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LIVE Interview with Self Edge Store Owner, Kiya Babzani

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 

Check it out below and read our live interview with Self Edge Store Owner, Kiya Babzani.

 

Kiya-Babzani-e1328151535214.jpg

 

self-edge-pic2.jpeg

 

 

Self Edge is located at 

 

Web:

http://www.selfedge.com/

 

San Francisco
714 Valencia St. @ 18th St. (Mission District) 
San Francisco, CA 94110
 
Los Angeles
144 N. La Brea Ave. @ Beverly Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90036 (Mid-City West / Hollywood)
 
New York
157 Orchard St. @ Rivington St. (Lower East Side) 
New York, NY 10002
post #2 of 23
Thread Starter 

How did you get your start?

post #3 of 23

I've had an interest in vintage clothing and denim for many years, far before my wife and I opened the first Self Edge almost six years ago in San Francisco.  I found that the Japanese were doing reproductions of classic American styles better than the Americans themselves and wanted to bring some of those brands state-side.

post #4 of 23

I've had an interest in vintage clothing and denim for many years, far before my wife and I opened the first Self Edge almost six years ago in San Francisco.  I found that the Japanese were doing reproductions of classic American styles better than the Americans themselves and wanted to bring some of those brands state-side.

post #5 of 23
Thread Starter 

That's great that you are bringing attention to lesser known brands from outside the country.

 

How did you come up with the name Self Edge?

post #6 of 23

Self Edge is a reference to the word "selvedge".  Before the 20th century the edge of the fabric (denim in our case) was called "the self edge".  It was later shortened from "self edge" to "selvedge".  There are still some old tailors that you'll run into that still call it "self edge fabric".

post #7 of 23
Thread Starter 

Ohh...I didn't know that. I now see the the connection. That is great. You learn something new everyday.

 

What got you interested in denim?

post #8 of 23

I got really into rockabilly in the mid-90's and sought out clothing that matched the music.  Vintage jeans, johnny-collar shirts, etc.. On some trips to Asia I discovered a few Japanese brands which were reproducing these vintage styles of jeans and shirts but had improved them very slightly and the production quality was something i'd never seen before.  That coupled with the fact that denim itself is such an interesting fabric i became more and more obsessed with jeans and classic 1950's style American garments.

post #9 of 23
Thread Starter 

That's great to hear that you remember every single moment that got you into denim. I do agree denim is an interesting fabric on it's own. It just creates it's own life and keeps the stories written over itself with the wearing.

 

What was the first pair that got you addicted to premium denim?

post #10 of 23

The first pair i got that really got me to thinking about how somebody may take a vintage jean and try and reproduce it was a pair of Yamane jeans i bought at the Yamane Deluxe Saloon in Hong Kong about fifteen years ago.  The store was owned by Yamane himself (the founder of Evisu) and it was his personal collection outside of the Evisu line.  The designs were toned down and the fabrics were made in smaller runs than Evisu.  The jeans cost me almost $300 which fifteen years ago was very expensive for a pair of Japanese made jeans.

post #11 of 23
Thread Starter 

I have to admit that $300 is still pricey now, but nothing is compromised with a price tag like that. You will know the best fabric and thought is put into each detail.

 

What are you thoughts on resin treatments for raw jeans? (Question by Eric Yelsma)

post #12 of 23

I'm not very interested in resin treated jeans, it's more of a fashion thing and not something we (at Self Edge) really get too far into.  

post #13 of 23
Thread Starter 

Which US-made denim companies are leading the way for raw & selvedge jeans? Any new & exciting companies? (Question by Eric Yelsma)

post #14 of 23

Personally i think Roy Slaper is doing something truly amazing with his jeans.  The attention to detail he's putting into every aspect of the jean rivals even the best Japanese brands.

Using all vintage sewing machines and doing every aspect of the production himself it's the closest you'll come to owning a jean put together like a pair of jeans 100 years ago. It's a bit unbelievable what goes into every pair and now that he's working directly with Cone Mills to produce loomstate fabric that was designed for the jean it's the ultimate Made in USA jean.

post #15 of 23
Thread Starter 

I see that you also have a soft spot for jewelry. The pieces are great, especially the Gold Fill Feather Ring.

 

What got you into jewelry?

post #16 of 23

Not sure, i've been wearing jewelry since a very young age, it's something i've always loved.  I remember being a teenager and wearing necklaces and rings and being the only one wearing any jewelry at all.  Jewelry for men is fun, it's really no different than wearing a watch.  Everybody has a cell phone with the time on it, watches are essentially another piece of jewelry and we extend that to rings, necklaces, bracelets, and more.  We've done really well with the Self Edge jewelry collection, and starting in March it'll be available at a few stores in Europe and even a few other stores in the US.

post #17 of 23
Thread Starter 

I have the same thought process with the jewelry. Especially since men tend to wear only basics. We can tend to look bland without some sort of jewelry to make it a bit different. I can't wait to see which stores carry them.

 

What inspires your jewelry line?

post #18 of 23

I like objects turned into jewelry, hence why we work so much with feathers and symbols.  Our new Copper Collection that debuts March 1st is made up of a mixture of copper and silver, this gives the illusion of a gold and silver mix without the high cost of gold involved.  Many of the pieces are symbols of power and progression.  All our jewelry is produced by hand by a small handful of Native America silversmiths from two tribes in New Mexico.

post #19 of 23
Thread Starter 

That sounds amazing. Love the look of mixed metals.

 

I think I covered everything. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

post #20 of 23

I think the readers of Denim Blog should take a closer look at where and how the jeans they wear are produced. It's very telling what you're actually paying for when you dig deeper. The fits from all the popular brands here are also available from smaller companies producing raw jeans such as 3sixteen or Iron Heart.  With a smaller brand you're paying for quality and a great fabric, not a huge advertising budget and money to float flagship stores.  In the end you'll also appreciate the difference once you see a well worn in pair of jeans from these brands which pay great attention to how their denim ages over time.  

 

post #21 of 23
Thread Starter 

That is so great to know. I am sure that all of our readers will appreciate that information. Thank you so much for this interview.

 

You guys can check out SelfEdge.com to see all the great denim and jewelry by clicking here.

post #22 of 23

You're welcome, anybody that needs any sort of advice on jeans or anything Self Edge related can email us off our site: https://www.selfedge.com/

post #23 of 23

Awesome, thanks for the interview!

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