Founder’s Letter: What’s Going on at Kingpins?

It’s Kingpins time. At the time of writing, there are six days before the show begins. We are blessed because the reaction we are getting is substantial and rather unexpected. More than 30 brands from the USA have signed up to come – when we expected almost none;  and more than 1,000 people from Europe have registered. Considering the expected “walk -ins,” our show at SugarCity will have robust attendance and I can almost feel the buoyant attitude, enthusiasm and energy already.

Before Covid, there was an anecdote told to me by various people that I always found funny.

Immigration officers in Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport when stamping the passports asked, “What is the reason for your visit to Amsterdam? Are you here for Kingpins?”

Who would think we were noticed? And who doesn’t like to be noticed? 

We’ve been asked countless times by many people “what’s new at this Kingpins?” I always feel like I should have an easy, concise answer. But there are always too many things in the air, too many things “possible.” And too many things is just too many things and it’s confusing. So here we are, less than a week before the show, let me share with you some of what we have planned. If anyone has any questions, just write and ask away. In no order of importance, here is the list of activities going on:


Don’t email me if your entry takes too long — unless you are really mad. We are trying to make entry seamless and easy, (it’s a permanent concern) but I want you to know that as you enter the show you will immediately see an array of beautiful denim garments. First, you will walk right into Amy Levertons’s Fall 23/24 Trend Installation. After that, you will see our MSP collection (Kingpin’s selection of the most sustainable products). We hope to inspire you the minute you walk in the door.

Entries are a big deal to us. Once in Nashville, when trying to check into a hotel, I had to wait in line but the hotel was creative enough to make their check-in area a store and I shopped while waiting and bought two things. Our waiting area has no store (wish we did) but on entry, you will see something engaging and useful.


There are plenty of seminars, if you like learning or hearing really smart people share what they know and love. 

Wednesday April 20th

10 a.m.

Doors open

10:30 a.m.

The United Nations Conscious Fashion and Lifestyle Network will address “Advancing the SDGs,” a pre-recorded seminar hosted by the Influential and long-time champion of sustainability in the jeans world, Adriana Galijasevic. Here guests are Lenzing Director of Global Business Development for Denim, Tricia Carey (another true heroine of greening up our industry) and Neda Evena, Arch & Hook’s Global Brand & Marketing Director.

11:30 a.m.

Kingpins Trend Time,” with Amy Leverton and Denim Dudes sharing AW 23/24.

1:30 p.m.  

I co-host a panel with textile guru Miguel Sanchez called “Denim Deal – what is it?” Not sure if all of you have heard of this coalition, but it’s an agreement by many brands and their supply chain partners to recycle “post-consumer” garments and turn them back into recycled yarn and use these yarns in their products. A full and complete circular commitment that also includes the City of Amsterdam and a program that has the legs and viability to be adopted globally.

3:30 p.m.

WeAR publishing’s Editorial Director and Co-Publisher, Shamin Vogel, will bring us “NeoDenim: A conversation with our next generation,”a seminar that includes members of the “new young industry community” talking about the future or perhaps even viewing what is going on now.

Thursday, April 21st

10 a.m.

Doors open

10:30 a.m.

We will be discussing Kingpins Exchange, the digital platform designed for anyone that wishes to source denim fabrics. We have worked long and hard on this program and we hope people come to this presentation which will show the product and answer questions or take advice!

11:30 a.m.

Kingpins Trend Time,” with Amy Leverton and Denim Dudes sharing AW 23/24.

1:30 p.m.

There will be panel called “Global Supplier Collaboration – A New Paradigm.”This panel will be moderated by Matthijs Crietee, International Apparel Federation (Secretary General); and guest will be Miran Ali, Vice President, Bangladesh Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) and Managing Director of Bitop Group;  Tim North, Global Head of Merchandising of ECOM USA Inc.  and First Vice President (and soon to be president) of the International Cotton Association (ICA); and me, representing the Transformers Foundation and our desire to create an Ethical Council to help resolve unethical behavior in the supply chain.

3 p.m.

We will wrap up our panels with “Greenwashing 360.” Miguel Sanchez is especially suited to host this panel because greenwashers cannot trick or confuse him or people like him. Our panelists include Franky Vangaever, another textile (and laundry) savant who, after 34 years at Levi Strauss, started his own enterprise, Responsible Textile Innovation; Amy Leverton from Denim Dudes, who needs no introduction; and Bert van Son, founder of Mud Jeans.

Other presentations and events

There are other activities planned — we’ve packed a lot into our two-day show.

House of Denim Presents

Jeans School will present a perspective on the future of denim, titled “Stretch yourself: Denim of the future, designed by Gen Z,” at our show. The denim design exploration is the work of 30 school students, in collaboration with The LYCRA Company and seven of the most progressive denim mills in the world. Don’t miss it. (Read all about it here)

Happy Hour party

Sponsored by the Rudolf Group, which is celebrating 100 years of business.

A lot happened over the past 100 years, yet through it all, the family owned, German chemical company has lasted and evolved and is a leader in the industry, which, in itself, is enough reason to celebrate. Please join us (thank you Rudolf) for drinks between 5pm – 7pm on April 20th

It’s a Rudolf party, but honestly, it’s also our first chance in a long time for all of us to get together in one room for a good time. Hope to see you at the party and we can’t wait to see you at Kingpins!

-Andrew Olah

About Cookies On This Site

When you browse on this site, cookies and other technologies collect data to enhance your experience and personalize the content and advertising you see. Visit our Privacy Policy (updated 3/29/20) to learn more. By clicking "Accept" or by continuing to use the site, you agree to this use of cookies and data.


Upcoming Show Dates

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x