Written by Hyun Yeu. Yeu worked as head of design at Gsus for the last six years. Before that he owned his own label Ado Les Scents.
Amsterdam - Taking place twice a year, Kingpins Amsterdam is the place to be for denim lovers from around the world. A wide range of fabric manufacturers, denim mills, suppliers, stitching-, trimming- and washing houses and fabric tech companies from all over the world gather in Amsterdam to present the latest developments in the denim industry at the denim trade fair.
There are two reasons for me to visit a trade show: inspiration and solutions. This edition of Kingpins managed to do both!
I soaked up the atmosphere of the participants simply by wandering through the Westergasfabriek venue and seeing the ‘indigo blooded’ crowd there – looking at their style of clothing, the accessories and shoes worn and hair. Their passion for workwear and denim, on display like live mannequins gathered in their seemingly natural habitat, talking to each other, doing serious business. For me to observe and enjoy from a distance.
But maybe the biggest value add of this edition of Kingpins for me lies in the solutions area: as a designer I am constantly looking for solutions – solutions to challenges in the design of garments or challenges related to fabrics, washings, stitching, trimmings et cetera.
The biggest value add of this edition of Kingpins for me lies in the solutions area: as a designer I am constantly looking for solutions
Green solutions at Kingpins Amsterdam
I saw solutions – and they were all green! Almost everything I saw at Kingpins was in some form or way linked to sustainability and the notion of green fashion.
Green fashion always has been on my mind, but I have been neglecting it mostly because of higher prices or high minimum production numbers. For me sustainability was more for brands that built their identity around it – not for all. Today, I stand corrected!
For me sustainability was more for brands that built their identity around it – not for all. Today, I stand corrected!
At the first day of Kingpins, I saw a inspiring display of the fact that our sector has matured in this respect and that there are so many different options and solutions available: being green and affordable can go together! Throughout the entire production process and the entire fashion value- and supply chain, sustainable options are available: organic cotton, yarn made from recycled materials like bottles and waste clothing, natural dye, energy and water saving washing processes. Almost every exhibitor at Kingpins has something sustainable to offer. It was hard to miss.
Hyun Yeu: ‘My favourite material was Refibra from Lenzing’
My favourite material was Refibra from Lenzing. We know Lenzing from it's famous Tencel and Modal fibers and fabrics. This new developed Refibra is mixture of cotton pulps made out of waste cotton and wood pulps from sustainable forests.
It has great hand feel of tencel and soft cotton. Depends on the mixture of Refibra and other yarn could make all different kind of fabrics. There were already multiple options in Refibra mix in display.
‘The circular economy has now also entered the fashion industry’
It is encouraging to see that the concept, the importance and reality of the circular economy has now also entered the fashion industry - and that our industry is fully embracing it.
Some odd years ago the notion of using organic cotton or recyclable fabrics was seen as new and kind of odd. Now (high)-tech companies are in the lead with inventing new sustainable fabrics and energy efficient and CO2 neutral production processes.
Photos: The Kingpins Show Amsterdam. Credit: Hyun Yeu for FashionUnited.