VIP: Lois Jeans

VIP: Lois Jeans

VIP: Lois Jeans

For decades, the Spanish denim wizards have been bringing sexy back

For decades, the Spanish denim wizards have been bringing sexy back

Photography: David Roemer

Styling: Aryeh Lappin

Text: Kala Herh

While other traditional jean brands have been associated with functionality and toughness, Lois Jeans are synonymous with sexiness. Since the Spanish brand’s inception in 1962, Lois Jeans have advanced what jeans can look and feel like, pushing the textile’s expressive potential beyond the seams. Uniquely constructed from cotton-blend twill fabric, the jeans were made to move in and have an added stretch for easy mobility. It is this full mobility that differentiates Lois from the rest. Once the uniform of cowboys and miners in America, Lois Jeans were made for artists, singers, athletes, and anyone looking to have fun. Their jeans dominated the dance floor back in the ‘70s and were worn by the likes of Abba and Björn Borg. And because of their rare niche in the industry, the brand slowly grew its fan base in Europe. “It’s like, if you buy sunglasses and you want an aviator, you buy them off Ray-Ban, if you buy a scooter you buy a Vespa, if you want to buy a good pair of sexy jeans, it’s Lois,” says Lois Jeans creative director, Arthur Van Rongen from the brand’s headquarters in Amsterdam.

A few years ago, the company ushered in the modern age with a rebranding, spearheaded by Arthur Van Rongen who also serves as the company’s co-owner. One such initiative Van Rongen overlooked in his tenure is a collaboration with V this past summer. Affectionately called Lois V Denim, the 8-piece collection merges archival silhouettes with contemporary details (uniquely, each pair is embroidered with the signature “V” logo). “We tried to create a very inclusive collection; something for all types of people and not just the skinny jeans for the skinny model,” Van Rongen says. The line features four womens’ and four mens’ jeans with an eye toward sustainability. While other jeans are made from 1000 liters of water, van Rongen explained that a pair of Lois Jeans only takes a cup of water to produce. And while Van Rongen and the Lois team are looking forward, they are also actively engaging in the past. Lois designers dig into the brand’s extensive archives to recreate classic fits that will never go out of style. “We don’t look at trends, we look at our own DNA and archives,” Van Rongen notes. And it’s not just the designs, but the production, too. To this day, the jeans are still made by the Spanish team that produced the jeans 50 years ago. As he explains the brand’s rich history, he points to a large film picture hanging on the wall of the brand’s founder, Joaquin Sáez-Merino. For Van Rongen, the portrait serves as a daily reminder of the importance of a tradition. And with that–while the beauty of Lois may lie in their jeans, one could argue it is also found in its genes–the decades of tradition, culture, and heritage woven into each pair.

Read an exclusive interview with Co-Owner and Creative Director of  Lois Jeans, Arthur Van Rongen:

V MAGAZINE: Can you briefly bring us through the origination and the history of Lois Jeans?

ARTHUR VAN RONGEN: Lois Jeans was founded in 1962 after the Franco Regime – Franco was a dictator in Spain and it was a very strict regime. And after that, they saw all the Americans arrive on cruise ships in Spain and they saw jeans for the first time – they were not really familiar with that. And for them, it was a symbol of freedom. So [the founders] said, 'You know what, I don't think there are any European jeans brands yet, why don't we start one?' So then they started Lois Jeans, and they have a history of tailoring in the family. And literally, the grandfather went with donkeys from village to village to sell fabrics. Then they had to find a name. And they wanted to have an international name and they saw a guy in their warehouse was called Louis. And they said, let's call it Louis. And the other cousin said, 'No, let's not. That doesn't sound international. Let's call it Lois, it's maybe more French, more chic.'

V: That’s a lovely introduction. Also, I know that you’ve personally worked in a lot of denim companies before like Diesel, Miss Sixty, and Tommy Hilfiger - What is it about denim that makes you excited?

AVR: I think it’s the sexiness of the product.

V: And given that you've worked at all these other companies, what is special about Lois Jeans?

AVR: It’s the heritage. It’s something you cannot create every day. And even now, I speak about it and I get goosebumps. Every day I meet people that we change something in their lives. We touched literally billions of people's lives and bodies.

V: Can you talk a bit about how you and the team went about designing the jeans for this collection?

AVR: So together with Stephen [Gan], we did the branding. We respected each other's branding–the whole branding of Lois and V, but without losing the DNA of both of the brands. And then we kept it very clean and commercial, but also fashionable. Not too crazy, very likable.

V: What does the future of Lois Jeans look like?

AVR: We have many wild plans. Collection wise we started Club 62, which is curated by some really cool people–we buy old vintage pieces back from the market, sell them back as sustainable pieces, but also redesigned them again and put them in the collection so-called Club 62 to also keep that heritage DNA. We can show them that you know what was cool then is still cool now.

V: What’s the aim of Lois Jeans?

AVR: I think you look good when you wear something that makes you feel better. And that's something that we can accomplish not just with the product, but also with our approach in the marketing and the branding–that's our aim. Our aim is, again, not to be the biggest or the best, but just to make people happy and to give them a smile on their face.


Makeup Yui Ishibashi (De Facto) using Channel Beauty Hair Junya Nakashima, Models Aviana McClish, Paige Federico, Nana Reznichenko, Serigne Lam, Taro Nakamura, Aaron Shapiro (Muse), Digital technician Tara Chumpelik Photo assistant Daren Thomas Stylist assistant Sam Knoll Makeup assistant Aisha Kanaya Hair assistant Erin McCarthy


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