Jeans, and its true origin, is an interesting topic that bears many misconceptions, which Doria & Dojola is devoted to unravel. Already in the 15th century, the Doria family, amongst other merchants, traded with India and made the indigo colour available in Genova. Here it was famously used to dye fustian blue, which was the precursor of what is today known as blue Jeans. This fabric had various applications, but due to its toughness, it was the material of choice for sails and trousers worn by sailors. This was some 400 years before they were popularized in America and became known as blue jeans, the iconic fashion of cowboys. Until today, the American origin of Jeans remains the most common misapprehension about Jeans.
It's all about Water
Doria & Dojola is proud of its legacy that played a key role in the creation of Jeans and is dedicated to shape the future of it. By shifting the association of the material from the cowboy back to the sailor, new opportunities to wear this fabric are created. This also highlights the fundamental relationship that this material has with water, both historically and ecologically. Mass manufacturing of Jeans is extremely resource intensive and harmful to the environment as it can take up to 20.000 litres to create a single pair, while releasing harmful chemicals from the dying process into the surrounding water supplies. Furthermore, a pair of jeans can continue to pollute water during its lifetime, as the PVA coated fabric gradually releases fibres and microplastics every time they are washed. These travel the oceans and could be found everywhere from coastal waters, to the deep sea as well as the surface of the Atlantic. Microplastics are so prevalent in water around the world, that humans ingest an average of 5 grams of it weekly and up to 20kg in a lifetime. This occurs through the consumption of tap or bottled water as well as foods that come in contact with water like fish, meat but also vegetables and fruit.
The Evolution of Genovese Jeans
The Italian manufacturer Candiani Denim, are pioneers of sustainable denim manufacturing and are known as one the greenest denim mills in the world. We share an interest in returning jeans to their roots and creating long lasting and sustainable products. Together, we imagined the evolution of the traditional Genovese jeans and how the fabric would be used for its intended purpose today. Modern and elegant sailors out on the sea, experiencing strong winds and frequent temperature changes would benefit from scarves and stoles protecting their neck and ears. For use in colder weathers, scarves were lined with Biellese cashmere. Also, classic handkerchiefs were designed for visits ashore. The jeans fabric developed for this collaboration is exceptionally soft and comfortable to wear around the neck. The Candiani patented “V-sizing” technology replaces all hazardous chemicals in the production process, including PVA, resulting in a micro-plastic free fibre. Each scarf made from this material receives a unique wash that resembles the waters of the Genovese seaside, creating a more specific homage to the blue fabric’s true origin.