Tokyo -- the best souvenirs tell stories. Japanese jeans are a living history lesson.
According to cultural historian, "the wind and soul: American fashion retained in the Japanese (Ametora: How Japan Saved American Style) author w. David Max (w. David Marx), reeves (Levi 's) landfall in Japan about 75 years ago, since then, the Japanese manufacturers will aizen hundreds of years tradition and their love of Levi's 501 Style unifies, has made the world's finest high tannin and classic jeans.
据文化历史学家、《洋风和魂：日本的美国风尚留存》(Ametora: How Japan Saved American Style)一书的作者W·大卫·马克斯(W. David Marx)介绍，李维斯(Levi’s)大约75年前登陆日本，从那时起，日本制造商就将几百年的蓝染传统与他们对李维斯501风格的喜爱相结合，做出了世界上最精致的高档丹宁和经典牛仔裤。
We met for coffee in Tokyo to discuss why Japanese jeans are so appealing to tourists who like to shop.
Any stretch denim, too thin, too much leg, too wide, after five years will look ridiculous, but all 501 straight version of the classic jeans, after 20 years will be like now looks great, because they are the classic prototype of jeans, he said, "changes in the design, the art is changing, but will always be good. Really good fabrics"
The Japanese love affair with cowboys, especially blue ones, dates back to world war ii, Mr. Marks said. During the postwar American occupation of Japan, used jeans (mostly Levi's) entered stores by bartering with American soldiers. Back then, americans devalued jeans, tearing them into rags and stuffing them into packages like paper towels. But Japanese consumers value them so much that stores sew them back together for sale.
Over the next few decades, Japan moved from embracing the blue cowboy to perfecting it.
With any luck, she found herself one day time, also some money in hand, can be in the capital, shopping, you can in the streets, shops, and generation of officer mountain bakery, find a focus the whole Japan's best high tannin, here the distance than the life of a short way from the central station, is often referred to as "brooklyn" in Tokyo.
Daiguan hill has all the cool shops in brooklyn, but it doesn't have the rage of brooklyn, Mr. Marks said. "everything is refined, polished and peaceful."
To start the day, head to daikanyama's daikanyama bookstore for a quick denim education. In the fashion section, in addition to Mr. Marks's book, you'll find "a history of old western jeans" by Michael Harris and a book by Aota Mitsuhiro, translated as "who made the 501XX?
作为一天行程的开始，你可以先去代官山的时尚书屋茑屋书店，接受一场丹宁知识速成教育。在时尚专区，除了马克斯的书，你还会找到迈克尔·哈里斯(Michael Harris)的《老西部牛仔裤史》以及青田充弘(Aota Mitsuhiro)的一本书，书名翻译过来是《谁创造了501XX?未曾讲述的李维斯历史》。
Over coffee at the Anjin Library & Lounge, next door to the bookstore, and through old photographs and illustrations, you begin to understand how the jeans you'll be trying on came about. You'll also begin to understand why, when you walk into a store, surrounded by denim jackets, flannel, leather tags and trucker hats, you feel as if you've stepped into an ancient marlboro AD in central Tokyo.
去毗邻书店的安进图书馆酒廊(Anjin Library & Lounge)一边喝咖啡，一边翻阅书中的老照片和图解，你会开始了解你将要试穿的牛仔裤是怎么来的。你也会开始明白，为什么当你走进一家商店，被牛仔夹克、法兰绒、皮牌和卡车司机帽包围，会觉得自己仿佛走进了一个位于东京市中心的古早万宝路广告。
On a recent visit to the UES store in daikanyama, it would have felt like Nebraska had it not been for Asami Makino, kneeling down to measure his pants and chatting in Japanese to a first-time shopper. "Whole Lotta Love" by Led Zeppelin played in the background as she sat down at the half-century old Union Special sewing machine.
最近我去了代官山的UES店，如果不是看到牧野麻美(Asami Makino)正在跪着量裤脚，还用日语跟一位首次购买他们品牌的顾客聊天，这里感觉跟内布拉斯加州没两样。当她在有半世纪历史的美国Union Special缝纫机前坐下时，背景响起齐柏林飞艇(Led Zeppelin)的《许多爱》(Whole Lotta Love)。
Levi started it all, and there's no doubt we got a lot of inspiration from Levi, she said. "but we don't go with the flow, we try to come up with our own ideas."
Instead of ironing the crease, she tapped it with a wooden mallet. In the end, she took out a branding machine and stamped the purchase date on the leather. If you can afford a pair of these pants for 23,800 yen ($218), this detail makes them a perfect souvenir.
Take the post-world war ii jeans off the shelf as if they were folded against cardboard. Not really. This stiffness is due to the use of "original cow" fabric. Mr. Makino said the starched jeans had not been pre-washed because the best way to achieve the desired high-contrast fading effect was to wash them only once, and then wear them for at least six months.
