With RAW Mazarine G-Star goes beyond the modern history of denim, unveiling the denim roots which go way further back than American workwear. A lot of research has gone into reinventing the intensity of Toile de Chine, a double dyed indigo fabric that pre-dates denim. G-Star designed a range of double-dyed denim styles with an intense blue colour, reminiscent of the Mazarine butterfly.
Indigo is the natural pigment used for dying the white cotton yarns that are at the bases of denim. After the spinning process the yarns are dipped in an indigo dying bath to get their authentic blue colour. The number of dips is essential to the depth of the colour of the denim. More dips will give a darker and deeper shade of blue, where each dip will add to the shade.
G-Star’s RAW Mazarine is inspired by a dark blue fabric originally used in China and brought to France by explorers in 17th century, hence the name Toile de Chine (fabric from China). The fabric, woven from yarns that were all indigo dyed, became the preferred fabric for traditional European workwear due to its strength and the fact that it hardly showed staining. It was not until the start of the industrial revolution, that this fabric turned into denim as we know it today.
Denim is a twill fabric, where the one thread (warp) floats over two or more threads (weft), creating the recognizable diagonal ribbing. Typically for denim today is that only the warp threads are indigo dyed; the weft remains plain white to save on costs. Because the warp passes over 2 or more weft threads, one side of the fabric is indigo blue, and the other is white.
“ G-Star designed a range of double-dyed denim styles with an intense blue colour, reminiscent of the Mazarine butterfly ”
Inspired by Toile de Chine, G-Star designed a range of double-dyed denim styles with an intense blue colour. Double dyed means that, unlike denim today, both the warp and the weft of the fabric are dipped in indigo. Since there are no real samples of Toile de Chine anymore, the G-Star denim designers reconstructed the initial colour.
All aspects were taken into account, including the number of dips in indigo, the tightness of the weaving, and fading experiments. That is also why neither RAW Mazarine fabric is alike and has multiple shades; it reflects the research conducted to recreate this fabric.