by Karen Alberg Grossman

Adriano GoldschmiedThe Godfather of Denim, Adriano Goldschmied, was brilliant last night in Vegas at a seminar hosted by Project and Mavi. Moderated by Sportswear International‘s Jayne Seward with great insights from UBM fashion director Tommy Fazio, Goldschmied spoke candidly about tough denim business in recent seasons and the tremendous innovations on the horizon.

Specifically focusing on a new indigo knit fabric he created in collaboration with Mavi, Goldschmied noted that lifestyles are changing. “We eat organic food, we prefer to ride a bike rather than buy a new Mercedes, we are increasingly health conscious: all this needs a more comfortable, more sustainable product to fit this new lifestyle.”

He then described in depth the process of creating this new indigo knit, starting out with the classic dying procedure but instead of weaving on looms, he created cones of these yarns for new knitting machines. “This gives the look and most properties of traditional denim but with incomparable comfort and stretchability.”

Goldschmied admitted he has no crystal ball to predict how widespread this fabric will become. “Maybe in ten years it will be 30 to 40 percent of the market, or maybe no one will even remember it. But the point for me is that new always trumps old. No one buys jeans because of need; they buy them because of innovation in fabric, fit, wash or sustainability. My simple rule is this: as soon as something is enormously successful, I drop it and move on to something else. I prefer to work on the next thing and leave the old to somebody else.”