It's uncomfortable at first because the material is really hard. And it feels tight around the waist when you buy it, about an inch, Mr. Makino said. "But if you can stand it for a while, it will fit you perfectly and you can wear it every day."
Japanese tannins, worth the sacrifice, began to develop in the 1970s, when strikes by American workers halted textile imports, according to marks. To make truly indigenous cowboys, Japanese manufacturers have had to forget many of the lessons they learned in the millennium aizen tradition. If the colour penetrates the cloth, it will not fade. They had to dye the strands lighter to keep the center white so that the white would come out over time.
Hidehiko Yamane, the store manager, wrote in his book 'Tateoti: Evisu the photobook' that he wanted to make jeans' like the ones I bought at the surplus store when I was in high school. ' He created a brand called Evis, a play on the word Levi's, and painted a seagull logo on the back of his pants that looked like Levi's stitches. Evis eventually became Evisu.
古着店经理山根英彦(Hidehiko Yamane)在他的《Tateoti：Evisu摄影集》(Tateoti: Evisu the photobook)一书中写道，他想做出“像我上中学时在剩余物资商店买到的一样”的牛仔裤。他创立了一个名为Evis的品牌，是对Levi’s这个词的演绎，还会在裤子背面画上海鸥形状的品牌标识，看上去和李维斯的针脚形状很像。Evis最终演变成了Evisu。
At Evisu the Tokyo store in daikanyama, I found Saito Yasushi, a shop assistant, among a pile of cowboy-coated motorcycle helmets, a lovely collection of denim knapsacks and golf accessories. He was bending over a pair of jeans, his hands dyed indigo, and he had painted the back of them with a giant seagull pattern, which no one would mistake for Levi's.
在位于代官山的Evisu东京(Evisu the Tokyo)店里，我在一堆牛仔涂层的摩托车头盔、一组可爱的丹宁布腰包和高尔夫配件中找到了店员斋藤安石(Saito Yasushi)。他正俯身面对一条牛仔裤，双手染上了靛蓝，在裤子背面画上点点旋旋的巨大海鸥图案，由此就成了一条没人会错认成李维斯的裤子。
Evisu is the brand that really broke the denim reproduction, says marks. David Beckham wore it. Jay-z mentioned it in the song. "But there was a backlash from his staff, who said, 'no, we have to make the perfect 501 copy. '"
Different brands also have varying degrees of commitment to strict tradition, from copper rivets to chain seams to classic cuts to rimmed denim, suggesting that these fabrics are made on small batch looms.
It's very Confucian, Mr. Marks said. "there's a perfect pair of iconic jeans, the Levi's 501 from the '30s to' 60s, which was supposed to be the perfection of the past, but we lost it. This idea is different from the progressive western idea that you can always make better jeans. It's like a race to see who can do better with what they've lost."
At UES and Evisu, head to Gohanya Isshin's restaurant in daikanyama for a sashimi and tempura lunch. It would be a huge mistake not to eat the pumpkin creme brulee. After you've had your fill, you can stop by the quiet garden of the former asakura mansion, a traditional early 20th-century Japanese house, before heading off to the next stop.
Heading east, through ebissau, you can shop for Warehouse & Co. The brand's founder used to work at Evisu but now focuses on "faithful replicas of vintage clothing". Their jeans can satisfy purists.
往东走，穿过惠比寿，你可以逛一逛Warehouse & Co.的店。该品牌的创始人曾在Evisu工作，但现在专注于“复古服饰的忠实复刻品”。他们的牛仔裤可以满足纯粹主义者。
We are uncompromising in reproducing those vintage jeans, Masaki Fujiki, a sales and communications manager for Warehouse & Co., said in an email. He says the brand, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary, has never changed its manufacturing process, from yarn to how to spin to aizen.
“我们毫不妥协地复刻那些复古牛仔裤，”Warehouse & Co.的销售和公关经理藤木正树(Masaki Fujiki)在电邮中表示。他说，从纱线到如何纺线再到蓝染，这个即将迎来25周年纪念的品牌从未改变生产工艺。
Warehouse & Co. 's Duckdigger collection is based on work clothes found in a ghost town in the U.S. west in the 19th century, Mr. Fujimi said. Their jeans, suspenders and jumpsuits cost between $200 and $300, and they sell their own denim wash brand.
藤木介绍说，Warehouse & Co.的“Duckdigger”系列是根据19世纪在美国西部一座鬼城中被发现的工作服设计的。他们的牛仔裤、背带裤和连体服的价格在200到300美元之间，还会销售自己的牛仔水洗品牌。
Their clothing labels say, "beware of imitations." "Authentic" is a word that often appears on Warehouse's website and catalogues.
So, how do you make authentic jeans? "Max asked." if you can make authentic jeans the way they used to be, then you have a claim to authenticity. That's what Japan does."