By Robin | March 25, 2022

5 pairs of Jeans to Rock During the Indigo Invitational

With only seven days left until the start of the Indigo Invitational, the contest is a hot topic of conversation in the denim scene. After successfully hosting the first two editions, the world’s biggest and most inclusive fading contest is ready for round 3, starting on April 1st. While most of you have probably already chosen your (denim) weapon of choice, it won’t stop us from featuring 5 pairs of jeans which are particularly suitable for the contest, for those who haven’t decided yet.

The concept of the Indigo Invitational is as simple as it can be, all you need is a fresh pair of unworn raw denim, and all brands, weights, and colors are welcome. After 365 days of fading, a panel of denim experts will pick the winners – and we are happy to announce that Robin Denim will be part of the jury again this year. The most important rules for the Indigo Invitational are: Don’t wear your jeans prior to April 1st, no artificial fading, and respect all fellow contestants. Pretty easy, right?

For the occasion, we have carefully selected 5 pairs of jeans of which we believe would be ideal for the Indigo Invitational. These pairs are well-made, will easily make it through the 365 days of wear, and are built to fade impressively. Oh, and in case you have already registered a contest pair, all jeans featured below are a great addition to your collection, without a doubt!


The 15 oz. Tanuki AM6651T ‘Amagumo’ 

Tanuki Inc. was founded in 2016 in Okayama, Japan, and was established by a collective of passionate craftsmen who together have decades of experience in the Japanese denim industry. The brand was brought to life in order to bring a fresh wind of creativity and boldness to an industry which was, according to the collective, dominated by tradition. Tanuki is always trying to combine tradition, modernity and change, which has made them release countless sharp, contemporary and immensely popular designs, made following traditional high-quality Japanese manufacturing.

The AM6651T is Tanuki’s tapered fit which provides ample room in the top block and thighs, while maintaining a slim silhouette throughout the leg. The jean features all Tanuki’s signature details including branded copper hardware, reinforced back pockets, and the brands’ “Ni” (二) logo stitching at the right back pocket and the leather patch.

The 15 oz. ‘Amagumo’ denim fabric was developed and woven by the brand itself, and fuses the signature irregular texture of the brand’s denim along with unique natural dyeing techniques, resulting in a fabric which fits comfortably from day one. The warp yarns have a deep blue indigo color, and the weft yarns have been rope-dyed with black ‘Kuromame’ beans, with a grey-ish color. The 100% Texan cotton fabric has been designed for quick and unique fading, which is particularly suitable for the Indigo Invitational. The warp yarns of the ‘Amagumo’ fabric will age to a ‘steel grey’, giving contrast to the indigo weft yarns, resulting in a beautiful and unique fading pattern with wear.

The 15 oz. Tanuki AM6651T ‘Amagumo’ is available for €280 at

Tanuki Photo courtesy of Koen Kuik.


The 16 oz. Realign RLGN-R ‘Structure Selvedge’ 

Realign is a product of Robin Denim and is entirely designed in the Netherlands with all manufacturing taking place in Japan. After working in the denim industry for several years, visiting factories and trade shows across the globe, as well as reviewing hundreds of pairs of jeans, Robin wanted to create the ultimate pair of jeans. In close consultation with some of Japans’ major manufacturers, Realign managed to create an entirely made in Japan jean which incorporates both the heritage of Japanese denim and the current zeitgeist in the international denim industry.

The RLGN-R is a regular fit with a medium rise, sufficient room in the thighs and a slight taper throughout the leg – all resulting in a very contemporary silhouette. The jean features the brands’ signature details like custom made brass-plated buttons, a tonal stitched arcuate, and a limited indigo dyed deerskin leather patch.

The name ‘Structure Selvedge’ was conceived by Japan’s Collect Mills and derives from its irregular and ‘slubby’ texture. The compact fabric is woven on vintage shuttle looms at a low tension, which results in a comfortable and durable yet breathable fabric. It might feel a little tough and rigid in the first few weeks of wearing, but it will soon soften and mold to the wearer. Over time, the 16 oz. Structure Selvedge will offer high contrast fades in a vibrant blue color and attractive overall wear. As of the construction of the fabric, the RLGN-R won’t compete with quick-faders in the Indigo Invitational, but it will guarantee impressive fades after 365 days of wear!

The limited 16 oz. RLGN-R is available in the Realign Denim Webstore for €300.

Realign DenimPhoto courtesy of Koen Kuik.


The 15.5 oz. Fullcount 1110XX ‘Original Selvedge

Founded in 1993 by Mr. Mikiharu Tsujita, Fullcount is one of the famed ‘Osaka Five’ and a kingpin in Japanese denim, having had a major impact on the development of the fabric from day one. The brand pioneered the use of Zimbabwean cotton in the production of selvedge denim and can also lay claim to many more milestones within the Japanese denim industry. Fullcount’s aim is for quality, comfort and daily wear, which led the brand to the mission; ‘creating a jean that feels so good you don’t want to take them off’.

