Lawless Denim & Co., a new shop where shoppers can get custom, quality jeans, is set to open in CityScape in downtown Phoenix in October.
The store will have an on-site designer, Maya Vita, and tailors on staff to create custom jeans for about $200.
Customers will have a selection of 25 different denims and ten different styles. They can also go in as their own designer, in which case “the sky is the limit,” said owner Roman Acevedo.
Selvage denim, a type of material that is made on vintage looms that date before WWII, will be a selection that customers can choose to customize. Acevedo said he gets most of his selvage denim from Japan.
“After WWII, America gave Japan our old looms, and they started making denim,” Acevedo said.
The store will also use vintage sewing machines for stitching on the jeans.
“It’s about keeping it traditional,” Acevedo said. “These are the types of looms that Levi Strauss started making his denim with.”
The custom jeans will take about 48 hours to make, and all jeans are made on site. Lawless will also have ready-made jeans that will sell for anywhere from $85 to $180.
Because the denim isn’t made in bulk, Acevedo said, it’s a very exclusive material.
“They’ve got one-of-a-kind denim,” he said.
Acevedo said his vision is to bring West Coast style to Arizona.
“You can’t get anything like this here,” Acevedo said. “In California, you could find custom jeans like this and pay $400. I wanted to bring that here and keep it affordable for the ‘average Joe.’”
Downtown resident Leah Gillespie is excited about the store, but the prices raised concerns.
“I think it’s a good idea, but downtown will be hard if he doesn’t get the word out to the right people,” Gillespie said.
Gillespie said she thinks the store will aim more at younger professionals who want to be fashionable and have the income that a student doesn’t.
Mike Leis, another Phoenician, agrees. Although the pricing may be higher than normal, Leis believes the success of Lawless Denim will depend on its ability to reach out to potential customers outside of the downtown Phoenix corporate circuit.
“It’ll rest on their marketing campaign,” Leis said. “People that walk by the store, students and business people on lunch, won’t be the right demographic.”
Nutrition and dietetics sophomore Natalie Lopez agreed that the pricing is a point of contention.
“I would not spend 200 dollars for a pair of jeans,” Lopez said. “I usually spend like 30 bucks. I don’t think they’ll do well. They’re right next to a college. No one has money.”
But Lawless won’t strictly be a store for jeans.
The store will also carry Wolverine 1000 Mile boots and bracelets, made from KOJA leather. Acevedo said Lawless also has denim jacket prototypes that will hit the shelves too.
After the holidays, there are plans to make shirts as well.
“We want to get everything up and running and take baby steps first, but hopefully, we’ll start doing shirts and tops made from denim as well as Italian and Egyptian cotton,” Acevedo said.
Lawless Denim & Co. plans to open in October and is throwing an opening party at the store on Oct. 12 to show Phoenix what it’s all about.
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