I have spent the summer in a love affair with MiH Jeans. From high-waisted skinny jeans, to linen shibori tees and simple button downs, I am smitten. Fits are perfect and everything washes and wears like a dream. The styles and cuts are classic which is why I love the brand so much. You can wear MiH pieces season after season.
The story behind the brand is what really intrigued me. MiH was re-established in 2006 by Chloe Lonsdale. Chloe’s godfather started the brand in 1969 and her parents were a huge part of the denim revolution of the 1970s. Her father Tony, nicknamed the ‘Blue Jean King,’ was one of the first people to import US denim into the UK to sell in his Jean Machine stores. Her mother Chekkie was a model who became the original face of the brand. Denim most definitely runs in Chloe’s blood. It’s no surprise that she decided to relaunch the brand. I had a lot of questions for her and she was gracious enough to answer them.
Chloe’s Mom and Dad. Chekkie is a total babe!
What was it like to grow up around all of that denim?
It was really fun and I feel that my love for fashion started in my childhood growing up around denim. As a teenager I found trunks of old jeans from my dad’s shop in our attic and cut them into skirts to sell at school. I think that love of fashion was always there and denim just came naturally to me since that’s the only thing my parents wore while we were growing up.
What made you decide to relaunch MiH?
After graduating with a degree in Womenswear Design from Central St Martins, I was working at another brand when I realized there was a gap in the market for beautifully cut, understated jeans with a European aesthetic. I had always wanted to start my own company and denim was the natural choice.
How does the denim market differ between the US & UK? Are there styles that are more popular in the UK versus the US and vice versa?
There are always a few styles that do really well everywhere every season. Since we relaunched in 2006, people have always come to us for our Marrakesh flare, and in summer for our cropped Paris jean – both styles which were huge for us in the 70s, and are equally popular in the UK and the US. Our new Bodycon jean is also very popular in both places. In the UK, our boyfriend styles, including the Tomboy and Phoebe Slim, have really taken off.
From left to right: Paris Ocean Slim; Tomboy Paloma Gray; Marrakesh Marle; Phoebe Slim Cosy Faded Wash; Skinny Bodycon Power Black
What is your favorite jean style?
I always have a few pairs of jeans in my wardrobe for different occasions – such as the Marrakesh high-waisted flare for evenings, the Paris for during the day and any of our boyfriend jeans for the weekend. The Marrakesh and Skinny Marrakesh jeans have always been a favorite of mine because they are the ultimate leg lengthening silhouette and represent the roots of the brand. The classic Marrakesh is a style both my Mum and Dad wore in the seventies and while the leg is flared, it is still incredibly timeless and can double as a smart trouser in the darker denim washes like Raw and Midnight Blue.
Skinny Marrakesh Echo
How would you describe your overall style?
My style revolves around denim and I always like to keep it simple. I have four kids under the age of five so finding pieces that can transition from home, to the office, to post-work events are key.
From whom or what do you typically draw design inspiration from?
Each season the starting point references can come from a period in time, a book, a film, but almost always they fall into a very similar reference point that reads back to denim. It might be anchored in the 70s or related to indigo. They always revolve around a similar theme.
What is your favorite piece from the Pre-Autumn/Winter 2014 collection?
Each season I love to top up my core everyday wardrobe. For AW14 I really love the silk Surf Dress in the ‘Off Reg Classic’ print. It is the perfect transitional piece from summer to autumn: I am wearing it to summer parties now, and will layer it over jeans when the weather gets a little cooler. I am also coveting our Phoebe Slim jeans in Nineties Patch, the Blue Jeans merino sweater and our great new outerwear pieces.
Surf Dress in Off Reg Classic Print
Phoebe Slim Jeans in Nineties Patch
You can never have too many…
You can’t live without…
If MiH was a cocktail, what would it be?
Thanks so much Chloe! There are some gorgeous pieces in the Autumn/Winter 2014 collection. I can’t wait to add more MiH to my wardrobe.
I am outerwear obsessed. My favorites from MiH Autumn/Winter 2014.
Shop MiH Jeans in Nashville at H. Audrey, Jamie and Kayce Hughes or shop online at www.mihjeans.com. Follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.