NEW YORK — Contemporary label Raw 7 is bringing its tattoo- and rock 'n' roll-inspired vision to denim.
Founded in 2003 by Ofer Ashkenazy, Raw 7 has established a reputation for its graphic cashmere sweaters and tops. The brand has been expanding into new product categories and in October partnered with Israeli intimates company Le Cooper to introduce its first collection of lingerie for spring. This will be followed by the fall introduction of Raw 7's first denim offerings.
The decision to move into denim was spurred by repeated requests from his retail customers, many of whom said shoppers purchased Raw 7 product along with jeans from brands such as True Religion, Seven For All Mankind and AG Adriano Goldschmied, Ashkenazy said.
"We don't want to become a denim company," he said. "But we thought that if we add an item that would be denim and make it a little more special, the consumer would buy it as a novelty product."
Women's styles will be available in skinny, flare-leg and basic styles and made from Spanish denim. Wholesale prices range from $95 for women's to $120 for men's. Ashkenazy has opted for a heavily treated wash and finishing process, a strategy he believes gives the fabric a softer feel and will help differentiate it from other basic denim offerings.
"We wash the fabric, make the pants, spray it with black wax, bake it in an oven then rinse it again," he said. "Finally, we take wax paper and iron the jean with it to give it that final shine."
The same process is being applied in three different color schemes. There's a blue denim sprayed with black, a black on black denim and a standard blue denim with only the wax effect.
The graphic elements from the brand's selection of tops will also find their way onto the bottoms. Ashkenazy said embroidered artwork from the label's fall collection will be incorporated as details, including embroidered lions, a dagger and eagle image and a cross. The images will be tone-on-tone so as to maintain a more subtle and sophisticated look.
Early reaction to the line has been strong, particularly in men's, Ashkenazy said. The line is also being shown to retailers in France, Japan, Germany and Italy. Ashkenazy said he has booked more than 3,000 pieces, spurring him to move forward with expanding the denim portion of the business."We're already working on our second designs for holiday and with new ideas for finishing," he said. "I don't want to make it look torn with too many things going on. It's going to be mostly a cleaner look for now, with a special finishing and more hand detail than your basic five-pocket jeans that are out there."
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
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Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast