Naked & Famous is another tough brand to see at a tradeshow. They have “seasons” in the sense that they release new products in sequence and sometimes in relationship to the greater climate (lighter fabrics in the spring, heavier fabrics in the winter). That being said, I enjoyed meeting with the representatives from Naked & Famous at Capsule: they allowed me to photograph some awesome upcoming pieces and were happy to talk shop.
Of all the raw denim brands out there, Naked & Famous has done the most to introduce the idea of unwashed selvedge jeans to the masses. Back when I first became interested in raw denim – many years ago, during pre-Huddler StyleForum – the first pair I bought, like everyone else, was from APC, and after that I had to move straight into the expensive, exotic Japanese imports. There really wasn’t a middle ground, and the only North American companies producing a well-made jean were niche reproduction brands whose fits were baggy at best and true-1930’s range hand style at worst.
Naked & Famous changed all of that. They introduced a reasonably well-made product at an affordable, entry-level price. Their basic selvedge denim, purchasable in a variety of fairly universal and modern fits (no wide-leg bucklebacks here), was a gateway drug for so many StyleForum posters. And, even smarter, they’ve allowed their customer-base to grow within the brand. You begin with the basic mid-weight, Japanese fabric dark raw selvege denim, but as your hems fray and your taste evolves, you can stay with the fit you know and jump into something more exotic – say, a collaboration with Momotaro or a rare, limited edition camouflage fabric.
Even better, Naked & Famous has approached the vintage denim market with a sense of humor. Many of the high-end denim brands regard their clothes as somehow sacred, and are loathe to do anything that could seem unserious, lacking in that special gravitas that is reserved for carefully reconstructed antique denim. Naked & Famous does the opposite: at least half of their fabric choices are completely off-the-wall, a whimsical twist in an area that sorely lacks anything close to whimsy.
But back to Capsule. The guys showed me two things that I’m especially looking forward to. The first was a new collection of some truly excellent looking flannel shirts. Naked & Famous has always offered shirts, but their Fall/Winter offerings seem especially focused, and seem set to contend with the higher-end flannel market, which right now has been cornered by Japanese imports. These shirts punch way above their weight. The other piece – and probably one of the coolest things I saw at Capsule, period – was Naked & Famous’ take on the Noragi. Sampled in chambray and dark raw denim fabrics, the piece looks excellent, combining the fit of Visvim with the price-range of… Naked & Famous. Really, really awesome.
Beyond their tops, Naked & Famous brought a range of jeans, including the Elephant 3s. Denim is hard to describe (and to photography) so let me just leave you with this: if you’re a fan of Naked & Famous, you won’t be disappointed.