white and has a coloured thread in the middle, which was originally added to help manufacturers recognise the different qualities that they were producing for various clients. Although red thread has become synonymous with selvedge fabric, DENHAM styles often feature special selvedge weaves in other colours like blue. Selvedge fabrics are woven on narrow 28-30” shuttle looms. In the 1970s and ‘80s these were replaced by more effective and wider 58-60” projectile looms. Although the older narrow looms produce denim fabrics at a slower rate, their shuttle technology also produces more natural irregularities across the denim’s surface. These irregularities come to life when subjected to special wash-and-wear-pattern recipes, and can produce more beautiful finishing effects.

Stretch Denim

A hybrid denim fabric made with a percentage of elastane, an elastic fibre, in the weft. This makes the style cling to the body with elasticity. Cone Mills was the first (American) mill to produce it in 1962.

Tear & Repair

Tear & Repair is a specialised aging process, where wear-pattern replication includes aggressive sections that constitute ‘tears’ or ‘wear-throughs.’ These areas are then repaired using a range of artisan techniques such as darning, back-patching and front-patching. Natural Tear & Repair techniques require a high degree of skill.

Twill

Twill is a weave technique that gives the fabric a characteristic pattern of diagonal lines. Twill weave is not limited to a certain type of material and can be applied to cotton, silk, linen, wool, or any combination of these materials. All twill fabrics consist of warp threads and weft threads. The warp threads run along the length of the fabric and the weft threads run across the width. The way in which these threads are crossed determines the strength and look of the woven fabric. Thread quality and width also influence the fabric’s flexibility and sustainability. Denim is often specified as 3×1 twill, which refers to the number of weft threads per warp thread: the weft thread is woven three times over the warp thread, one time under, then again three times over, one time under, and so on. Lightweight denim (under 10.5 oz.) typically has a 2×1 twill.

Virgin To Vintage

DENHAM’s ‘Virgin to Vintage’ philosophy celebrates how fabrics age — from unwashed jeans to love-worn pieces — and inspires the brand to create the perfect balance in replicating natural wear patterns.

Virgin Denim

DENHAM’s name for ‘raw’ denim. It’s the purest form of denim, which has not been washed or treated in any way. It has a deep blue indigo colour with a slight shine and stiff feel. Over time, it moulds to the wearer’s shape and develops individual fade marks and patterns that are completely unique.

Vintage

Anything second hand or from the past. Generally clothing older than 25 years is considered to be vintage. Vintage can also be clothing that has not been worn before but has been stored in its original state (referred to as ‘deadstock’ vintage).

Whiskers

The thin, horizontal fading lines you find in the crotch and thigh area of worn-in jeans. Whiskers may also be referred to as a moustache. Slim-fit jeans tend to have tight, straight whiskers, while looser jeans usually have wide, more angled whiskers. Today, majority of jeans are sold with pre-fabricated whiskers.

Worn-In Denim

Denim that has a faded and worn look to it. This can be attributed to intensive, frequent wear or by means of artificial treatment.

Warp

The lengthwise, vertical yarns carried over and under the weft. Because they are subjected to more strain in the weaving process, warp yarns generally have more twist and are stronger than weft yarns. Warp is the yarn that runs parallel to the selvedge; in denim it’s dyed indigo.

Weft

These yarns are subjected to less strain in the weaving process, and thus require less strength than warp yarns. In denim, this yarn is generally left a natural, un-dyed colour.

Weave

Warp and weft yarns are combined in different ways to produce weave designs. These designs affect the appearance, feel, strength and durability of the fabric.

Yarn

A continuous length of spun fibres. Through the process of weaving, it can be used to create fabric.

Yarn Dye

Denim is a yarn dye fabric (as in, the yarns are dyed before weaving).

Yoke

Also known as the riser, the yoke is the V-shaped section at the back of jeans that gives jeans their curved seat. The deeper the V, the greater the curve; the cut of the yoke ranges from straight to very V-shaped to no yoke at all.