Looking back at the Global Denim Awards and looking ahead.


It’s exactly one week ago that the first edition of Global Denim Awards, made possible by e3 took place in Amsterdam. This first Global Denim Awards got a Dutch winner: Jonathan Christopher.

Global Denim Awards is on one hand a fashion event, and on the other hand a platform for denim innovation. This means that although the show momentum has passed, the journey has just begun. Amsterdam’s position as the European capital of denim will grow in the coming 12 months with the opening of Denim City; the second edition of Amsterdam Denim Days; and the 3rd edition of the Kingpins Show in April 2015.


Global Denim Awards made possible by e3. The winner: Jonathan Christopher x ITV Denim

The winner, Jonathan Christopher (27), earned € 10.000 for the ingenuity and creativity of his designs. Christopher received a master’s degree at ArtEZ Fashion Masters in Arnhem after graduating from the Willem de Kooning Academie in Rotterdam. In addition to developing his own eponymous menswear label Jonathan Christopher Homme, Christopher also works as a freelance designer for Karl Lagerfeld.

For the Global Denim Awards, he worked closely with the Italian denim mill, ITV Denim, which is known for its forward approach toward innovation and sustainability. His on nomad-inspired capsule collection, Jonathan chose left-over materials from the ITV factory to make them into new fabrics. He showed a fur-inspired vest made out of salvaged denim fringe, and created a sweater crafted from left-over threads in all shades of indigo.

As part of his prize, Christopher’s collection will have a traveling exhibition. His collection will be exhibited at Kingpins Shows in Amsterdam, New York, Los Angeles and Hong Kong, as well as during Amsterdam Denim Days 2015.

A special award went to Bossa, a denim mill from Turkey, for their vision on fabric innovation.

Denim City

The Global Denim Awards runway show took place at Denim City. Founded by the House of Denim Foundation in the former tramworks de Hallen, Denim City will officially open its doors in April 2015. Denim City, a denim innovation campus, will consist of: the International Jean School; a Denim Workshop; a Blue Lab; an Indigo Embassy; and a Denim Archive. It will be the place where innovators, students, entrepreneurs, scientists, visionaries and denim lovers can work together “towards a brighter blue.”

About the Global Denim Awards, Made Possible by e3

Where in most design contests and runway shows the spotlight is only on the designer, the initiators chose for Global Denim Awards to be an opportunity to showcase the possibilities that emerge when denim mills and designers collaborate on an intimate and unique level. It is unheard of for mills to be in spotlight at fashion shows, but in the denim industry especially it makes sense for the mills to be recognized as the engines of design and innovation.

For the inaugural Global Denim Awards, six mills were each paired with a designer with whom they shared their factories and R&D developments, as well as mentored their designated designers throughout the design process of their capsule collections. The designers got the opportunity to visit their designated mills and learn all about denim, innovation, sustainability and craftsmanship in fabric, washing and treatments.

The participating mills were: Bossa, Candiani Denim, ITV Denim, Orta Anadolu, Prosperity Textile, and Tejidos Royo. And the participating designers were: Jonathan Chistopher, Stefano Ughetti, Gizem Turan, Fernanda Fernandez, Bhavesh Samji and Anneloes van Osselaer.

Global Denim Awards is made possible by e3, the sustainable cotton division of Bayer Crop Science. E3 is a transparent, environmentally responsible, economically viable and socially equitable program that provides stringent guidelines for farmers in the United States who grow Certified FiberMax® or authentic Stoneville® cotton.

The concept was developed by the Amsterdam-based, fashion recruitment & consultancy agency HTNK in close collaboration with House of Denim and the Kingpins Show. The Kingpins tradeshow, established in 2004, has editions in New York, Los Angeles, Hong Kong. In 2014 they launched an Amsterdam edition as their first-ever European show, making Amsterdam their European denim capital.

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