All Photographs by Jon + Moch Photography
It’s probably safe to assume you have an affinity for denim. We do. Denim is as everyday as work, as typical as cereal for breakfast, as timeless as a hug. It doesn’t go out of style. Style goes out of it … Putting my amazing jokes aside, there is a wonderful company from Australia making topnotch denim right now. If that was all, it would be notable and worth looking into; but it’s not all. There’s a story, as there always is. This story, the one behind what they do and why they do it, is important and praiseworthy. But first, dad.
My dad was a jeanaholic. I can remember his raw denim coming home and the Levi’s tags on the back pocket, before the days of online stores and denim tutorials. He wore those things forever, until the fade cascaded and became a kind of signature. Dad’s signature jeans. As unique as his life. It wasn’t long before I, too, caught the bug and developed a taste of what style was for me. Denim was the centerpiece. For me, if you have good jeans, everything else is an aside.
We live in a time where brands aren’t just making quality clothing, but actually creating good through their business models. Good that didn’t exist before: something altogether different and fantastic. Profits are important and businesses need them and should innovate to secure them, but when the profit mindset is transcended and expanded to account for the everyday lives of individual people, we recognize this as a cut above. The mindset of a business like this is on social good. A denim brand on mission, more than just style, going against the grain? Let me introduce you (if you haven’t had the pleasure).
Hello Outland Denim. Being the Americans we are, this company could have easily slipped past our vision. With nearly 10,000 miles between us, we’re thankful we happened to stumble upon such a unique brand. America has long prided itself in crafting quality denim. Made in the USA, a tagline stitched with pride. However, as I’m sure you’re aware, sweatshop labor happens in the US, too. It’s not just abroad. It’s not just in developing countries. This uncertainty in the denim industry could easily leave you discouraged: where to buy denim that is truly made transparently?
How about Australia? Because Outland Denim is setting the standard for exactly that, what I think of as business as a vehicle for social good. Their sewing facility in Cambodia is a beacon of hope for several seamstresses: young women working toward a bright future, safe and freed from the cycle of abuse, exploitation, and poverty. Women who’ve been rescued from human trafficking. Outland’s seamstresses aren’t just given a good wage, a living wage, but they are given opportunities to learn and develop the skills of strong and wise women, like budgeting and having a business of their own. Feel free to dig deeper and even contact Outland Denim with questions regarding their code of conduct.
Our initial thoughts on this closet essential? Outland Denim is exceptionally soft, yet sturdy to the core. The first wear didn’t seem like the first time I put them on. They feel well-worn, comfortable, ready for any adventure. Emily is wearing the Harriet and I’m sporting the Vanguard. If you’ve been on the hunt for quality, thoughtfully made denim, Outland will catch your attention. Perhaps it’s time to invest: not only in an everyday, wardrobe essential, but in a movement that takes a stand against modern day slavery.
Note: Thank you, Outland Denim, for gifting each of us a pair of denim. For the sake of transparency, we were not compensated for this post! As always, all thoughts and opinions are our own.