Since Mr Levi decided to make some durable trousers made of cotton twill textile for coal miners in the late 1800s, denim has come a long way. Denim has taken to the catwalks, embraced by high fashion, and has become an everyday staple in people’s lives. Jeans is synonymous to casual-wear and also symbolises days off from work and other professional commitments. Growing up, our school had school uniforms so I always associated jeans to special days packed with fun activities. As I tried to decide on my favourite style of denim, I realised how essential denim has been in my life. No wonder my denim stack keeps growing.
Denim is so versatile and is limitless. Just in terms of jeans, the range of styles is staggering – flared to boyfriend, ripped to distressed, hip huggers to high waist, coloured to patchwork. So I was extremely excited to find out about WÅVEN, a new contemporary denim brand which is modernist and focuses on clean simplistic lines. Utilising two generations of denim manufacturing expertise, WÅVEN has a Scandinavian design ethos which blends references from architecture, the arts, and geometry. The collection speaks for itself, but I had the chance to catch up with Anika Islam, the CEO of WÅVEN, to tell us more about the label.
1. As the CEO and founder of an exciting new denim label, could you tell us a little bit about your background.
I had early exposure to denim making and the processes involved in this craft in my childhood. This interest stuck with me. I pursued a degree in Economics followed by a short spell at Central Saint Martins to help further my design ideas. It was always important for me to be independent in my creative thought. Raised in London; surrounded by a creative crowd of individuals and combined with my interest in denim – the opportunity was knocking at my door.
2. You are a self confessed denim enthusiast. What draws you to denim?
What I love about denim is that it is completely transferable across all ages, cultures, gender. Everyone wears it differently. Denim is a craft.
3. WAVEN means a past participle of weave. Tell us a little more about the chosen name of the label?
I wanted a name that was timeless. WÅVEN was conceived from the word woven. Denim is woven from cotton twill in its rawest form, and this relates to our brand ethos of stripping things back to basics.
4. With such a cool label that has Scandinavian influences and two generations of denim manufacturing expertise, we are dying to know how the label came to be. What is the story behind the inception of WÅVEN?
A shopping trip left me realising that I couldn’t find a pair of jeans at £50 which had the fit, quality and level of detail I was looking for. I liked the idea of creating a clean cut minimalist brand that was accessible to a wide audience.
5. The lead up to the launch of the AW 14 collection must have been very hectic to say the least. Were there any challenges along the way?
Too many challenges to count! But it was all worth it to see a great reaction when we launched.
6. Some may say the denim market is quite saturated. As a new contemporary denim label, what makes WÅVEN different from other denim brands?There is always room for more denim. WÅVEN differentiates itself by combining modern fashion ideologies with Scandinavian design influences and providing it at an accessible price point. Alongside our focus on product and creativity; fit, fabric and wash are our main priorities and we want to keep true to this – WÅVEN is an honest brand.
7. What is the design inspiration behind WÅVEN’s AW 14 collection?
The first collection has been inspired by elements of Scandinavian nature and landscape combining with accents of geometry and architecture.
8. What is your favourite piece from your collection?
It will have to be the men’s bomber LOKI. I love wearing oversized jackets and its a great piece to throw on top of any outfit.
9. Where do you see the label in 5 years time?
I would love for it to be everyone’s go-to denim brand for their staples!
10. As a denim lover, you must have millions of secret tips on how to wear denim. Could you share some of your top tips when dressing in denim?
Don’t be scared to wear too much denim! Denim isn’t just casual wear, it can be dressed up or down. Double denim, triple denim – it all works.
Check out WÅVEN’s AW collection here!