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All-denim suits: Hot or not?

Wendy Johnson

Denim on denim, for women or men, is enough to drive some fashion folks insane. Too much. Too contrived. Too blue.

But before you write the idea off, consider how hot the denim suits looked on the catwalk at Fashfest 2014. Indeed, Braddon Tailors were ahead of the curve a little with the suits they showcased. Designers like Ralph Lauren have only just unveiled their spring 2015 collection which features denim.

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Pip Morgan, owner of Braddon Tailors, says it isn’t taboo to wear items of denim, like pants and a a jacket, that match “just so”.

“Denim is just another fabric. It’s true there are two-piece suits made out of stone-washed denim, like the one worn famously by Justin Timberlake with Britney Spears, but the fabric comes in amazing colours, including deep blues and different shades of black.”

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“And, besides, the same can be said of clothing made of any fabric, not just denim,” says Pip. “There are great woollen suits available, but also some nobody should be wearing.”

International designers and style leaders are no longer pigeon holing denim as a fabric that only suits jeans.

“The different weights, many colours and properties of denim mean it can be used for anything—shirts, suits, skirts, jackets, jeans, and even accessories and ties,” says Pip.

Braddon Tailors sources Japanese selvedge denim and American white cone denim, as well as denim from mills that are world leaders in supplying luxury fine cloth, such as Dormeuil (established 1847 and operating out of Paris and London).

And Braddon Tailors is an exclusive Canberra stockist of great new indigo union cloth from the famous London Cloth Company.

It is a new take of denim—a mixture of wool and cotton that is perfect for more traditional fitting suits but the fabric also offers the brilliant characteristics of true denim.

“The denims we use for shirting is light weight and has similar properties to a normal cotton twill, and the denims we use for suiting is light weight and as easy to wear as a cotton suit or a pair of chino-style pants,” says Pip.

Pip says feedback from the denim suits at Fashfest was positive with some customers not realising at first that denim was even involved. Braddon Tailors has fulfilled a fair few orders for custom-made denim suits, for women and men, since the event.

“Denim suits are versatile and for the most part can be worn the same way as a mid-blue suit,” says Pip.

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“Great for women and men to wear to work, great for men to wear to spring and summer outdoor weddings, cocktail parties and racing events. We tailor made a suit for Clint Hutchinson, co-founder of Fashfest, which he wore to a wedding in Switzerland and Clint ordered enough material for Clint’s young son to be able to wear denim too.”

The advantages of a Braddon Tailors’ denim suit comes from the incredibly high level of detail and manufacturing. That includes refined details such as cotton shouldering and floating canvassing in a jacket that enables a fit and shape that is difficult, if not impossible, to get off-the-rack.

But what about the latest news stories on the fabric, with headlines in Australia, America and Europe screaming that denim is suffering the blues, that the obsession with denim is wearing thin and that the world’s love affair with denim is fading? What about headlines reporting that sales in the United States alone dropped six per cent last year with consumers favouring leggings, yoga pants and other athletic comfort wear?

Pip thinks it’s a furphy. More and more micro mills and producers of denim are moving full-steam ahead, including by creating unique garments with the fabric—pieces that are more personalised, and not mass produced.

“Levi Strauss and Co made its first pair of jeans in 1873 and there are no plans to stop,” says Pip. “Indeed, as one fabric magazine has written: ‘Denim is one of the world’s oldest fabrics, yet it remains eternally young.’”

Wendy Johnson

Wendy Johnson graduated with a Master’s Degree in Journalism from Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada, a few decades ago. She’s been living in Australia since 1995, having fallen in love with eucalypt trees and kangaroos. Wendy is passionate about Canberra and all the nation’s capital has to offer. She loves to write (about everything and anything) and owns her own pr and advertising business. More about the Author

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