These jeans feature Georgia-grown cotton, Cone White Oak denim milled in North Carolina, YKK buttons, rivets and zippers forged in Kentucky, and a full production executed in LA using an eco-friendly ozone laundry process. Both men’s and women’s styles will be available exclusively online. The retail price? Less than $100.
Denim Therapy had the chance to interview Agave Denim designer Jeff Shafer on their latest releases, evolving design process, and what sets them apart from other denim brands on the market right now. Check out the answers below!
Denim Therapy: Thanks so much for taking the time to Q&A with us. First, tell us a bit about what the design process is like for each collection.
Agave Denim: First, we have a meeting to discuss our current inspiration. We talk about the mood, colors, textures, graphics, etc, and Lauren makes a giant story board. We review several “top secret” color trend services to compare to our inspiration board before generating a first draft color story. We review thousands of fabrics and order hundreds of swatches. Once we narrow down swatches and finalize our color story, we review accessories, packaging, fits, shapes, and silhouettes. We edit, design, drop, and curate, while keeping emerging trends in mind.
Lauren creates patterns and sews samples for the womens line based on the fits and silhouettes we’ve developed. Then comes the merchandising plan and ordering of sample fabrics. After cutting and sewing the first protos, we make the necessary adjustments, and then start shooting our lookbooks!
DT: Agave Denim is definitely known for rich, interesting fabrics. How do you go about sourcing them? When do you know a fabric is perfect?
AD: Over the years, we’ve gotten to know the best mills in the world, from Japan to Italy, Spain, Greece… But you can only “learn” so much about fabric. In the end you either have the passion and an instinct to know or you don’t. Really beautiful denims and other quality fabrics get me super stoked.
Similar to a chef, a winemaker or a cheesemaker or quality butcher. I can see the potential of a fabric in its color, yarn character, texture, etc. It’s instinctual.
DT: We think it’s awesome that the two of you work as a team and have the technical and creative aspects of the process covered. How has that shaped the way Agave Denim does things differently?
AD: Lauren taught me all the basics of the industry 20 years ago, including how to put a collection together. Our roles differ in that I’m more into colors, pretty fabrics, seeing the design process through rose colored glasses while she is more technical, tailoring, cost sheets, etc. We both have incredible respect for each other. We share the same vision for design, quality and integrity.
DT: Give us three key words that describe Agave’s line.
AD: Authentic WestCoast Luxury
DT: Do you have any favorites in the spring line you want to shine a spotlight on?
AD: For women, the Chica jegging, the Peace Corps tomboy fit Capri, and the Linea jean. For men, the slim fit Maverick limited edition selvage jean, the vintage slub Lobster hoodie, and the classic fit Pragmatist cotton/linen jean.
DT: Describe your ideal female and male customers.
AD: They’re into music, art and fashion… and they’re definitely health conscious.
DT: What would your ideal collaboration be?
AD: I would like to shoot a look book with Ansel Adams. I would like to do a leather collection with Belstaff. I would like to do a Tesla “Model X Agave Edition” automobile.”
DT: What message do you have for denim consumers who are more or less lost in the sea of options right now?
AD: Invest your hard earned cash in high quality timeless pieces. Choose vintage whenever possible, especially where quality is involved. Know the difference between disposable and quality and don’t get ripped off!
Visit Agave Denim online and on facebook to learn more—also, don’t forget to check out their spring 2012 lookbook!
—Michelle Christina Larsen
Tags: agave denim, denim designer, interview, jeff shafer, q&a
Agave Denim is coming back strong for spring in both the men’s and women’s lines, with their signature rich colors and innovative denim fabrics (remember their gorgeous fall 2011 line?). Husband and wife team Jeff & Lauren Shafer took their inspiration palette from the Sea of Cortez and trips they made to Baja in the ’60s and ’70s. The dream vacation inspiration shines through in delicious hues and resort-esque styling. The “West Coast Luxury” motto of the spring line leaves behind age restrictions and trend-chasing for something more universally applicable (and appealing): “ones inner confidence and ability to enjoy the simple beauty of life.”
They source only the finest Japanese, Italian or USA-made Supima cotton denims and luxury fabrics and work with select boutique mills to design exclusive fabrics. With Jeff’s denim-obsessed eye for unique, high quality textiles and Lauren’s intense pattern making background and precise fitting fanaticism, the two of them have created a line that redefines the spring wardrobe (or maybe just reinforces what it should have been all along).
Keep up with Agave online and on facebook, and stay tuned for some exclusive inspiration boards right from the design offices of Lauren & Jeff Shafer…
—Michelle Christina Larsen
Tags: agave denim, Italian denim, Japanese denim, jeff shafer, lauren shafer, made in america, mens denim, spring 2012 lookbook, supima cotton, womens denim
Last time we talked Agave Denim we were giving away two gorgeous pairs of jeans to two lucky readers—but the truth is, whether you win them, buy them, or otherwise miraculously acquire them, owning a pair of Agave Denim Jeans is an experience not to be missed. Designed by husband and wife team Jeff and Lauren Shafer, the brand has what you want: comfortable, chic, luxurious, eco-friendly, on-trend pieces that fit great and go with everything in your closet. We had a chance to stop by the showroom to discuss the fall and holiday collections, as well as get a quick sneak peek at spring 2012!
The fall 2011 line is Lauren Shafer’s first full spectrum collection after her stay-at-home-mom hiatus. A total fit fanatic and a skilled pattern maker, she made all of her own first samples this season—talk about hands on! She chose to work only with hand-picked luxury fabrics, creating a line with 17 different fits of jeans, jeggings, and trousers in both indigo and novelty fabrics, including a gorgeous indigo cord as an alternative to fall denim. Key new fall fits include the “Listo” and “Fortuna” slim fit and higher rise trouser and the Fusta riding jegging (which you see a detail shot above). To pair with these pieces, she designed both fashion and basic knit sweaters in Supima cotton and other cotton blends, as well as some killer leather jackets.
More points for Agave? They also offer dark denim in super soft, stretch fabrics that use less water in the wash process through an “Ozone washing”. Check out the full fall 2011 lookbook for women below!
In the men’s line, the focus continues on fabric and fit—most fabrics employ 98/2% cotton/elastane to give comfort but retain shape. Jeff Shafer considers designing an art and works similarly with strictly hand-picked fabrics from boutique mills in Japan, Italy, and the US. He created new finishes and vintage-esque washes in a variety of fits, expanding also into a broad range of super wearable luxury Supima cotton knits and t-shirts, as well as leather jackets and some covetable merino wool sweaters. One of his favorite styles in the fall line are vintage black and colored yarndye denim in muted Autumn hues.
Agave Gold Label also offers limited edition selvage jeans, numbered and signed. This season, it’s the “1930’s rinse” selvage from Cone White Oak, which has the look (but not the feel) of raw denim. Check out the full fall 2011 lookbook for men below!
Finally, we were treated to a preview of the spring line, which included lots of gorgeous colors taken from the landscape of Mexico and the Sea of Cortez (more on that later), applied to fresh fits and looks we can’t wait to wear. Stay tuned on this one, denim-heads—we’ll show you the mood boards the designers created to inspire this spring collection!
Check out our snaps from the showroom of the fall/holiday 2011 and spring 2012 lines below, and check out Agave Denim online to shop the fall collection now!
Showroom photos by Raffael Flores-Contreras.
—Michelle Christina Larsen
Tags: agave denim, Fall 2011, holiday 2011, jeff shafer, lauren shafer, mens denim, showroom, spring 2012 preview, stretch cord denim, womens denim