The 1110XX is based on Fullcount’s original tapered fit, with some slight tweaks over the years, including a higher rise, a curved waistband and a more tapered leg opening. According to the brand, the 1110XX fit is the most modern silhouette in the Fullcount collection. The jean features a full set of original Fullcount silver-coated copper buttons, copper rivets and a vegetable tanned goatskin leather patch.

The 1110XX comes in Fullcount’s original selvedge denim which weighs in at 15.5 oz. The thick yarns are woven from long-staple Zimbabwe cotton and the fabric is rinsed in their unsanforized state to remove shrinkage. The thick and textured fabric will soon soften after just a few weeks of wear and can be worn comfortably through all seasons, due to its composition. Fullcount’s original selvedge denim has been dyed using a specially developed dark indigo in order to achieve unique fades. Instead of fading to white, the fabric will evolve into a light blue gradation which will be accentuated on the whiskers and honeycombs. Isn’t that what we all need for Y3 of the Indigo Invitational?

The Fullcount 1110XX in the brands’ 15.5 oz. original selvedge denim is available for €270 at

FullcountPhoto courtesy of Koen Kuik.


The 15.7 oz. Momotaro 0605-SP ‘Zimbabwe Cotton

Next in line is one of Japans’ most popular denim brands, Momotaro Jeans, which is undoubtedly deserving of everyone’s consideration for the Indigo Invitational. The brand is known for their extremely high-quality denim fabrics, great fits and the striking battle stripes! In their 15 years of existence, the brand has played an integral role in the development of the Japanese denim industry, having had an impact on every facet of the supply chain, and being a true ambassador for Japanese denim on the global scale.

Momotaro’s 0605-SP is a natural tapered fit providing room in the top block with a high rise, medium thighs and a strong taper all the way down to the leg opening. The 0605-SP features all typical Momotaro details including a custom branded natural cowhide leather patch, pink inseam thread and the world-famous “Going to Battle” stripes on the right back pocket.

The 15.7 oz. Zimbabwe Cotton selvedge denim fabric is made exclusively for Momotaro by Collect Mills and retains the brands’ iconic pink and white selvedge. This specific denim fabric became Momotaro’s staple fabric and is widely praised by the community for its structure and character, as well as its great fading potential. The stiff and rigid fabric has a smooth yet hairy handfeel, and needs a few weeks of wear before it will soften and mold. With proper wear, and a touch of dedication, the fabric will start to develop interesting high contrast fades, making it a faithful companion to wear for the Indio Invitational

The 15.7 oz. Momotaro 0605-SP is available at the Momotaro Jeans webstore for €270.

Momotaro JeansPhoto courtesy of Koen Kuik.


The 20 oz. Piger Works No.5S 20MF ‘Master of Fade

Probably somewhat surprisingly we add Piger Works to our list of recommendations. While all the brands above are made in Japan, Piger Works is a Thailand-based denim brand, which was established in 2010 just outside Bangkok. Piger Works, a loyal supporter of the Indigo Invitational, stole the hearts of many denim heads by their solid construction, great details and impressive fades (which obviously sparked our curiosity). At Piger Works, customers are able to select their fabric of choice (from a collection ranging from 13.4 – 22 oz.) and the desired fit, before the seasoned Piger Works staff will custom make the jean according to their wishes.

The No.5s. silhouette is Piger Works’ slim straight fit with a medium rise offering ample room in the top block and with straight legs. The No.5s. silhouette offers that extra bit of room which makes wearing a heavyweight fabric comfortable and wearable. The 20 oz. Piger Works No.5S 20MF has a custom 925 silver top button, a thick Japanese Tochigi leather patch and a two-color painted arcuate on the back pockets.

The ‘20MF Master of Fade’ denim fabric is designed and developed by Piger Works and was woven in Japan. The fabric is composed of a deep dark indigo warp, which is extra visible due to the adjusted smaller weft yarn – making the fabric look even deeper blue. The structure of the fabric has been modified in order to increase the comfort, encouraging the owner to wear and fade every day. The firmness of the ‘Master of Fade’ fabric will create and maintain strong creases, which eventually will lead to a unique and high-contrast fading dimension.

The 20 oz. Piger Works No.5S 20MF ‘Master of Fade’ is available at The Piger Works Webstore for €223.

Photo courtesy of Koen Kuik.


If you haven’t decided your weapon of choice yet, or if you haven’t registered your contest pair, make sure to do it as soon as possible but at least before April 10th. For the registration, you don’t need your (denim) weapon of choice in hand, so you can register while your jeans are on their way.  The Indigo Invitational Y3 is promising to be a huge success which will lead to some of the best fades the world has ever seen. We wish all participants of the most inclusive fading contest a great journey, happy fading, but most of all: plenty of fun!

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