ICYMI: Denim v COVID, Plus Reopening Retail?

Hi Friends,
How is everyone holding up? 

We’re looking for small bits of good news to keep us motivated in this sea of bad news. At the time of this writing, the latest news is that J.Crew might declare bankruptcy this weekend.

Some bright spots:
Candiani Denim is opening again next week. Plus, our denim family continues to be proactive, even in isolation. Case in point: Detroit Denim Co. has switched from making custom jeans to PPE for medical workers. If you have a similar story or know of someone in our community who does, send them our way. We’d like to help share those good vibes.

Also, a heads-up: our Kingpins24 on-demand content will be online for anyone who wishes to see it for another 7 days (said in scary Ring voice). Some of the more popular content includes: a conversation between Piero Turk and Andrew Olah (go to the Bossa section); NPD gave us some really great information about denim sales and the effects of COVID-19 on consumer spending; and our buds at The Vintage Showroom put together a bunch of denim eye candy in a series of galleries.

New on Kingpinsshow.com:
The 3rd episode of Denim Talks, our podcast, just dropped. It features an in-depth interview with Sanjeev Bahl of Saitex. Tune in to learn about how COVID has revealed the thin (and false) veneer of stability in the fashion industry. We talk about what’s next. Plus, Saitex is going to upend garment production with new factories. NBD.

Did you know we cover trend regularly on the site with new content from Denim Dudes? This week we’re exploring The Softening of Menswear. Cozy! But still elevated!

Stay safe out there.

-The Kingpins Team

Links to keep you informed and inspired:

Take a little trip, take a little trip with meeeee 
(to the Levi Strauss exhibit)

The Contemporary Jewish Museum has been forced to close bc COVID but it has made a virtual tour of its “Levi Strauss: A History of American Style” exhibit so we can all marvel in the icon that is Levi’s. Check it out! Where else are you going to find NWA, Brokeback Mountain, Einstein, a car dressed in denim and Andy Warhol all hanging out together? Nowhere, that’s where. Probably.

Read More: Take a virtual tour of “Levi Strauss: A History of American Style” 
Watch: The CJM is posting videos about their exhibitions and they did an entire talk about denim’s role in rebellion

Denim for the safety win! New study shows that denim is one of the best materials for DIY coronavirus face mask

Smart Air, a social enterprise and certified B-Corp, has released a study that shows 10oz denim and canvas are the best fabric options for DIY face masks to protect against COVID-19. Which is great, because so many of us are using our denim to make masks. The worst options that are “only slightly better than nothing”: ramie scarves, cotton T-shirts, bandanas.

Read More: The Ultimate Guide to Homemade Face Masks for Coronavirus
Read More: Denim Dudes is keeping a running feed of denim masks

Some US states are reopening, but major chains are opting to sit it out

A Wall Street Journal article is reporting that “Macy’s Inc., Gap Inc. and TGI Fridays Inc. are among the big national chains saying they will sit out the early phase of reopening in states such as Georgia and South Carolina, citing health concerns and uncertain customer demand.” Consultants are saying that large retail locations aren’t profitable if safety restrictions limit the number of shoppers who can enter to “just a handful.” But, obviously, retailers are looking for signs of how and when to open up again. A retail consultant at Deloitte is using cellphone location and credit card data to help predict areas that might see store traffic come back first.

Read More: States Reopen for Business, but Many Big Chains Sit It Out for Now

Who wants to go to the mall?

The biggest mall operator in the US has announced plans to open 49 malls across 10 states starting today, May 1. Documents it has shared with retailers in those malls may give us a preview of what pandemic-era shopping will be like. And, dudes, it’ll be really different. Regular announcements will be broadcast to remind shoppers to maintain social distance, signage will be all over the place with safety precautions, taped-off urinals – the works. Plus, there will be lots of closed storefronts, including Gap, Macy’s and more who have announced that they will not be opening stores even as states lift restrictions.

Read More: Biggest Mall Operator in U.S. Plans to Reopen 49 of Them

Tangential but interesting: creating content in the time of COVID 

The Fashion Law examines the new phenomenon of creatives making content in isolation with the help of FaceTime and other technologies and applies a legal lens to the whole thing. According to TFL article: “With the obvious roadblocks to traditional photoshoots that are currently in play, and considering how COVID-19 practices may play out after business goes back-to-normal, FaceTime photoshoots are being poised as the future of fashion photography, at least for the foreseeable future. Not only does this stand to change how fashion imagery is created, it raises some interesting questions from a legal point of view, namely, about authorship and ownership.”

Read More: As FaceTime Photoshoots Find Favor in Fashion, What Does That Mean for Authorship and Ownership?
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