This Blue Blooded Q&A series is a collaboration with Long John. The series is sponsored by Bluezone, the independent show for denim and sportswear by Munich Fabric Start. Register for the next show here!
Get to know Robin Meijerink, a face from the Blue Blooded Portfolio
Robin Denim really doesn’t need an introduction. The guy behind it, Robin Meijerink, is one of the most popular Instagrammers in the denimsphere.
So, of course, we needed to get his portrait for the Blue Blooded Portfolio when we had the chance during Bluezone earlier this year.
Until not that long ago, Robin’s story wasn’t really public knowledge. Although the camera clearly loves his face (and fades), it wasn’t until I interviewed him on video a few years that I learned his story. Recently, I also interviewed Robin on the podcast and got even more details.
In this Q&A, you’ll read the story of how Robin completely messed up when he had to steam clean his jeans.
What’s your story?
Robin Meijerink aka Robin Denim
Ede, the Netherlands, Europe, the World
‘Jack of all trades’ at Robin Denim
@robindenim and @robindenimfades
Robin’s path into the denim business
Thomas: How did you get into (the world of) denim?
Robin: More than a decade ago, two good friends of mine went to Tenue de Nîmes and both bought a pair of Japanese selvedge denim jeans. At that time, raw denim was completely new for me, and I didn’t understand what it was all about.
The two guys convinced me to go to the store, and I tried on a few pairs of jeans. They werenøt comfortable, they were expensive, and the idea of not washing the jeans wasn’t really appealing to me.
In the end, I bought a pair of RGT SKs and started wearing them while it was around 25°C – it was bloody hot! In the first three weeks, I didn’t enjoy wearing the jeans at all. But once the first fades appeared, I was hooked!
T: What was your first pair of jeans?
R: A 14 oz. Rogue Territory SK, which I wore for 18 months straight.
T: When did you know you were ‘hooked’ on raw denim?
R: After a few weeks of wearing my first pair of jeans, when the first fades started to show, I was completely hooked!
T: What is your favourite thing about raw denim?
R: I enjoy every single stage of the fading process. The first few weeks, when the fabric is still rigid. When you get the first signs of fades. After a few months when the fades start looking really nice.
But, once I wash a pair of jeans, I usually start wearing a new pair because it feels too much like a pair of pyjama pants.
Robin’s views on the denim business
T: What has been the greatest challenge you’ve faced so far, and what did you learn from it?
R: A few years ago, when I still lived in Utrecht, I had a bathroom without a window. After wearing a pair of jeans for about 18 months, without a single wash or soak, they smelled like a wet dog. I read on a forum that steam could help get rid of the smell without washing a pair of jeans.
So, when I took a shower, I hung my jeans in the bathroom in order to ‘steam clean’ the jeans. What happened was that the ‘wet dog’ smell was in the bathroom for a few weeks, a few fights with my ex-girlfriend, and the jeans were still smelling like they have been rotting for a while.
After that experience, I threw the jeans in the washing machine, and the results were amazing!
Tip: You could also hand wash you jeans. Learn how to in this video guide.
T: Which denim brands inspire you? And why?
R: There are many denim brands that inspire me for various reasons. But, if I need to narrow it down, the denim brands that inspire me the most come from Japan. Why? Because of its heritage, expertise, and fabrics.
T: Which denim retailers inspire you? And why?
R: Tenue de Nîmes. One of the best denim stores in the world. Fantastic collection, experienced customer service, great team!
Robin defines his denim style
T: List 3 of your favourite garments or accessories and (try to) explain how they define your style
R: 1) A pair of jeans. A good pair of jeans is the foundation of my outfit. I usually wear a pair of jeans in between 14 and 16 oz. of weight. Why? Because it’s rigid and stiff enough without being unwearable. And because I can wear it all year round.
2) Chambray shirt. Five out of the seven days a week, I wear a chambray shirt. The combination with denim is perfect, it’s comfortable and suitable for every occasion. I own about 20 blue chambray shirts and most people will not see the difference, but I do!
3) Sneakers. Although I love to wear a solid pair of boots in the winter, I wear comfortable sneakers on most days.
With a pair of high-top Converse or Vans, combined with a pair of jeans and a chambray shirt, you can’t go wrong!
T: What do you never leave home without? And why?
R: A leather cardholder! I never leave home without a leather cardholder. The one I’m carrying now isn’t super special, it’s just holding all my cards.
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