Mid-interview, Arthur asks me if I can compare Lois to another denim brand. I hesitate for a moment. Then I decide I can’t. And I immediately understand why Lois Jeans is back.
It hasn’t been an easy journey for the iconic Spanish jeans brand.
Established in 1962, Lois was the first European jeans brand that conquered the world. After becoming the favourite jeans of legends such as Abba and Björn Borg in the 70s, the brand’s sales declined in the early 90s. It was picked up by different people afterwards who tried to revive it, but nobody succeeded in making the brand successful again.
Enter Los Hermanos Azules, a Dutch company run by Arthur van Rongen and 2 partners. He and his team worked hard to put Lois back on the map.
Daily Dose of Denim: Could you tell us about your denim journey?
Arthur van Rongen: It all began at Diesel. I got offers from different denim brands to work for them, they were all located in Amsterdam, where I live. Diesel was located in Eindhoven, but for me, distance didn’t matter. I wanted to work for Diesel, a brand with campaigns that were so well thought through and product that was so innovative – I didn’t have to think twice.
Later on, I also worked at Miss Sixty and Tommy Hilfiger. My biggest learning from working for these kind of brands, is that you don’t have to try to create a hype. Because if your brand skyrockets, the downfall will follow inevitably.
DDOD: So with Lois, you are not trying to create a hype.
AVR: Absolutely not. We are taking the time to build a strong brand again. I am so happy we are working with the Sáez Merino family, who founded the brand in the 60s. The design is done in The Netherlands, the production in Spain, in a factory that only produces the Lois collections.
We went back to the basics and the rich history of Lois. The brand was quite revolutionary in the 70s, because it wasn’t built on function, but on fashion. Lois was the reason women started wearing jeans on a daily basis, especially when they added stretch fibers to the fabric.
We reintroduced the brand in 2015 so it’s all still very fresh. But the future is looking bright.
DDOD: The design is done in The Netherlands. Where do you get your inspiration for the collections?
AVR: I buy a lot of vintage items, mainly in New York and Los Angeles. I try to understand the construction of the pieces, I deconstruct them and try to improve them. I keep my eyes open at all time, try to pick up the needs of women and create must-have items for them.
We brought some of the key items back to live, like the Raval, a flared jeans. Flared jeans are what the brand is most known for, they were and still are the bestsellers in each collection.
DDOD: Where can we get our hands on Lois?
AVR: For the moment, Lois is available in 10 European countries, it has 160 points of sale in The Netherlands, 40 in Belgium and nearly 70 in Scandinavia. But the jewel in the crown is the flagship store in Amsterdam, the Lois Galeria. It offers the complete men’s and women’s collections, exclusive books, furniture, fine jewellery and perfumes.
Lois Galeria is located at the Gerard Doustraat 74 in Amsterdam.
Click here for the Lois website.