Join us on a historical journey that transcends time and borders. The OD+LW "Bengara" SZ Vintage Pinborder Knit Double V Sweatshirt is more than a piece of clothing; it's a bridge connecting cultures and craftsmanship.
Celebrating a color so deeply rooted in history actually began with another aimless deep dive into Okayama’s history that we often find ourselves exploring, when we came across the impressive village of Fukiya, located in the Kibi Highlands. The roofs and walls of the homes that line this village celebrate the heritage homes and architecture of the past, and was once an important mining town in Japan, producing a ton of copper ore. As you may remember from the last time we dropped our Bengara (弁柄 or “Indian Red”) collab, the color was a discovery from copper mines, when it was first extracted from copper ore. In fact even today, Takahashi city in Okayama Prefecture, is the only location in Japan that still produces Bengara naturally. But of course before that the color was first introduced when Portuguese missionaries arrived initially in the 1500s. Alongside the religious values and tempura (as an example) that they brought with them on their discovery ships, the Portuguese had already occupied a small island town in a India called Goa by that point. They had also discovered the city of Bengal in India, internationally renowned for the Indian tigers they share their namesake with.
Approaching collaborations with Loop & Weft is always a discovery of natural dyes and hues as we have explained before. We have the privilege of experiencing new proprietary developments of their fabrics coming out of Wakayama well before they are placed within the product line. This allows us to study said fabric, giving us the opportunity to decide how we want to approach the next collaboration. The stripes that exist within the fabric was a golden opportunity of overdue experimentation in our book. Craftsmanship is at the heart of this creation.
Woven entirely in Wakayama, Japan, this sweatshirt features a unique "SZ yarn" that prevents twisting of the fine stripe pattern, giving the fabric a luxurious touch. Its dense knit and brushed-back fleece offers a smooth and plush texture, ensuring both fabric stability and insulation.
Using the new SZ Vintage Pinborder Knit Double V Sweatshirt fabric that was developed for the current season, we took the S. Gray version of the piece and overdyed it in the hue that was once reserved only for royalty in Japan. A fabric this special, deserves to be overdyed in a hue that is revered and treasured in Japan as a noble color.