RED COTTON DENIM
I have always wanted to have my own business, do my own thing. A few years ago I found my passion, which has become Red Cotton Denim.
Back in 1999, I was stationed in Japan on the USS Kitty Hawk as an engineer with the Navy. I found a new appreciation for American made products when I saw how much the Japanese valued the quality of anything handmade in America.
When I came back to the States, I worked for friends in the trades who owned their own businesses, cutting trees and building houses. I saw that with skills, the right tools and hard work I could be successful.
At the time I was dating a girl who was into designer denim. I had no idea what 7s, Joes or True Religions were. Trying to impress my girl, I went to find some for myself. I’m 6’5”. None of those jeans were going to fit me. I thought…I’m an engineer, I can figure out how to make jeans.
Once I set my mind to making jeans, I was lucky enough to meet The Guy in San Francisco who knew everything about manufacturing denim. He was a sailor too and took the time to explain the business to me. Around the same time, I also met a guy in Oakland who was making kick ass jeans from start to finish by himself. He shared his knowledge about denim and machines with me and inspired me to follow my heart in making handcrafted denim.
When I realized how much time and money it would take, I dedicated myself to saving every penny for machines and learning every part of the business from design, construction, pattern making to selecting fabric and selling my jeans. I started making custom jeans for women and figured out a lot about tailoring and fit. But it was always my guy friends asking me for jeans, and up to this point, I had only been making men’s jeans for myself. I had my Johnny B Good pattern graded so I could easily make jeans for friends when they asked.
A few months ago, I landed my first order with a store in San Francisco. Crafting dozens of jeans by myself in only two weeks was a real test. And the start to realizing my dream.
My ignorance at how hard it could be got me started. As I learned how much is involved, my determination kept me from giving up. My passion for hard work and quality American made goods is what you’ll find at Red Cotton Denim, from hand-sewn Cone Mills denim to the hand stamped leather patches.